How to Grow Melons

Written by ehow home & garden editor
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Melons are vining, warm season plants with fleshy fruits in the Cucurbitaceae family. There are two genera: Citrulius (watermelons) and Cucumis (all other melons.) They bear large round fruit with a pulpy flesh and many seeds. Cantaloupe, honeydew, muskmelon and watermelon are the best-known examples of this family. Melons originated from southwest Asia and have been cultivated for more than 4,000 years.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Select a site with full sun and rich, fertile soil in the 6.0 to 6.5 pH range. Melons also require a lot of space and three to four months of weather in the 70- to 80-degree range before the melons can be harvested.

  2. 2

    Use a compost heap, if possible. This will provide additional heat and nutrients. Wait until the last frost has passed and the ground has dried before planting.

  3. 3

    Plant melon seeds one inch deep in a 2- to 3-foot mound. There should be two plants per mound and the mounds should be spaced 4 to 6 feet apart. The seedlings should sprout within 10 days. Thin out smaller, weaker vines leaving the two best vines on each plant.

  4. 4

    Keep melons away from other family members such as cucumbers, pumpkins and squash to keep undesired pollinations from occurring.

  5. 5

    Provide 1 to 2 inches of water per week, especially while the fruit is maturing. Stop watering a week before harvesting the melons but don't allow the vine to wilt completely.

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