On appreciates it for its sweet and refreshing taste. As an appetizer or dessert, Growing Melon (doucumis melo) is the king of summer, on the counters, on our plates and in the vegetable garden! But how to successfully grow this fruit and vegetable from the family Cucurbitaceae with a malleable character?
What You Need to Know:
- Botanical name: honey cucumber
- Common name : Melon
- Family: Cucurbitaceae
- Plant type: Twining and creeping annual plant
- Leaves: The melon has rough, lobed leaves, fifteen to twenty centimeters long, in the axils of which small yellow flowers appear.
- flowers : The male yellow flowers are clustered while the female flowers are solitary.
- Fruit: The fruits, round or oval, have smooth or embroidered skin and sometimes even slightly ribbed. This diversity is the richness of the melon species Cucumis melo. This diversity is also confirmed when tasting, since the sweet flesh is sometimes crunchy, sometimes melting, from light green to orange.
- Exposure : In sunshine
- Sol : Deep, rich and well-drained soil.
Semis Du Melon
Sow indoors or in a greenhouse in spring (March to late May) one to three melon seeds per bucket, tip down, in a light seeding compost. You can also make your own by mixing two parts soil for one part white peat and one part sand.
Then place these seeds in a greenhouse or under cover, at a temperature of 25°C so that the seeds germinate quickly. We must try to limit the temperature contrast between the day and the cool nights.
When And How To Plant Watermelon In The Soil?
After emergence, when the plants have developed the first 2 or 3 true leaves, keep only the prettiest ones by cutting the others with scissors.
Wait for fin mai to plant in the ground when the earth is warm enough.
What soil for melon? Melon needs deep, rich, well-drained soil. A la planting bring a good amount of compost spread on the surface then install a mulch around the footing to achieve significant and rapid root growth.
In the first few days, it may be helpful to cover the plants with a bell to promote recovery.
Harvesting will then begin from mid-July to mid-August for sowing to take place in March.
Melon Cultivation Under Greenhouse Tunnel
The melon needs a lot of heat and a good dose of compost. In a very large majority of areas in France, the climate is too cool, the summer season too short to bring melons to maturity. So, unless you’re only growing proven local varieties outdoors, growing melons requires little investment because they only give good results if done under a tunnel-greenhouse.
As the fruits form, put a pavers, tile or slate underneath to insulate them from the ground. Then you will harvest pure fruit. A layer of dry scraps produces the same effect, but you should consider renewing it.
Can Watermelon Be Grown In The Ground Or Should It Be A Trellis?
melon cultivation is usually done in the ground. trellising is still possible, such as pergola cucumbers or some squashes. the melon (doucumis melo) is indeed furnished with tendrils, and its stems are strong enough to support the weight of the fruit. The trellis then saves space.
How To Water Melon?
Watering must be regular, especially when the fruits are forming, otherwise you risk getting broken melons or exploding.
Le melon se Pruning the aim is to keep only four or five fruits per plant.
Melon size is very simple. It takes place in 2 steps:
- When the legs have developed large leaves, cut the main stem after the 6th leaf; the plant will branch out.
- Then resize so you don’t leave only 3 or 4 melons per foot. Then prune the fruiting stems, leaving one leaf behind each melon. it will serve as a juice pump so that your melons grow well.
When to Pick Watermelons?
He picks melons when they are fully ripe, from July to September, keeping a piece of stem to promote their preservation.
the melon is ripe when a small slit begins to form around the stem.
Varieties of Melon
There are 7 types of melons to grow, divided into 2 large families:
- the wild melons (Cucumis peasant) are cultivated in India and China. Their flesh is usually white and crisp or floury, but is only slightly sweet.
- melons of the melo subspecies (melo cucumber) are the most widespread in our latitudes. These are especially the ones we find in our gardens.
Choose a variety well adapted to your region’s climate, such as:
- The medium-sized melons are particularly distinguished by their beautiful grooves in their hard skin. Their flesh, orange in most cases, is sweet and aromatic.
- Muskmelons have, unlike melons, skin with a “corky” appearance. Their flesh is also sweet and aromatic.
Other more original melons are also grown, such as the snake melon, whose shape resembles that of a cucumber. Without flavor and aroma, it is eaten like a cucumber.
Common Diseases And Problems In Melon Cultivation
It is characterized by black hollow spots that appear on the skin of the fruit. The leaves can also become infected and in this case end up tearing.
Leaf Blight Disease
This affection, due to a fungus, ends up attacking the entire fruit. It is then necessary to eliminate all infected plants, disinfect the tools used (as well as disinfect the hands) and wait at least three years before planting.
Mildew OR Melon Mildew
This disease, also caused by a fungus, is spread by seeds. It appears on the first leaves of the plant, before spreading to the rest of the foliage. Light green then light yellow spots appear.
Small spots appear on the leaf blades of the melon, which eventually turns yellow.
History Of The Melon
More than 4,000 years have passed since melon is cultivated in the Mediterranean basin and in Asia, although it is native to Africa.
After being introduced to Greece and Italy, it appeared in France in the 15th century, at the initiative of Charles VIII. the melon (doucumis melo) was then widely cultivated in Cantalupo, the Pope’s summer residence, from which the name melon melon comes. And it is this melon that will soon settle in Cavaillon, where we know its now legendary reputation.