How many fruit per cantaloupe plant?

My Maverick cantaloupe going a little crazy - it already formed 7 baseball-size fruit, and serious about setting 5-6 more. Two years ago when I planted same type it gave me 8 melons from one plant, but it stopped forming fruit on it’s own after 8 was set. Do you trim new fruit/flowers from your melon at some point or just let it grow on it’s own? I do not care much about fruit size, but I like them to be sweet.

I never prune nor thin melons. The plant will naturally abort too
much fruit.

That was my thought as well

It varies by year. In our area the sun bakes the plant or grasshoppers eat them down with or without pesticide on them. Never had a plant stop producing because it was worn out naturally. For us when we grow them it’s a race against time. The heavier the rain the more of a set back the small grasshoppers have. We encourage all the birds we can to stay because they eat a lot of grasshoppers.8 cantaloupe out of a hales best jumbo is a good yield here. When I was a kid I once grew 150 cantaloupe in my old chicken yard off 7 feet of plants. I must have been living right because I have yet to ever get those yields again. That same year I had 7 feet of national pickling cucumbers and got hundreds. Part of its location, soil, pest pressure, seed genetics, weather etc. an old man once told me it’s not how much land you have it’s how good the land you have is. He had hundreds of acres but his garden was 10x10. He produced more than I could at the time in a 150x30. He fertilized, brought in sand, composted, mulched, etc it was a picture perfect garden. Learned a lot about gardening by helping him.

It was due to all of the built up nitrogen in the soil from the
chicken droppings. Best fertilizer in the world. You should
see roses on turkey poop.

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Ray,
I’m sure your right about the nitrogen because I put chicken poop on my tomatoes and peppers and its pretty hot stuff. Bet those are the best roses around. Do you eat the turkeys or did the turkey poop come from elsewhere?

We use a scoop of chicken manure under the bottom layer of dirt in the hole to start our apples. Do those apples jump! Manure is the second best reason to keep chickens.:yum:

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A friend that grows turkey’s gave me the poop.

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Back on subject, when we grew cantaloupe for sale, my favorite variety Wilhites’ Carole, would crown set 9-11 melons then set another 5-10 later. The crown set was what you paid the rent with and the later ones were your profit. You really need to take care of your vines for that, can’t step on them and need to keep the cuke beetles off too.

First, a-men on the chicken poop! I put off cleaning out my chicken house all winter and tell myself its so I can use it for fertilize the following summer. Of course, I’m sure the better thing to do would be to go ahead and clean the house out and put the manure in a pile and compost it, but I’d rather just put off cleaning it out and tell myself its to save it for fertilize. ha. I’m curious, do you compost yours or just put it directly on your garden? As mentioned, I actually apply mine as straight manure. I’m well aware that it is much hotter that way and some people say you’ll burn your plants up if you don’t compost it first. But I just use smaller amount and stay a little further away from my plants and it works fine.

I also applaud your ability to make your cantaloupe vines last so long. Its all I can do to get my vines to live long enough to support and properly ripen the crown melons you mentioned. The reason is very simple: Powdery Mildew. It is absolutely AWFUL in my garden. Every year it starts in the same part of my cantaloupe patch and starts spreading out from there. I’ve tried everything from immunox to milk (yes, milk…read in a few places that it helps…it didn’t). But in the end, the plants succumb. Do you not have Powdery Mildew problems?

I clean once a year like you too. It’s very ripe. I want to compost it but foxtails and crabgrass grow in it when I try and then it gets weedy were I spread it. I’ll spread fresh then till it in 2-3 wks before I plant. That works for me.

You need to spray for mildew long before you see it and complete coverage is a must, and yes it’s still a problem. I rotate every year especially away from any vine crop and get the vines off and burnt after frost. I also rotate fungicides and spray every 5-7 days. You also need to be physically careful about stepping on vines or even bumping them. And some years the PM takes them early.

Thanks. Sounds like we’ve got lot in common besides chickens, bees, and fruit! I clean my chicken house once a year too, and the one time I put it in a pile I had exactly the same problem you did- weeds took it over (making it harder to scoop back up as well as gets weed seeds in it). ANd when I do clean out my chicken house, I take it all up to my garden and just spread it all over it about 1-2 weeks before tilling it. Same as you! Sounds like you also have to deal with PM. Yea, with all this in common, either 2 GREAT MINDS think alike or FOOLS seldom differ. Not sure which applies!

Yup

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