Watermelon & Melon Growing 2019


How long do watermelon rinds take to compost?


For how long watermelon can be stored after it picked? And what is the best way to keep it?


I’d say a couple of weeks. And I think the fridge is the best place bu could be wrong.


The fridge is the best place, but be sure to turn down the
temp setting. Melons have a tendency to freeze in a fridge
even at a middle setting. I’ve thrown away my share of frozen


Do you wrap them in something (paper, film) or keep as is? I am afraid they will dry out…


Watermelons will hold about 2 weeks. The best way to store is inside your house or under a shade tree. I normally do not refrigerate until I am about to cut or after I cut. I have had my best luck refrigerating after cut and it normally holds a good 5 days after that.


The tendersweet is pretty good when it gets a darker yellow. The tendrils died a few weeks before they where ripe on the ones I grew this year. It made real hard to pick right.


No they don’t dry out. The inside of watermelon will get mealy in time but that’s from being over ripe not drying out.


Not long if you slice up the rind into small pieces. In this case, I had quartered the whole melon and threw all four quarters onto the pile. They’ll be soil next spring/summer!


How far apart did you end up spacing your plants. What did you use for side dressing fertilize.


I spaced them 18 (Correction – 24) inches apart, and I used drip irrigation and black plastic. This was a row that I tilled and then mixed in about three cubic yards of leaf compost, some vermiculite, and some sphagnum moss, as well as a little powdered lime.

After the seeds germinated and put on a few true leaves, I used some water soluble Miracle-Gro I think twice at each plant.

Here’s the 41-lb Big Stripe, which we just cut open tonight.

It is excellent. Thanks to @rayrose for putting me on to this variety. This thing was practically leaking juice as we were slicing up a quarter to eat.

To be fair, the other Big Stripe melons aren’t sizing up like this. However, we have a couple Moon and Stars which are going to be close to 40 lbs each, if they don’t surpass it.

Back to the Tendersweet Orange melons, thanks for mentioning that. Willhite’s doesn’t list the number of days for this variety like they do for the others. I’m presuming I picked that one the other day a little early. We shall see with the others.


Gonna have to try big stripe next year. I noticed on the first tendersweet I picked where around 40 to 42 days after fruit set and they where perfect. After that I had too many to tell when they set. They do seem to get a good yellow bottom and a sunburn on top when ripe. It’s amazing how different our techniques are and how they both work. I make my rows 8’ apart and space plants 3’ apart. I make a furrow and put 13-13-13, potash, and lime in it and then hill it up with garden hiller. Then lay plastic over the hill and plant transplants 2 weeks later. Then when plants start to fall over and run I use ammonia nitrate at a lb per 100’ of row and cottonseed meal beside plastic and then let them go after that.


There are a multitude of methods for growing watermelons.
You’ll find out, through experimentation, what works best for
your location, and is the easiest to apply. The main thing melons
need are sunlight, heat, water, and loose soil. If you have those
four essentials, it’s hard to fail.


Mini Love Watermelon. Exactly as advertised. 13.5 Brix and really good down to the thin rind. I think this is a winner for short season growers. I picked it as soon as the bloom disappeared. Next year I am going to try direct seeding instead of transplant.


Last summergold of the year sure gonna enjoy every bite. Wish I had a Brix tester because this variety has been super sweet all season.


Picked last few starbrites not very big but will eat just as well.


Thanks for mentioning the Mini Love, after reading more reviews, it sounds like a heavy bearing, compact vine with smaller leaves. I’ve put it on the garden list for next year!


Watermelons are a little behind here, but they’re alive and doing better than I thought they would when the season started. Harvested the first of the season today, a little Kaho. Weighed a bit over 5 lbs. Was dead ripe and had excellent texture, but not quite as sweet as I like. Still, not bad at all and a lot better than no melon. Rind is very thin. Rather seedy, but the seeds are actually quite soft and not at all unpleasant. They were easy to eat along with the melon.

Unfortunately, I’m not going to be harvesting any Zatta or Kajari melons. This has been an especially bad year for squash bugs and cucumber beetles----and, thanks to the latter, bacterial wilt has pretty much wiped out my C. melo patch. The dratted things got established during an early season rainy spell and I’ve just not been able to achieve satisfactory control with neem + karanja oil and spinosad + Beauveria bassiana.

Cucumbers have been hit badly with the wilt this year, too—and I rarely have problems with it. Wouldn’t have had any cukes at all if I hadn’t been growing the hybrid bush variety Alekseich. It is susceptible to bacterial wilt, but because it goes into production so fast, the plants have been able to produce some before succumbing. Every other cultivar collapsed before producing much.


I’m sorry to hear about your pest plight. We too have significant issues with squash bugs and cucumber beetles, with the former being much worse than the latter for us. My wife has given up on pumpkins because of them. Heck, I killed a squash bug on a popcorn stalk yesterday.

For some reason, though, they haven’t caused a problem with our watermelons. Here’s part of a 21-lb Raspa we picked yesterday. I just cut it up a few minutes ago.


I pulled out the hill of melons that hadn’t set any fruit yet. Don’t want melons in October. It’ll leave more space for the others.