Watermelon & Melon growing 2020

Anyone here has grown or is growing Sivan F1 melon?
We got free seeds as a compliment.

We put one plant in ground the same time as our 8 watermelon plants in late May (yes, we were late this year). While watermelon plants are struggling along, Sivan F 1 is growing vigorously. It has so many flowers.

So far, this plant has set 12 melons and counting, more than what my 8 watermelon plants combined have produced!!!

Hopefully, they will ripen for us. It is supposed to be only 82 day melons. It appears to have good reviews. Melons are on a small size. Love to hear your experience with this variety.

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Here is my one Sivan F1 plant.

I counted. It sets 14 good sized melons and looks to have more tiny ones. How many melons a vine can carry? I do not over burden it. This is my first year with this melon.


Harvested it at the right time about 7 weeks. Tastes heavenly! I have to thank @rayrose for his original thread on this variety. I bought the seed in 2018 but couldn’t plant it with my move. Seed was still viable!


First melon of the season here in Northern VA. I picked it in the rain tonight. 36-lb Big Stripe. I’ll be picking its twin tomorrow. This one measures a full foot in diameter on the short side. It’s in the fridge right now. We’ll all be gorging tomorrow!


Welp, used the “curley cue” method of knowing when to pick and definitely missed the mark. It actually tastes pretty good but I’ll wait a bit longer for the rest. Was pretty skeptical as I planted these as small starts in the middle of June…


Here are some pics of the Bradford melons to give a rough idea what they look like. The average weight ranges between 20 and 45 pounds with most around 32 pounds. They have some tendency to sunburn as is typical of dark green melons. Internal structure often includes white streaks which are edible and taste about the same as the rest of the melon. Flavor ranges from good to very good. I don’t have a refractometer, but would rate these to brix about 13 to 14 which is very high for a watermelon. I ate a large Bradford yesterday that was around 40 pounds and would easily rank as one of the best watermelons I’ve ever tasted. The negatives with this watermelon are the thick rind and white streaks in the flesh. I’ve been told that it makes exceptionally good watermelon rind pickles. That is on my agenda to try!

Would I grow this watermelon again? Yes, in a heartbeat! I’m always fiddling around with genetics. I would love to cross this watermelon with Wibb and combine the deep red color with the other good traits in Bradford. It would take about 10 years to stabilize, but has potential to turn out better than either parent… and both are very good watermelons.


Picked a trailer load last week and forgot to get a pic. Picked these this morning. The big stripes are very impressive as far as size and number of melons. Summer flavor 720s are not as big and not as productive for me. Most of them are about a week from being ready. I will put them to a taste test with pics in a few days.


Biggest big stripe out of this batch of melons is 38lbs. One of the first summer flavor 720s is coming in at 22lbs


Started eating Janosik here in Minnesota. Seeds planted may 15, put in garden May 25. Earliest I’ve ever had ripe melons. This beauty was over 20 pounds.


@MNmelons, now this is timing! I was just thinking about those big Janosiks you grew last season. And here you are with more big, beautiful melons! Welcome back!

Picked my first Janosik of the season yesterday. Weighed in right at 15 lbs—and was it ever delicious! Crisp and sweet, just about the perfect melon. And it is indeed early: I had to replant twice this year, and was worried I might be without watermelons this summer. But Janosik came through —and more are waiting!

Here’s a view of the Janosik section of my patch. You can see a number of them awaiting ripening. (Edit: That’s a Strawberry in front there—more, not pictured, behind me!) Will probably harvest another tomorrow. The vines are somewhat more compact than those of Strawberry, my other favorite melon, and seem to have decent disease resistance.

Anyway, I strongly recommend Janosik to my fellow melon-fiends.

Also picked my first Strawberry of the year yesterday. Like Janosik, it is reliable, productive, early and consistently good. I also commend this cultivar to the attention of melon growers. Will report back after I cut it.


Yes, Janosik is our favorite and been pretty easy to tell ripeness over the last 4 seasons. This year I’m also growing oranglo, Charleston grey, Wilson’s sweet, and a couple of crimson sweet. I have a Charleston grey with a bone dry tendril but hesitant to pick it. First year with this one.


That looks like a melon I need to try… it I had the space. I Have a smaller yellow variety going, but started about a month late in the season :man_facepalming: The only time I had a yellow watermelon was when I was visiting relatives in Taiwan, those were all small “personal sized” melons back in the 90s.

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I’m curious: what’s the secret to getting 20+ pound Janosiks? I mean, that is danged impressive—especially in 3b! Mine are always in the 10-15 range.

When it comes to melons, I’m always hesitant! I hang over just about any watermelon for days, examining, thumping, hand-wringing, before daring to pick it.

Well, I have fairly sandy soil. Cow manure has been spread and dug into it each October for at least 40 years. I plant them in black plastic and spray with Biosafe for fungal diseases. Water every 3 days once established if no rain. Only fertilizer they get is the cow manure. I hand pollinate as many blossoms as I can find early in the season with a Kids water color brush. This years been a great growing year for everything is why so early. But last year was a late spring and still got over 20 pounds and ripe ones starting August 25th.


I have been growing watermelons almost my entire life, but this year I’m having a big problem that I have never seen in my life. I keep having my vines broken in two or cut or something! What on earth is going on? I go out and I find 3-4 of my vines completely wilted and dead. I trace them back toward the base and at differing places (ie different distances from base to tip) I will find that the vine has been cut or broken or something. Strangest thing I ever saw. The cuts are not clean like a knife did it, they are a bit ragged. But the vines that aren’t wilted don’t appear to have been stepped on. Otherwise, I would think maybe some fairly large animal is running through the patch and catching a foot on the vine and it breaks. And that could be what is happening and it just isn’t damaging the other leaves enough to tell. The other thing I’m thinking is maybe mice or voles or something are chewing through the vines. I would think that was it except I’ve never had it happen to me before in 35 years = of growing melons, so its hard to believe mice just now decided to start chewing my vines in two.

Anyone ever seen anything like this or have any idea how I’d get 2-4 vines every day or two cut in two without seeing much if any damage to the remaining leaves and vines?

You definitely work hard for those beauties! Thanks for sharing!

@thecityman, Kevin,
Sorry to hear that. There is the first time of everything, though. One member never had a squirrel issue for 10 years. This year, they took most of her peaches.

Will it be possible to set up a surveillance camera? Then, you will know for sure.


You know, I’ve been meaning to get a trail cam anyway. That is a great idea. If its mice or voles they probably won’t show up but if I get the broken vines and no visible critters, that will tell me it probably is something small enough to crawl around under the leaves. You can imagine how frustrating it is to have a nice watermelon I’v waited 2.5 months on and which is only 2 weeks from being ready, then all of a sudden the vine is cut and of course the melon will stop growing and ripening! Grrr!


I would be so upset, too.

My wm growing this year isn’t great. My 10 plants produce fewer than 10 wm so far. Slow start and slow going.

You should see my Sivan F1 melon. One plant, it produces 20 melons so far. Do you know if I need to thin those melons?

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I had a pack rat doing strange things in my garden a few years ago, so I set a “live trap” and caught him. I think I set the trap with cat food, but I’m not sure.