A muskmelon, also known as a cantaloupe, is a favorite among home gardeners. Depending on your growing season, muskmelons can be directly planted in the garden or started indoors and transplanted when weather conditions are right. Muskmelons typically take 90 days to mature, but some varieties may be ready to harvest a few days earlier or later. Most varieties of muskmelons are harvested when the stem separates from the vine; a few varieties need to be cut from the vine when the melon is fully mature.
Create 1-inch deep rows in the prepared garden. Space rows 5 feet apart. You can use the handle end of a hoe to create the rows.
Place muskmelon seeds in the row several inches apart.
Cover the seeds with 3/4 to 1 inch of soil. Water the rows until the soil is moist, but not flooded, if rain is not forecast in your area for the next two to three days.
Allow the plants to reach a height of 4 to 6 inches and then thin the plants to one plant every 18 inches. Choose the strongest and healthiest plants to keep in the row.