How to Grow Honeydew Melons
Avoid planting honeydew melons near cucumbers, pumpkins or squash because cross-pollination might occur. This would create a fruit that is a crossbreed of the honeydew and the other vegetable.
Honeydew melons are a popular melon that many gardeners enjoy growing and then eating. Gardeners will have success growing honeydew melons after starting the melon seeds indoors. After the seedlings have two true leaves, the gardener can transplant the honeydew melon seedlings outdoors, where they will thrive throughout the growing season and provide a bountiful honeydew melon harvest at the end of the summer.
Fill the peat pots with potting soil two weeks before the outdoor soil and air temperatures will be at least 60 degrees.
Place one seed in each pot under 1 inch of potting soil. Water the newly planted seeds and keep the peat pots in a location that stays between 70 and 80 degrees. Water the seeds every day to keep the soil moist.
Harden the seedlings off to the outdoors one week prior to outdoor planting. Place the peat pots outdoors in the middle of the afternoon in a location that is out of direct sun and wind. Keep the peat pots outdoors for three hours and then bring them back inside. Over the next week, gradually keep the peat pots outdoors for a longer period and move the pots to a sunnier and windier location to help the plants adjust to outdoor weather.
Prepare the growing area by working the soil with the garden spade. Work the soil down to a depth of at least 6 inches. Add 2 inches of compost to the top of the soil to improve the quality of the soil. Work the compost in to the soil with the spade and then level the growing area with the garden rake to finish preparing the growing area.
Plant the seedlings in the prepared area, spacing each seedling 3 to 4 feet apart from other seedlings on all sides. Pat down the soil around the newly planted seedlings and water generously.
Water the honeydew melon plants with 2 inches of water each week during the morning hours. Water around the base of the plants and avoid getting water onto the leaves of the plants because wet foliage can contribute to fungal disease.
Fertilize the honeydew melon plants every two weeks by mixing the fertilizer with water according to package recommendations. Add a mulch of compost or shredded bark around the base of the plants to improve the soil.
Harvest the honeydew melons when you can smell the fruit through the rinds. Examine the stem where it connects with the vine. If the stem is separating, the honeydew melons are ripe. Cut the melons from the vine with a sharp knife.
- Avoid planting honeydew melons near cucumbers, pumpkins or squash because cross-pollination might occur. This would create a fruit that is a crossbreed of the honeydew and the other vegetable.
- Peat pots
- Potting soil
- Honeydew melon seedlings
- Garden spade
- Garden rake
- Fertilizer (5-5-5)
- Mulch (shredded bark)
- Sharp knife