Planting, Growing, and Harvesting Watermelon



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Everyone seems to love juicy watermelon in the summertime. Native to Africa, melons need warm temperatures (up to 80°F during the day) and a long growing season.

Gardeners in colder climates can still have success in growing watermelon vines by starting seeds indoors and choosing short-season varieties. Days to maturity range from 70 to 90, depending on the variety.


  • If you live in warmer climes, you can sow seeds directly outdoors, but wait until the soil temperature warms to at least 70°F to avoid poor germination.
  • Watermelon vines are very tender and should not be transplanted until all danger of frost has passed. (To be safe, wait at least two weeks past your last frost date.)
  • If you are in a cooler zone, start seeds indoors about a month before transplanting. 
  • Amend soil with aged manure, seaweed, and/or compost before planting. Watermelons are heavy feeders. Learn more about soil amendments and preparing soil for planting.
  • Watermelons prefer a soil pH between 6 and 6.8.
  • Growing the vines in raised rows, known as hills, ensures good drainage and will hold the sun’s heat longer. Space the plants about 2 feet apart in a 5-foot-wide hill. 
  • If you’re growing in rows, space 6 feet by 6 feet apart. 
  • Watermelons like loamy, well-drained soil. Handle them gently when you transplant. 
  • After you transplant, cover the plants with row covers to keep pests at bay. You’ll remove the row covers when you see both male and female flowers on the vine.
  • Find even more tips for planting watermelon in your home garden.


  • Mulching with black plastic will serve multiple purposes: it will warm the soil, hinder weed growth, and keep developing fruits clean.
  • Watering is very important—from planting until fruit begins to form. While melon plants are growing, blooming, and setting fruit, they need 1 to 2 inches of water per week.
  • Keep soil moist, but not waterlogged. Water at the vine’s base in the morning, and try to avoid wetting the leaves and avoid overhead watering. Reduce watering once fruit are growing. Dry weather produces the sweetest melon.
  • If you choose to fertilize (and many do), make sure it delivers more nitrogen than phosphorus and potassium. However, after flowering begins, use a fertilizer with less nitrogen. We like to use liquid seaweed.
  • Pruning isn’t necessary, but vine productivity may be improved if you do not allow lateral (side) vines to grow and stick to the main vine. When the plant is young, just cut off the end buds as they form (before the side shoots become vines). You can also pinch off some blossoms to focus the energy on fewer melons (though it’s a challenge to kill off a potential fruit).
  • Vines produce male and female flowers separately on the same plant. They often begin producing male flowers several weeks before the females appear. Do not be concerned if the male flowers fall off. The female flowers (which have a swollen bulb at the base) will stay on the vine and bear fruit.
  • Blossoms require pollination to set fruit, so be kind to the bees! 
  • As fruit is ripening, prevent rotting by gently lifting it and putting cardboard or straw between the fruit and the soil.



Watermelons don’t sweeten after they are picked, so harvest time is important. They generally ripen over two weeks so keep your eye on them.

Dr. Bill Rhodes, professor of horticulture at Clemson University, offers the following advice on how to tell if watermelons are ripe:

  • Thump it. If the watermelon sounds hollow, it’s ripe.
  • Look at the color on the top. The watermelon is ripe when there is little contrast between the stripes.
  • Look at the color on the bottom. A green watermelon will have a white bottom; a ripe melon will have a cream- or yellow-colored bottom.
  • Press on it. If the watermelon sounds like it gives a little, it’s ripe. (Rhodes doesn’t like this method because it can ruin the quality of the fruit.)
  • Check the tendril. If it’s green, wait. If it’s half-dead, the watermelon is nearly ripe or ripe. If the tendril is fully dead, it’s ripe or overripe; it’s not going to get any riper, so you might as well pick!
  • Stems should be cut with a sharp knife close to the fruit.
  • Watermelons can be stored uncut for about 10 days. If cut, they can last in the refrigerator for about 4 days. Wrap tightly in plastic.

Recommended Varieties

Wit & Wisdom

What’s in a name? Watermelon is 90% water.

The pumpkin vine never bears watermelons.

August 3 is National Watermelon Day (U.S.)!


Reader Comments

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about watermelon

I planted watermelon last two weeks,it started germinating this weeks pls advice me what can I do to make it save from pests


Last year I had a patch of watermelon. It did not do well because it didn't get watered. This year, the area where the watermelon grew is thick with plants that look like watermelon plants but I did not think they regrew. I know we did not have much of a winter so I was wondering if it is possible that these are watermelon plants--or, just weeds that look like watermelon. Any advice?

Watermelons and weeds

These are weeds.  Watermelons’ biggest issue is actually weed control and it’s important to pull the weeds so that your watermelon is not forced to compete for necessary water and nutrients. Perennial grasses that grow in the watermelon patch can be difficult to control so you need to stay on top of them.  Before you plant, dig up all weeds with a hoe. You can’t do this later or you’ll damage the vines of the melon. Also, put mulch between the plants to keep the weeds down. Finally, plant multiple melons far apart so you can get between the plants to weed easily.

It is useful

In his name the most high.

I am very grateful with your writing and I find it very useful not to only me, but to all nation. But my only problem is where can I get such hybrid seed in Nigeria. God bless u


now my watermelon is a bigger stems,when i cut a weeks

Malasol on Watermelon

I sprayed malasol on my watermelon garden 10days ago, because there were flies, ants, works and other insects on the leaves and fruit and some watermelon began to rot.
Now I want to know if it is safe to eat those that are ripe and others still growing?


i am growing my watermelon inside and i want FRUIT but i also dont want bees flying everywhere so can you tell me how to pollinate it your self?

hand-pollinating watermelon

Watermelons have male and female flowers. The male flowers have a stamen in the center with a sort of wavy anther at the top which holds the yellow powdery pollen. Female flowers have a center piece, the top of which is called a stigma; you should see a small swelling at the base of the flower where the fruit will form once pollinated (males do not have this–they have just plain straight stems). Select a male flower whose anther is full of mature yellow pollen. Dab a small, dry paintbrush (or a cotton swab) against the anther to get some pollen onto the brush. Then brush the paintbrush against the stigma of a female flower that is fully open and at peak. Some gardeners instead like to snip off the male flower, remove its petals (male only), and then dust pollen onto the female flower directly with the male flower; one male flower can pollinate about 3 or 4 female flowers. Keep in mind that male flowers sometimes open a little earlier in the growing season than female flowers. Also, each female flower is open for only one day, so you need to keep an eye out for them. Hand pollinate in the morning for best success. Good luck!

for information for temperature

frist of all ,I tell to you great thanks !I hope you are well or be young in your life ...
I am samir from india county , we cultivation as large scale since 2015 , in my farm house the groundwater in some salt ,or it not compare such as rain water ..
we growing local veraity of watermelon In jun or julai because in that day rainning start ,
but as I get some idea ,if I make ready fruits in hot summer .
so I have perchage suger baby watermelon seeds , how I germinate it before planting , if I take in water for up to 30 hours ???
here is now weather is 10 to 27 °C .
now I can planting outdoor directly or indoir because after one month temperature will it low 22 or high is 40

plz advise me because its very important for me , my whatsapp ++919649655002 thanks

first trial

thank you for your good guidance on how to plant watermelon.i want to have first trial of plant them


dear sir/madam
Am very much interested to start melon farming in sagana area kindly advice on how to go about it.


I've got the information I was searching for.I will try to do it as it's written here.Is my first time planting watemellon

I am blessed to have read

I am blessed to have read this cos I love eatewatet melon alot.God bless u


how can I start watermelon farm

I want to be a watermelon

I want to be a watermelon farmer i need to be educated on it. Cos i planted on august & is raining too much what will be the possition of the watermelon

Hoop house

I started my seeds 1 month late. I put them in the sunniest spot.

Now that Finally Flowers appear Fall is upon us in the northeast US.

So, my question is,

Should I bother building a small hoop house around my mailbox?

I did one or 3 before.

Watermelon hoop housing

Hi, Benjamin, Here’s the thing: Nature knows. In other words, the watermelon plant is going to know that the season has passed. The temps are dropping, the hours of daylight are lessening, and the angle of the sunlight is weaker. The likelihood of your plant surviving and providing fruit under a hoop house is slim to none…and, as the saying goes, slim’s out of town. So, should you bother building a hoop house? That’s for you to decide (what happened when you did it one or three years ago?).

Whatever you decide, also start thinking about being ready to start the seeds at the proper time, indoors next year.


Thanks for your interesting article. I am interested in mechanised planting of watermelon, noting that manual planting is very tedious. Are there any cheap technology available for planting?

Thanks for your info.v

Thanks for your info.v

More technique on how to produce water melons

I request more notes on water melon farming

3 big fruits, the others shrivel up

I have a great plant that's pretty much taking over most of my garden bed (I think it's sugar baby). I read that vines shouldn't be pruned so I snaked the new vines around to avoid them attaching to the other plants. I have 3 good size fruits (about 15 - 20 lbs) which are ripening great but all the other ones that were coming get about baseball size and then turn brown and squishy and die. I thought it might be because I never covered the soil under the vines and have lots of weeds inbetween.....any ideas?

fruit troubles

Sometimes when a watermelon vine has 2 or 3 good-size fruit on it, that is all that it can handle, and it will abort any other developing fruit. That is my best guess as to what is happening on your plant. Stressed plants will also abort fruit – check if the vines and leaves look healthy or show any signs of disease or infestation. Make sure that the plant has plenty of water and enough nutrients. Poor pollination can also cause fruit to drop before maturity.

Watermelon shapes

I have the cutest picture of a watermelon shape on my pinterest, it is so easy to make them attracktive for the kids so they would eat them or to put them on the table if you have a party. Way more healthier than chips!

Pls wich insecticide can I

Pls wich insecticide can I used for my watermelon

Sugar Baby Watermelon fruit growing problems

We are growing a sugar baby watermelon and the fruit starts to grow, but dies soon after. The fruit grows to about 1-2 inches long. There is a lot of leaves and foliage, but we are just having issues with the fruit continuing to grow. Any suggestions?

baby watermelon problems

What a disappointment! There could be a couple of reasons:

• the flower/s were not adequately pollinated or pollination failed; if your garden area lacks flowers that attract pollinators, hand pollinating (rubbing male/female flowers together)

• cool and/or cloudy weather; these need heat: try black plastic under to hold heat

• lack of moisture; these need lots of water

• too much nitrogen in your soil; use a fertilizer higher in phosphorus and potassium than in nitrogen

We hope this helps!

send farmers almanac to my

send farmers almanac to my sister. thank you, i am sharing, but better she get it thank you so much.

I'm trying to grow watermelon

I'm trying to grow watermelon at home in puerto rico. This information is going to help me.
I will let you know.


pls seed of water melon glow in manure area in my compound now it as spread all over my compund but the fruit tht are coming usually die after some time why and what should i do to protect them

My first Garden ever

I live in Lake Wales Florida for the first time in my life I have my first Garden ever it's little but it's plenty for me I'm looking to learn and grow with my garden well here I go I have 3 different types of tomato plants three different types of peppers spinach kale two different types of lettuce romano and iceberg green zucchini green beans peas 2 onions broccoli celery one strawberry plant and one watermelon pod.. in my kitchen window I have for pots I have Greek oregano basil and two different types of Ceylon through the leaves a different it was growing fine now that it's in the window getting direct sun my leaves are turning yellow could you kindly please help me..the soil here down south is different than up north I mixed the ground with cow manure plenty of it and potting soil as well I also water them with some type of fertilizing food like one teaspoon to a gallon of water so I was just wondering am I taking care of my garden the right way how do I continue to keep it healthy... thank you for your time looking forward to hearing from you with happy gardening smiles.

Most vegetables and herbs

Most vegetables and herbs grow best in fertile well-draining soil. It’s very important to amend the soil with organic matter like compost and/or aged manure. Each vegetable has different requirements for sun/shade and water/fertilizer. If you are using compost and manure you don’t need to use a lot of fertilzer. We suggest that you click on our vegetable/herb pages to read more about the specific growing conditions for each plant. We wish you luck with your first garden.

Sugar baby watermelon sprouting yellow...

Question: I planted some sugar baby watermelon in little starter cups. There are a few that sprouted and they are yellow. Are they too wet? I have others that have sprouted dark green, as they should be. Help please!
Thank you in advance!!

Watermelon planting

Sir, I don't understand the planting space between column and rows. Can you explain?

Novice watermelon gardener

I've started watermelon seeds in Jiffy peat pellets & at this time they're about 4". I've been preparing the soil for transplant. Here in So Tx the dirt is like clay. I've mixed in compost & potting soil to an area about 4'x6'. The seeds are Sugar baby. Do I need to transplant the seedlings asap, if so I hope my soil is satisfactory.

My first time growing

My first time growing watermelon and I put the seeds in a 20 gal container next to my garden. I am expecting the vines to grow from the container into the garden. Right now my entire garden is covered in black paper to keep the weeds down. I was hoping that the watermelon will just grow over the paper. Does the paper need to be removed so the vines can grow in soil or is there enough soil in the container that the vines will produce. I live in Florida so it is already warm and I wonder if the dark paper will be too warm for the watermelons. Thanks in advance.

watermelon in container

A 20-gal container is big; minimum 5 gallon is usually recommended. Does it have drainage holes? It will need a lot of water through the season, and as with any container, you want that water to be able to drain out.Water it daily when temps are below 80°F; twice when above.

Black paper is generally used to warm the soil and, as you say, warm the soil and keep out weeds. But your plant’s primary soil—the soil it’s growing in—is in the container. Do you have a sandy, loose composted soil mix in the pot? Not dirt from the ground (such as under the black mulch), right? Watermelons like a loose mix to spread out in.

Watermelon vines need something to cling to (when planted on the ground, this might be other plants or vines or even grass). You should expect to provide mesh or trellis or something to help guide your vines. We can’t be sure what they will do on the paper. The vines do not grow into the soil; the plants roots grow into the soil. Not sure if this answers your question.

People often grow watermelons in containers because they lack the ground space, and with containers being relatively small, they choose varieties that produce small fruits. Consider the requirements of the seed variety you choose. (The size of your container makes us think that you’ve growing a large one.)

let us know later in the year how all this works out. Good luck with it!




The container I am using is

The container I am using is one that I had from a plant I purchase and planted in the yard so it has good drainage. The soil I put in the planter is just Miracle Gro potting soil. I have some rabbit fencing I could lay on the black paper for the vines. There are two plants in the planter. Do you think I will have to add fertilizer as the growing season progresses?


Plan to fertilize with a general all-purpose produce when seedlings emerge, making sure to get it to the roots (use liquid, not solid fertilizer). Liquid seaweed fertilizer can be applied after leaves appear and once flowers emerge. Watermelons also benefit from nitrogen when vines begin to take off and when fruit appears. Use a 33-0-0, well diluted. Stop nitrogen applications when fruit has set and replace it with something high in phosphorus and potassium. Read more about these essential beneficial ingredients—and more—here: http://www.almanac.com/content/preparing-soil-planting


watermelon farming

Your write up is so educating, thank you. I'm interested in watermelon farming, how can I learn all I need to know about this? E.g . Best variaties of water melon, Favourable environment, Maturity period, Best farming seasons, Best fertilizers to be used, Planting methods e.t.c.
I live in Nigeria. I'll really appreciate your help in this regard. Thanks.
Ambrose Alufah

Water mellon farming

I am watermellon farmer i live in warri delta state nigeria. No variaty is bad it depends on ur kind of soil dare4 test


Go to Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds' website bakercreekseeds.com and they have a huge variety and all the information you could use. Also I'd say don't transplant your watermelons, squash and melons of all kinds like to stay put.

Growing Watermelons

Many thanks for your kind words.  Unfortunately, we can only give gardening advice for North America. The Old Farmer’s Almanac is only published in the U.S. and Canada, hence our expertise. However, there is much information above about watermelon planting and growing which should apply to you, regardless of region. All the best.


I am from the southern part of Nigerian, please I am interested in this watermelon farming and I need advice and guidance as to the following
1. Best variaties of water melon
2. Favourable environment
3. Maturity period
4. Best farming seasons
5. Best fertilizers to be used
6. Planting methods
7. Any other things I need to know
Thanks ...
Nosa Uyi


I am interested in growing watermelon, cucumber, okra, tomato and carrot so I am looking for any practical guide on organic farming resource with direct link to were the seeds can be sourced.

Is there anything wrong if i

Is there anything wrong if i plant water melon in November

Watermelon in November

There is nothing “wrong” with planting watermelon in November if you can be certain that summer conditions will prevail for the next 100-or-so days (the number of days to maturity will appear on the seed packet). If you are entering the winter season, now is not the time to plant watermelon outdoors.

watermelon rinds

I grew seeded watermelons. Had about 6-7 large melons per three plant hills. They weighed 15 to 20 pounds and were juice and very sweet. no complaints. But the rinds were at least a inch and half thick. Seemed excessive. Is there something that may cause rinds to be thicker. Just curious. Thanks


I grew seeded watermelons this summer. Can't remember the variety but had four to five 15 pound watermelons per hill of three plants. Turned out they were very sweet and juicy when we picked them. My concern was that the rind was at least one and a half inches thick.
Doesn't seem normal. Is there a reason for exceptionally thick rinds? We live in The Dalles, Oregon. Thanks.


I planted Sugar Baby Watermelon. It's growing very good. They are solid green but I'm not sure when to pick it. They do sound hollow now. Please advise

Hi - what is the reason that

Hi - what is the reason that my watermelon is white inside? It is not sweet and the seeds are white too. Not sure what type I got, I planted a seed from a store bought watermelon. The watermelons are oblong with stripes. I cut one off because it was getting rotten at the tip. It was about 3 lbs. I would appreciate your response. Thank you.

The watermeons at the grocery

The watermeons at the grocery store are most likely hybrids, which are a cross between two different varieties. When you plant a seed from a (non-sterile) hybrid, the resulting fruit may not come out exactly like the original fruit (may not "come true"). They might be like one parent plant, or something totally different. There are white-fleshed watermelons; perhaps a white-fleshed watermelon was an ancestor to the watermelon that you saved the seed from?

My watermelons are as big as

My watermelons are as big as a Granny Smith Apple
How much longer till mature?

Do you know what variety it

Do you know what variety it is? Do you still have the seed packet? They have a wealth of information on them like how many days it takes for the fruit to mature. I'd say that unless you have grown a watermelon that is supposed to be that small, you need to wait a little longer before harvesting. See the tests for maturity listed in the watermelon article above to know when it is time to pick it.

Rotten tip watermelons

This does happen with watermelons. For whatever reason some rot like this. It would have never reached maturity. I usually cut those kind off. Wait till the melon is yellowish on the bottom side then it is ripe.

I planted some jublie

I planted some jublie watermelons about 2 year's ago and they would sound ripe when thumped cut it open and still be green. Waited till the vine started to discolor same thing still green even went as far as the vein being rotting off and still green. A old timer told me I messed up when I limed my garden area I don't know if he was correct or not but most old farmers had been there done that and hardly ever wrong. I just wanted to get everyones input. I ended up plowing them up and didn't mess with it the following year and had some volunteers start growing and ended up geting a few ripe one's.

Your old farmer friend might

Your old farmer friend might be right! Watermelons like soil a little on the acidic side, a pH of 6-6.8 at the highest down to 5 at the lowest. Test your soil before you add any more amendments. The leaves produce sugars that help your watermelons to ripen. If they are dying off prematurely due to disease or insects the fruit doesn't stand of chance of ripening. Nothing is more disappointing than cutting into a melon you have been growing for months only to find that it is not ripe! Some tests, other than the thump test (which I have never perfected) are:
The tendril closest to the fruit will turn brown.
The fruit will twist off easily from the stem.
The white spot on the bottom of the fruit will turn yellow.
The rind of the melon will be dull green.
The vine nearest the end of the fruit will be cracked and brown.
The fruit should smell sweet when sniffed.
They should have a slight give when squeezed.

Hi, we planted watermelons

Hi, we planted watermelons this year, and do have watermelons growing pretty well. the problem is I keep finding some of my melons with eaten spots out of them, thinking a rabbit! Any ideas to keep him from eating them without hurting the rabbit? Is is possible if the eaten part isn't all the way thru the fruit,am I able to save any ot those? Thank you

You can fence off the melon

You can fence off the melon patch with chicken wire. Just be sure to bury it at least 6 inches deep around the edges to discourage them from digging underneath. Deterrants such as coyote urine or bobcat urine might scare them off. Blood meal can also be used to repel them. One industrious gardener builds hardware cloth cages that he places around each melon to protect it as it grows.
If the gnawing damage doesn't extend into the flesh, it might seal over naturally and continue to grow with no problem otherwise the hole will provide an entry place for all sorts of rot and disease.

Go to a barber shop or your

Go to a barber shop or your hairdresser and get some hair and put around yor garden it smells of human will deter the animals.

You can take a rag or towel

You can take a rag or towel and put ammonia on it or bar of soap and cut up in the garden area in multiple areas I have heard of hair working also heard of people peeing aroind the garden. Probley best thing is a couple a fake owels or something motion sensored. Fence works for smaller animals . But wont stop a deer they say to keep a deer out is to get a mesh like fenceing and fix it in a way laying flat about 1 to2 feet off the ground cause the deer has good height perception but have depth or width perception which ever way you look at in. | ----

For those that have continual

For those that have continual problems with deer, we use temporary electrtic fencing. When harvest is complete, we take it down and store it til next time

How long will watermelon

How long will watermelon continue to produce? I'm wondering when I should pull them to make room for fall garden. Will they keep producing into September?. I'm in central NC

Once the first watermelon is

Once the first watermelon is ripe, the others aren't usually far behind. Perhaps 10 days? It really depends on many factors, including the watermelon variety and the conditions. 

Can you grow a watermelon

Can you grow a watermelon using seeds from another watermelon?

Yes, you can plant the seed

Yes, you can plant the seed and it will grow. However, most grocery store watermelons are hybrids so the fruit will not be true to the parent and it's hard to say what you'll get. To grow watermelons, it's best to buy seed from a garden store or web site. Look for an open pollinated heirloom variety.

i was wondering if the

i was wondering if the watermelon fruit itself needs sunlight, my watermelons are heavily covered with their own leaves and are getting hardly any sunlight. should i try and clear out the leaves around the watermelon so that the fruit will get some sunlight or can they still stay covered with their leaves and still develop a good watermelon.

Great question, Booker! The

Great question, Booker! The melon will benefit from the shade of its leaves. Too much direct sun will cause sunscald, or sunburn, on the fruit. This kills rind cells and results in sunburnt pots. So leave the leaves alone! And thanks for asking.



How long is a watermelon

How long is a watermelon good. Should it be
refrigerated. My husband says it is alright to eat even after ten days.

Yes, watermelon in the

Yes, watermelon in the refrigerator should last about 2 weeks.

The question was freezer not

The question was freezer not refrigerator. No it will not keep in freezers well. When thawing a frozen watermelon the pulp becomes puffy in texture. The flavor changes as well. It is still eatable yet, stranger to the melon I want to eat.

Current temperatures in my

Current temperatures in my area are reaching 105 degrees and I have 6 beautifully growing watermelon plants in plastic garden trays. Is it to hot to transplant them??

Try to transplant when it's

Try to transplant when it's the coolest part of the day (evening) or when the skies are overcast. Water in well. Give the plants some temporary shade from the hot afternoon Sun on the first few days.

I stayed in Delta State I am

I stayed in Delta State I am interested in growing watermelon but don't know if it will germinate and produce well

I tried growing watermelons

I tried growing watermelons this year and followed the instructions for my area. I transplanted the healthy happy starts into black 3 gallon growing bags, kept in a hothouse/greenhouse. They got bigger for about a month and then all of a sudden got wilty. They have all died now and I am trying to figure out why they died. I didn't change anything and there are not insect infestations. Also there is a fan keeping the air circulated. Please help!

Not sure where you got the

Not sure where you got the plastic bag idea as a container for watermelon ... Watermelon are extremely deep-rooted plants and they like well-draining soil. Neither of those conditions would occur in a bag. The bag would effectively stunt the roots and would definitely hold water. (Depending on how you positioned the bags, even if they had drainage holes in them they might retain puddles.)
Here's some more advice. (It's from Arkansas, but it's watermelon growing basics so should apply if you are in Alaska): https://www.uaex.edu/publicati...

I planted Sugar Baby

I planted Sugar Baby watermelon seeds a few weeks ago and they all sprouted successfully. I just want to know if a watermelon plant can produce fruit for more than one season or do you have to plant a new vine each year?

You'll need to plant new

You'll need to plant new melons next year.

I am a first time watermelon

I am a first time watermelon grower from FIJI ISLAND.The first month,we were happy to see that our plants were all grown very well.Just reaching 2 months,we saw half of the plant turning yellow and started to loose its growth.the size of the fruits were not as big as expected.we planted about 1000 plants but things were not turned out as expected.We are not very happy because we spent our time in helping them grow and turning out this way.feeling very frustrated.

I live in PA and it was nice

I live in PA and it was nice been warm so I planted my watermelon seeds. They sprouted just one little was looking great. Then the past 2 days it went cold again. Tonight there is even a frost warning, its the end of may and frost warning. IS there anything I can do to make sure the watermelon survives?


You can put a trap over the

You can put a trap over the garden to keep the heat in overnight. Put the tarp on just as the sun starts to set and remove it first thing the next morning. Continue to do this until the frost warning has subsided.

There is a wonderful thing

There is a wonderful thing called ground cover you can put over your tender seedlings. It keeps cold weather, birds and bugs out, lets water, air and sunshine in. Keep it on until daytime temps reach 70°. It will protect tender plants and seedlings down below freezing,and allows plants to grow freely.

Hi, I just bought a Bonnie

Hi, I just bought a Bonnie watermelon plant and planted it on my balcony in North Carolina. It is in a large planter. I made sure I got good soil with fertilizer in it. It is not getting full sun rays on it all day, but the balcony is bright. I have watered it so the soil is always moist. I have had the plant for about a week and it has done nothing but wilt. Leaves are dying and drying off. What to do??? Can it be saved???

Hi, Jessica, As you know,

Hi, Jessica, As you know, "Bonnie" is a brand and there are several watermelon varieties offered within the brand family. In any case, when growing watermelon, soil temp should be above 70°F and FULL sun is essential; a "bright" balcony is just not going to be enough for watermelon. (Most edibles need FULL sun.) Without sun, the soil will not dry out. If the soil is always moist, as you say, the plant will effectively drown. That's why the leaves are falling off. Is there any plant you can put it—say, a friend's yard or a roof??—where it will get full sun and you will be able to get to it easily? You need to get it into sun, dry it out, and then water as needed. Good luck!

hello. have good ph soil and

hello. have good ph soil and have tilled it and fertilized with bunny berries and espoma garden fertilizer. is this plan suitable? first time growing watermelons. it is 30 ft by 4 ft plot. put two tall ridges along it long ways. plant watermelons approximately 3 ft from each plant on each ridge. will fit 20 plants. does that sound too close? fear.

Hi, I live in southwest

Hi, I live in southwest Georgia. Zone 8. I have tried for 3 years to grow watermelons, but they get about a pound and start to rot. They split, blister, and sometimes never make from the bloom. Any tips on growing full sized sweet watermelon? Thanks!

Hello, S-man: This could be

Hello, S-man: This could be any number of things. Possibly your fruit are not getting adequately pollinated (you can research how to help them). Possibly this is blossom end rot, which is caused by a chemical imbalance (lack of calcium) during development (again: research; your pH should be between 6.0 and 7.0). Possibly this could be the result of over- or inconsistent watering; water regularly and deeply, but only every 2 to 3 days. Mulch to help conserve moisture. Possibly this is a pest or disease, such as bacterial fruit blotch. We would say that the best thing to do is start from scratch. Take out the top 4 to 6 inches of soil to make sure that there are no diseases or diseased seeds remaining. Rebuild and care for meticulously, and you should have a melon patch that will treat you right forever. Thanks for asking!

I thought blossom end rot was

I thought blossom end rot was from a lack of magnesium, and Epsom salts would prevent it because it is pure magnesium

Hello there I am a first time

Hello there I am a first time watermelon grower this year. I planted Jubilee in mounds made of composted cow manure and topsoil. I have 6 sprouts so far and they are just starting to open but they are yellowish and I don't know why. The ones I planted inside were nice and green but these ones look as though they are dyeing already. I thought maybe it was too much or too little water? But I don't know how to tell. Please help!

Watermelons like loamy

Watermelons like loamy well-drained soil. Keep the soil moist but not too wet. The plants also need warm soil, they grow best if the soil temp. is 70F or more. Maybe your soil hasn't warmed up yet. Please see our planting and care tips on top of this page.

I live in Jamaica; I tried

I live in Jamaica; I tried planting watermelon twice during the rainy season and as soon as they started putting on blosoms they wilted. Is it that there were too much water on them or something else. Can you give me some advice please?

Hello! It's April 26 here in


It's April 26 here in Brooklyn. I bought and planted a watermelon seedling today. AFTER planting is I read that it is best to plant them when the ground has warmed to 70 degrees - so I'm guessing that will happen a month form now. Will this just be slow growth for the plant the first month or will it be detrimental....e.g. should i buy a new plant and start again in a month? Or perhaps even start indoors now from seed and have seedlings ready in a month.


Hi, Mark: Well, perhaps you

Hi, Mark: Well, perhaps you can take some solace in knowing that a lot of people never read the general notes anyway, at any time, so at least you found out rather than let yourself in for a big surprise! But you might still be OK. What cold does to a watermelon seedling is just stress it out, often for life, so it grows more slowly, has smaller fruit, etc. The first thing to do is protect your plant for the next few weeks: Cover it at night, protect it from wind, just sort of baby it. At the same time, go ahead and start another indoors for later transplanting. It's double the trouble, but you may end up with double the reward! Thanks for writing -- and for reading!

Hi Ive been trying to grow

Hi Ive been trying to grow several variates of watermelons 200 to 300 plaints a year for the last 10 years putting manure on in fall, working ground up well and deep. heeling rows up. not heeling. planting on a slop. less slop, less water, more water, no water. seem like tried almost every thing. they grow large fruit larger then store but just will not get ripe before the vines die even planted late last year. same thing.I live in Missouri the only thing i haven't tried is pruning the fruit and runners
Please help

Watermelons need warm soil to

Watermelons need warm soil to grow. Cover the garden with black plastic in the spring to speed up the warming so that you can plant a bit earlier. When watermelons start ripening put a piece of aluminum foil under the fruit to reflect the sun's rays. In late summer remove any blossoms that develop within 50 days of your first average frost date. This will help the larger fruit to ripen before frost.

I'm from Southern California

I'm from Southern California a good thing we do out here to develop sweet,ripe,and clean fruit is evenly lay black plastic down weigh it down with dirt or mulch do it won't move on you then poke holes in plastic and plant seed, plastic black plastic keeps soil 90 degrees and kills weeds,keeps fruit unprescidently clean and.you will have a high germination rate for direct sow.base watering of plant is advised once plant appears drip or soaker hose I have found to be the best and cost efficient

I am a first time grower and

I am a first time grower and I have planted watermelon its been two months and I still don't have a lot of stems yet can you please give me pointers and tips I also think I went the wrong way I sowed em like strawberry instead of hills of dirt did I do wrong how much do I water ? In need of help please

Am a first timer grower of

Am a first timer grower of water melons i planted a variety called sukari f1 and its doing very well but i just want to know the ripening period because as of now they are ten weeks old but last week i tried to cut one and see whether it was ready but i found out that it was still white though very sweet.

hi.how often should i spray

hi.how often should i spray pesticides on my crop? i have a problem with maggots tunneling inside my melons and making them rot..

You may have a pickleworm or

You may have a pickleworm or melonworm problem. Please see the website below for more information.

Want to also know how often i

Want to also know how often i should spray my melon.

about 90% of my water melon

about 90% of my water melon got bursted as they grew bigger and completely bad at maturity. some say the cause the seed I planted. please help me. what is the actual cause and remedy?

I wish to cultivate

I wish to cultivate watermelon. Am a new famer and needs assistance

Instead of spraying with

Instead of spraying with poison, try *food grade Diatomaceous Earth. It's an organic dust you can shake over all your garden. Works on aphids, cabbage borers..etc. I also use it around the house and it keeps ants and spiders OUT!

Diatomaceous Earth is good

Diatomaceous Earth is good for a lot of things, but please don't use it on any plant that is in bloom and is reliant on pollinators. It can kill the pollinator as easily as it can kill the pest. Honey bees can bring it back to the hive with pollen and distribute it through the colony. Please only use it where pollinators are not at risk.

am a Kenyan and a first time

am a Kenyan and a first time grower of watermelon for export. Please could you tell me which companies worldwide buys watermelon in large quantities and their contact.

I am interested in watemelon

I am interested in watemelon production. I will love to be taught the nitty gritty about it's seeds, planting season, weeding methods and all other principles that will give a better.yield.

hi im lydiah from kenya also

hi im lydiah from kenya also a first time grower and was curious on if you were able to get the names of the companies that buy melon

I would be interested in

I would be interested in buying the melon in large quantities
What would your price be? How much would you be shipping at a time?

@William Douglas, i can

@William Douglas, i can supply you watermelon.i am a nigerian,planning to start my watermelon commercial cultivation this september but i will get it from already established farms here in nigeria.my email is ajala_elijah@yahoo.com

Could you mail me your

Could you mail me your requirement?
I can Supply Watermelon from India

Can watermelon plant can be

Can watermelon plant can be grown in plastic paint bucket....

Hi, Nava: Five gallons is

Hi, Nava: Five gallons is usually considered the minimum volume necessary to successfully grow a watermelon plant in a pot, so a regular plastic paint bucket of a gallon or two probably would not be sufficient. Think big!

We have some watermelons

We have some watermelons growing without us doing any planting we just ate watermelons and spit the seeds outside and they grew we have no idea when they will be ready or how big there auppose to get hopefully we don't wait to long or pick them to quickly. Help

my watermelon plants are just

my watermelon plants are just now getting female flowers I'm afraid it's going to get too cold too soon is there any way to transplant them into the house using a trellis and a five pound bucket or will this just kill the plant anyway??

You can certainly try this,

You can certainly try this, but there is a possibility that it might shock the plant enough that it will die. You would also need to hand-pollinate the flowers (use a paintbrush to transfer pollen from a male flower to a female flower). Allow 8 hours of sun per day, and keep up with watering until fruit is fully developed. Keep temperatures warm.
Or, you might try keeping the plants outdoors and carefully placing black plastic down on the ground around the plant to help keep the soil warm. Also, put row covers over the plants to help protect them from frost; remove the row covers during the warm parts of the day so that pollinators can find the flowers, but put them back on as temperatures cool for the day and keep them on overnight. In either case, good luck!

I grow various melons (musk,

I grow various melons (musk, honeydew and watermelons). My melons are successful and watermelons are not. The 2 main issues are odd shape and not growing to full size. I will note that the taste is unaffected and although they are small and mis-shapen, they taste great. But i'm growing melons that should reach 15-20lbs and only get them 2-4 lbs.

I will also note that my musk/honeydew melons reach normal size and shape.

I have heavy clay soil - but I plant the watermelons in hills that contain mostly bagged compost. Is this insufficient in terms of getting them enough food to grow?

I water deeply at least 1x per week with a soaker hose.

Any ideas why my melons come out great and watermelons are runts?

Sandy soil is much better

Sandy soil is much better than clay when growing watermelons. They have long tap roots and grow deep into the soil for nutrients. You can grow them larger by adding lots of compost to the clay soil. And do not let the plant set too many melons. Leave only about two per plant.

I picked one of my melons to

I picked one of my melons to see if it was ripe,and when I cut it ,it was a yellowish orange. I tasted it was very sweet, but I don't know if it had to turn red or not. Can someone help me?

There are watermelon

There are watermelon varieties which have yellow flesh inside. Otherwise, just see our tips above to know when it's best to harvest watermelons. Of course, if you liked the taste, it doesn't matter!

only two melons per

only two melons per plant..what time? in the begining or in the end choosing melons?or good fruit or any melon choosing two melon per plant?

How to cut the main vine for

How to cut the main vine for the watermelon what the main vine means

how many hills can i plant on

how many hills can i plant on one acre of land

It really depends. We'll let

It really depends. We'll let you do the math but you'll want 6 to 8 feet between hills on bare ground without irrigation. With irrigation, use a spacing of 5 to 6 feet between hills. With plastic mulch and trickle irrigation, use an in-row spacing of 3 feet and between-row spacing of 6 to 8 feet. The amount of seed required (usually 1 to 2 pounds per acre) depends upon seed size, germination and plant spacing.

pls, where do I get

pls, where do I get watermelon seeds for planting

I am having a problem with my

I am having a problem with my watermelons not getting completly ripe but have started to rot inside. I just cut one open and it is not completely red and is rotting. I live in Oklahoma, Edmond area. Help I do not know what is going on with my crop.

Thank You,

I'm in the UK and for the

I'm in the UK and for the first time I'm growing water melons. The plant is in the greenhouse and was doing well. There is one melon (about 4 inches in diameter) and three or four smaller fruits. However, the plant seems to be dying with the leaves going brown and any shoots with flowers seem to be withering.
I water every day with the addition of Tomerite. Can anyone help as I haven't got a clue what to do next?

Only water every 2-3 days

Only water every 2-3 days

Hi, I grow about 1/2 acre of

Hi, I grow about 1/2 acre of assorted watermelon varieties. Years past have been great in flavor and quality. This year, they all seem to be going "Dead" before they are ripe according to tendril and yellow belly. The few we have cut a little early don't have much flavor. We are barely watering them, just enough to keep alive. Nice composted ground, black plastic and drip tape. Not sure what could be causing this problem. Any other advise on this?

I got some weedkiller on one

I got some weedkiller on one of my watermelon plants it turned a whitesh gray so is it dead or will it pull out of it

If you got weedkiller on your

If you got weedkiller on your fruit, I wouldn't eat the fruit.

Please i need detail

Please i need detail guidiance on the proper management of watermelone to ensure maximum growth and yield.

I have two watermelons thumb

I have two watermelons thumb size. How fast will they grow and how long will it take before picking?

Hi Jacqueline, If you planted

Hi Jacqueline,
If you planted your watermelons from seed the days to maturity should be printed on the seed packet. How fast your melons will mature all depends on what variety you have and your climate. Watermelons love hot weather. Generally, watermelons are ready to be picked about 65 to 90 days after sowing.

I planted watermelon seeds

I planted watermelon seeds from a yellow watermelon that I bought. It is spouting fast but someone told me that seeds from a watermelon don't usually produce melons. Am I wasting my time? Or should I let it continue to grow?

It depends. If your

It depends. If your watermelon came from a grocery store, it likely was a hybrid (a cross between two watermelon varieties). In this case, the watermelons that come from that seed may be different from the parent melon and may have inferior characteristics (such as poor quality, taste, etc). Sometimes, something better than the parent might form, but that's rare. If you think your seeds came from a hybrid, and want to just grow the plant to see what develops, good or bad, then continue to grow it.
If, on the other hand, you got a watermelon from a farmer's market, and you know that it was an open-pollinated variety (a cross between plants of the same variety), the seeds will likely come true to type, having the same features as the parent. In this case, if you continue to grow the plant, it most likely will produce fruit like the original watermelon (providing it has the proper light, nutrients, water, temperature, etc.).

Hi. I have several watermelon

I have several watermelon vines doing great, got lots of flowers, half of the fruit died as expected when pea-sized, but I still have about 6 fruit the size of baseballs/softballs across 6 different vines. I thought they were doing great until I noticed over this past week it doesn't look like they are getting any larger. There is only one that I can say is definitely getting larger. the other 5 stay about the size of a baseball or softball. Should I cut the main vine past the fruit to focus energy on the fruit? The vines are still actively growing....thanks!!

Yes, it is a good idea to

Yes, it is a good idea to prune the vines to focus the energy to the growing watermelons. Water more frequintly and feed them a high-phosphorus fertilizer.

I am growing watermelons for

I am growing watermelons for the first time this year. I live in Southern California and it has been fairly hot. I also have an irrigation system that waters them every day for several minutes twice a day. My vines are going crazy and I have seen a lot of fruit starting on the plants. I have just noticed that the fruit is falling off the plant when it gets to be about an inch or two long. Also, they are fairly oval in shape. Even at this tiny stage, they already look like watermelons with the lines and markings on them and they are staying green (not turning yellow or any other color) when they fall off. I have read the previous questions and comments and the only conclusion I can come to is poor pollination. I have seen many bees (even the tiny little ones) all throughout my garden and all of my other veggies and fruits are thriving. Could this just be due to poor pollination or do I need to water more or less? Thank you in advance.

Young fruit falling off may

Young fruit falling off may be due to several factors, usually about pollination. Even though pollinators may visit the flowers, the fruit can develop for a time but then stop. A flower is viable for only about a day, and pollinators must visit it about 7 times for best pollination results. If the fruit aborts or becomes misshapen, the pollinators may not have transferred enough pollen; perhaps not enough visited the flower due to bad weather conditions (too cool or hot, too windy or rainy).
High heat (above 90F) for several days may hurt the pollen, so that the plant eventually rejects the growing fruit. In this case, you may get more flowers later, for further fruits to develop in better weather.
If you have a seedless watermelon type, you'll need to plant a seeded type nearby that blossoms at the same time for proper pollination and fruit set.
Watermelons should be watered deeply, about 1 to 2 inches per week, as well as more during a drought or high heat. Be consistent especially during fruit development. Drip irrigation is best. For overhead irrigation, water during the morning so that the leaves can dry during the day, to discourage diseases.
Too much water will make a bland tasting melon. Too little water may stunt the plant and cause misshapen fruit, but it doesn't sound like your plants are lacking water.

My watermelons are just

My watermelons are just starting to get big. The biggest one i have is a little bigger than a baseball. Yesterday my fiance was weed eating and hit the largest watermelon. I almost cried. Truthfully, i did cry. I love these plants. He cut 3 gashes into it, is there anyway i can save it?? And do i need to keep them on the ground? The vines are climbing the fence and i have some fruitbon them. Do i need to get them off the fence?? Thanks!!

I'm a first time grower. I

I'm a first time grower. I planted watermelon plants in april 2014 ;I live in Mem.TN. I have vines all over the place but,everytime my yellow flowers bloom on the vines,the next day they are gone. Please tell me what I am doing or not doing right?

Hi, Jacqueline: If you

Hi, Jacqueline: If you haven't espied any insects or slugs, it's possible that what you are doing right is providing a nice, free, all-you-can-eat buffet for a woodchuck or deer -- or maybe even a reallllly hungry rabbit. Try fencing around and above, plus some sort of noise-making, lit mini scarecrow -- er, scarechuck.

how long will the vines

how long will the vines produce fruit after first melons are picked ?

Watermelons often produce 2

Watermelons often produce 2 to 3 fruits per plant. Once they start fruiting, it happens fairly quickly. Perhaps they grow within 10 days of each other. It all depends on the variety.

This is my first time growing

This is my first time growing watermelon and I didn't think they would grow to be so long. Can I wrap them around a stick vertically or do they have to grow close to the ground? I only ask because it seems like they would be able to get more sunlight that way since I planted them in a tiny garden. Thanks!

Hi, Tasha: You most certainly

Hi, Tasha: You most certainly can grow watermelons vertically, but you will most likely need something bigger than a stick for each. Try to make some sort of trellis or latticework for the vines to grow on. Be creative. Maybe an old stepladder, for example, if you don't have a "real" trellis. Or a bunch of branches tied together. Our neighbor used an old metal bed headboard. Three rules: 1. Make sure that your support structure is strong. 2. Make (and adjust) slings for your melons out of panty hose, mesh produce bags, or the like and tie the slings to the structure, not the vine. 3. Use strips of fabric or some other gentle way to tie your vines to the structure and give them support as they grow longer/taller. Oh ... 4. Let us know when they're ripe -- we'll be right over!

Will black plastic be okay

Will black plastic be okay under melon vines? I want to use it to control weeds but I do not want to burn the vines from the sun.

Black plastic is fine for

Black plastic is fine for heat-loving melons, and will cut down on the weeds. You would need to make sure that the plants get enough water, though, as this material is not water permeable. In very high heat, though, it might cause plant damage. If temperatures are above 90F, add shade cloth over the plants or add straw over the black plastic to keep the surface temperature cooler. Remove once air temperatures cool.

I planted some watermelons

I planted some watermelons about a month or two ago and so far little green leaves have popped up but it seems like they are growing really slowly. What can I do to help it speed up?

Just make sure your

Just make sure your watermelons have lots of sunshine, good circulation (not crowded), and plenty of water. Watermelons do start out a bit slow and don't really take off until the temps have been consistently high and then watch out! They take off.

I have planted 14 crimson

I have planted 14 crimson sweet watermelon seedlings in an incorrect spacing however, the plants are small right now. Should i remove most of the seedlings, how many? and what is thining and how do you thin the plants? Thanks

If your seedlings are

If your seedlings are established, thin to the best 3 plants per hill. By thin, we mean remove the seedling. You don't want it to be crowded or the plants will complete for nutrients and none of them will thrive.



Thisis my first time growing

Thisis my first time growing watermelon. I planted two plants per hill in two hills. Anyways there are big plants with yellow flowers that are now probably two feet high right where I planted the melons. There are now finally some vines growing too. Are the big plants in the middle weeds are part of the melon plant?? I thought watermelon just grew off big vines like pumpkins? Please help, I don't know if I should pull these or if they are part of the melon plant itself.

The two-foot high flowering

The two-foot high flowering thing does not sound like watermelon. You are correct: watermelon would be a vine that pretty much creeps across the soil. Instead of pulling the invader and risking upsetting the watermelon's roots, cut it as close to the soil like as you can (be careful not to nip the vine). Do that as often as needed. Good luck with the melons!

What can I do to keep

What can I do to keep groundhog from eating ? my melons.Does the vine end have to dryup before watermelon is ripe?

I've used garlic, rosemary,

I've used garlic, rosemary, dried blood; extracts that are commercially available or homemade. They work for one day. The best deterrent is a moving or inanimate object. I use pinwheels, balloons, and a dog cutout that pivots like a weather vane(I've heard fake owls work also). It works well with deer and rabbits (so far this year anyway).

Why did my watermelon split

Why did my watermelon split on the underside. How can I prevent the others from doing the same?

Reduce watering amount as the

Reduce watering amount as the fruits ripen to improve flavor. Even watering is extremely important especially in the last 2 weeks of growth. Excessive watering at this stage can cause the fruits to split.

I'm confused as to when to

I'm confused as to when to water after it begins to grow. Have not had rain but told shouldn't rain unless very dry because watermelons have deep roots.

Watermelons need a lot of

Watermelons need a lot of water. In fact, water makes up 92% of the fruit. Instead of frequency, go by the moistness of your soil. You want to always have the soil moistened to a depth of 6 inches, given those deep roots. Watermelons need an immense amount of water during fruit set and development.



They are most likely not

They are most likely not pollinated. If a pea size watermelons form but don't get any bigger than the size of a gumball than they are not pollinated.

I have a quick question, I

I have a quick question, I have watermelon plants that just fruited. They have pea sized watermelons on them and I wanted to know how long before they would be ready to harvest?

Sorry but my kids are excited and I want to be able to tell them about how long before they were ready to pick and eat. Thank you in advance to whoever can answer my question.

Its a hard thing to say

Its a hard thing to say because there are many variables involved. If the fruit that you see gets pollinated and starts growing from my experience you can try to pick the first one that started to form around the beginning of September or late august. My grandparents parents and me have grown watermelons and that's kind of what we've always did.

Amanda, I too have a very

Amanda, I too have a very impatient nephew who just cant wait too eat "his watermelon" so what I did was played a little trick on him. I kept him out of the garden for a few days & went to the store and bought a small melon and put it in the garden, then I took him out to "harvest his melon" Amd explained that it's going too be a while until another one is ready to eat..WORKED LIKE A CHARM !!

what color seed do u need too

what color seed do u need too grow them?

I am growing watermelon for

I am growing watermelon for the first time and I have a bunch that have turned black on the ends. Why is that? Thank you.

Blossom-end rot is caused by

Blossom-end rot is caused by a calcium deficiency in the fruit and occurs when the plants are subjected to drought stress or too much water. Too much nitrogen rich fertilizer may also cause black spots.

Can someone please help me?

Can someone please help me? I'm fairly new to growing fruit and as i'm in the UK i'm trying,yet again,to grow watermelon in my greenhouse.The plants have grown well again this year but the fruits aren't as big as a pea.What do i need to do? Getting very frustrated now.

Have you hand pollinated the

Have you hand pollinated the flowers? In a greenhouse, you likely will not have enough pollinators, so you need to do hand pollination to get fruit. The larger female flowers will have a slight bulge at the base (perhaps the pea fruit that you see?), even though they are not pollinated. They will not grow further, however, until pollinated. In the morning (best time), take a small male flower and rub its pollen (on the anther) onto the stigma of the larger female flower (the top of the central structure in the female flower). You can use a small paintbrush for this, or just gently rub the two flowers directly. Do this for all female flowers (using several male flowers).

A watermelon vine came up in

A watermelon vine came up in my back yard. I just let it grow and is huge. have watered but have fed it only once. Tons of blossoms. no fruit. Where it is growing was at one time a compost heap a few years back. It has been blooming for about a month but I do not see any baby melons. What should I do?

If you do not see flowers of

If you do not see flowers of different sizes (small and large), then they are likely all male flowers (the small types). The larger female flowers should start to appear soon. If pollinated, the female flowers will form the fruit.
If you do have both male and female flowers, it could be that you do not have enough pollinators. In this case, you might want to try hand pollination. To do this, in the morning (best time), take some of the smaller male flowers and rub some of their pollen (on the anther) onto the top of the tall structure in the center of the larger female flower (top part is called the stigma).

My watermelon plants have

My watermelon plants have grown quite nicely. I have six plants each of red and yellow varieties. The yellow ones all have one watermelon in each plant while the red ones have one on two of the plants. However as I live in MALTA we are now experiencing scorching heat (average 31 degrees celcius). Should I cover the plant or watermelons to protect them? Some watermelons have already grown to tennis ball size. Also, shall I water them every day and how much water (in Litres please) by water can. Final query. Can the plants have more than one watermelon? Thank you.

I have a 20 X 20 raised bed

I have a 20 X 20 raised bed melon patch to ensure perfect soil conditions, a tilled combination of top soil, compost and sand. Using mounds about 24 inches in diameter,and 4 feet apart, I plant a circle of 6 seeds around the center of each mound. My question is how many plants should I leave (thinning) once they are up and I have established the stronger ones. Should I leave all 6, thin the mound to only 2 to 3 plants per mound, or leave just one? Thank you

Sounds like a perfect setup

Sounds like a perfect setup for your watermelons! Once the seedlings emerge and you've determined which are the stronger ones, you can thin to 2 or 3 vigorous plants per mound. Happy gardening!

Of course it is it's amazing

Of course it is it's amazing

I have two different

I have two different varieties of watermelon and certain plants are growing faster than other plants. I was considering hybridizing them, so my question is this: will the plants continually produce male and female flowers throughout the growing season or does each plant need to be roughly the same age so that they flower at same time? Also, some of the same plant variety are emerging from the soil about 4 to 6 days after their brothers and sisters. I'm new to growing watermelons, but who doesn't love a couple slices of watermelon during the summer. Thank you for your assistance. :-)

Watermelons have separate

Watermelons have separate male and female flowers on the SAME plant so they don't need another plant to pollinate. What they need are the pollinators—the bees. Watermelons do cross-pollinate with other watermelon varities. If you do decide to encourage cross-pollination, then I imagine you would want flowers opening around the same time. The female watermelon flowers do not open for very long and this is a morning event. You can always hand pollinate by plucking off a healthy male flower, removing its petals, and wiping the pollen on its stamen on to the center of the female flower. Note that you will not have a hybrid in this first generation. You need to save the seeds from the crossed melon and plant them next season to see what you get!

My watermelons are developing

My watermelons are developing both male and female flowers, but the plants are still quite small. Should I pinch off the flowers to let the vines develop more, or is it fine for them to put out flowers despite being fairly small? (I would say square foot large plants.) I grew watermelon last year and the vines were huge and sprawling, so I'm a little concerned despite the vines otherwise looking very healthy.

I'm going to be planting

I'm going to be planting watermelon next year and I want to make sure everything is perfect so I can have an excellent and successful harvest. :)
Using a tool provided by our local university I have found the watermelon seeds recommended for my area. However since I have never grown a watermelon before I don't know which of these watermelons are the sweetest.

Charleston Gray
Crimson Sweet
Tendersweet (Orange)

The only one I think is sweet (based off a youtube video I saw of this harvest) is the Jubilee watermelon. Any thoughts/help on this? Thank you :)

I don't know every variety

I don't know every variety but there are some very sweet watermelons on your list (Crimson Sweet, Jubilee) based on this reference chart which lists the "Brix" sweetness level: 

The tendersweet orange is the

The tendersweet orange is the sweetest with crimson sweet after that.

I have probably 10 water

I have probably 10 water melon plants growing in a 30 gallon container, can i just let them spill from the container and ramble on the ground?

Watermelon plants should be

Watermelon plants should be spaced 3 to 5 feet apart.

I am in the southern part of

I am in the southern part of Nigeria, i planted watermelon and it started well, but after producing fruit, It started rusting and some are even cracking. Please what can i do to prevent these terrible damage to my farm? at least almost 45 percent of the fruits are affected, please help.

It sounds like charcoal rot.

It sounds like charcoal rot. There are no effective controls for this fungus. Try altering irrigation to prevent water stress. This may alleviate the problem.

First looks like you don't

First looks like you don't give enough water and food to them, you must prepare you soil before planting, make a canal about 1 feet deep x 2 feet wide, start with manure mix with hay or grass, then put some sand and after mix good dirt with compost, try to make elevated beds for them about a feet high you can plant 4 plants in a 9 feet bed in between you can plant beans or peas to feed the grown, then live 9 feet free where you can plant other crops, and again 4 watermelons in a 9 feet bed, if you need more information about Poly Culture feel free to contact me B r o t h e r a y i n j e s u s at p r i e s t dot c o m I will be more than happy to help you! I hope this tip help a lot of people. The Peace of Our Good Lord Be with You All!

We live in Central fl, and

We live in Central fl, and planted jubilee water melons in grow box's. have 3 and 4 vines in both box's.
Have lots of fruit the size of quarters now, doing well. The leaves are looking a little dry and some look wilted. We water 2 times a day down the tubes. When planting we added a rather large row of slow release Fertilizer down the middle. Do I need to do any thing else?

Make sure the water is at the

Make sure the water is at the proper level (including, not too high). Watermelons may wilt during the heat of the day, but should perk back up at night. If not, check for pests such as aphids or squash bugs, or the squash vine borer. Fusarium wilt can also cause vines to wilt at midday, with leaf margins drying, but hopefully that's not the case with your plants. As the plants grow, they will need support--provide trellising, and support the fruit as it grows.

i have about three acres of

i have about three acres of watermelon can be able to get a good market were i can sale at once.

Are Carlina cross sweet

Are Carlina cross sweet melon.? 1st time farmer

Carolina Cross is a giant

Carolina Cross is a giant watermelon. You can see an example on www.burpee.com/

I live here in South Florida,

I live here in South Florida, Zone 10,
I planted watermelon 1 month ago, March, I have a nice vine growing now. How much direct sun should this plant get? Should I have it grow on the ground or set up a trellis?

Watermelons grow in full Sun

Watermelons grow in full Sun and love hot, humid weather and light, moist, fertile, well-draining soil. During harvest, watermelons must be shaded from burning sunlight to minimize heating and sunburn. The dense leaves help provide that shade.
Many people just grow the melons on the ground, however trellising would improve air circulation and reduce disease problems. If growing melons on a trellis, support fruit with slings made from netting, fabric, or pantyhose. Choose a smaller-fruited variety for trellising.

I have planted water melons

I have planted water melons at the Kenyan coast.They're turning yellow before even growing fruits.What can i do to remedy this?

Newbie here. Have started

Newbie here. Have started seedlings indoors and done built our raised boxes. Live outside of Houston Texas. We have 4 4x4 boxes, and We did kind of a wrap around box that is 8 ft on left and right and 24 feet in the back but 2 ft wide. Wanting to know best place to plant what where. I am doing watermelon and cantaloupe. was hoping the long 24 ft but 2 feet wide with maybe a trellises on the back would be enough room but doubting myself. Cucumbers I thought would go in its own 4x4 box. And then we also have tomatoes, onions, broccoli, carrots, green beans. I am maybe wanting to do another box of undecided size for strawberries, and maybe blueberries if they grow well here. My boyfriend, wants to get the miracle grow soil, and I want reassurance that is enough fertilizer and whatever is needed to use for soil and I am digging up the ground beneath the boxes to get rocks,grass and roots out. And we are going to use newspaper and cardboard to line in between. Anything you see that I shouldn't do or make any suggestions would be helpful. Thanks in advance. :)

You can use trellises for the

You can use trellises for the vining melons and the cucumbers. Just be aware that the melons may need extra support when the fruit starts developing. Cucumbers will do well on a trellis. Mix compost and/or aged manure into the soil in the raised beds. Make sure that the soil drains well. During the growing season you can add more compost or use fertilizers for the specific needs of the different veggies and berries. Note that blueberries need acidic soil.
almanac.com/content/raised-garden-beds-how-build has more information about raised bed gardening.

I grow using raised square

I grow using raised square foot gardening methods as well. I use 1 melon per foot. I do clip side vines and try to keep to 2 vines max per plant. I made some adjustments to my beds. My melon beds have an 8 foot tall trellis made with three 2x4s and chicken wire. A cattle panel would work well too. The net fell last year due to weight of the melons. The 2 foot bed will be fine. I wrap my vine up, over, down, then back up again tying the vine gently every few inches for support. A cattle panel would probably allow you to wind the vine in and out, but I used what I had. I get better results with the stronger trellis. I wouldn't go more than 4 feet without a 2x4. We helped our friends put together their square foot garden beds and they bent the cattle panels over from one bed to another in an arch and planted shade loving veggies under it. Works well. Slanting it would help support fruit too. Hope this gives you some ideas.

What is the best soil for

What is the best soil for growing watermelons? I hear sandy type soil, but I never heard anyone mention the names of the soil, and where it can be purchased? Example, can you give me an example of sandy type soil? What other minerals need to be added?


Hi Matt, Watermelons like

Hi Matt,

  • Watermelons like rich soil that drains well. Amend the soil with aged manure or compost before planting. If you have clay soil you can mix some sand into it. Watermelons are heavy feeders and prefer a soil pH between 6 and 6.8.

I live in kenya, coast

I live in kenya, coast province, specifically kilifi. I want to plant watermelon. when is the right time to do that

the right time would be just

the right time would be just before the end of the short rains to allow for germination and early vegetative growth using available rainwater .
For more info contact me at siyulesi@gmail.com. Am in Kitale Kenya working as an agronomist.

approximadetly how many

approximadetly how many watermelon plants can you grow in 1 acre of land how many fruits does each plant harvest ,thank you

The fruit size of a

The fruit size of a watermelon varies from 5 to 30 pounds, depending on variety. See this page for more information about producing watermelons for market:

I am presently in Nigeria and

I am presently in Nigeria and about to start watermelon for the first time. Is this the right time for me to start planting. Here we have two seasons(Rainy season and Dry Season). We are presently in the dry season when we have much sunlight and higher temperature. is it compulsory I have to raise them in the nursery before transplanting them?

i grew my mellons five days

i grew my mellons five days ago,which pesticides should i use and when.

Does underground salty water

Does underground salty water suitable for watering watermelon?

No . They will not grow if

No . They will not grow if the water has too much salt . Even ground water .

i hope you will answer

i hope you will answer

I am planning on planting

I am planning on planting water melon here in Kenya however my concern is the climate of the area i want to farm. Its at the foot of Mt. Kenya and the temperatures are very low and especially during the rainy season. Generally its a cold place. Would watermelons do well in such climate? What advice would you give to a first time farmer like me and considering the climate i intend to work under.

Thank you. Will be grateful for the feedback.

No . Watermelons want a warm

No . Watermelons want a warm climate ..21-37 c. If you would like to grow a crop there . Just tell me a few things about your farm . Exposure when is you longest day of the year . When is your rainy season . When is your dry season water source ? Flat or hillside ? Mark

I would like to see the video

I would like to see the video on the square watermelon, or how , or what to use to make it that way...

Hi I'm trying growing

Hi I'm trying growing watermelons in the greenhouse in Kenya.The most obvious challenge here is limited space.After my first harvest,I realized I have to invest heavily in pruning.An experiment I carried out on the same revealed that watermelon can actually be made to have two stages of growth,i.e primary and secondary stage.I am still working on the research that is aimed to produce nothing but extra large fruits for competition.
I just needed to know if you can help me with some tips,please.

Hello, What is the

What is the temperature in the greenhouse?
We planted seeds in April in an old bathtub in specialized vegetable soil, and the vines started coming up in the next couple of months.
You WILL need plenty of space because the vines get very long.
We also tried transplanting some of the vines and those died very quickly because they weren't watered as often, so they dried up.
We had a VERY hot summer so we had to water twice a day.

So, Miracle-Gro or fertilized soil, Plenty of sunlight, warm temperature, and water once a day. DO NOT over-water, too much and the vines will drown.

After the peak of harvest, we had some vines sprout in the soil patch of an old chicken coop. We had fed them some rinds and they digested the seeds!

Good luck. I am also looking to try a greenhouse for watermelon. Let me know the results!

I'm growing watermelons for

I'm growing watermelons for the first time and i think i'm doing o.k. After so many weeks i finally got my first watermelon fruit growing. As it's growing bigger i'm starting to wonder if i actually did do o.k because it's growing like the shape of a pear. What does that mean?

Usually, an odd melon shape

Usually, an odd melon shape is related to poor pollination which can happen because of weather conditions, lack of bees, or too little pollination. You can always try pollinating by hand by using a Q-tip to transfer pollen from the male to female flower.

Thanks alot for the tips.Iam

Thanks alot for the tips.Iam anew farmer and planted my watermelon this season,I didn't know anything about watermelon growing but just planted as a test.

It is mid September and my

It is mid September and my watermelon are not ripe yet? It is starting to get cool and I am worried that my babies might go bad before they ripen. They are in great sun and morning temps are in 60's for now. When should I get worried?

Watermelons require a longer

Watermelons require a longer growing season with constant warm temperatures--which is why the plant favors the southern regions and can be a challenge to grow in northern regions. At this point, you can try to cut back any leaves that block the sun and stop providing water to speed up the ripening process. However, the day length is shortening as we near the autumnal equinox and nature is taking its course.
If you try again next year, you've gained some learning. Consider using transplants and selecting early varieties with short growing seasons. Mulch with black plastic film to warm the soil. Use floating row covers to protect from cooler temps.

I mistakenly cut the vine of

I mistakenly cut the vine of my watermelon. Is there any chance I can get the vine to stay alive until the melon ripens? If so, what should I do?

Did you completely cut the

Did you completely cut the main vine? If so, there's not much you can do. The watermelon can no longer receive the nourishment and water and will stop growing. If it's just a slit, then you could try some pine tree gum and duct tape!

Yes, unfortunately it's all

Yes, unfortunately it's all the way through. I figured there wouldn't be anything I could do. Thank you very much for replying. I'll be much more careful in the future. :)

My watermelons are getting

My watermelons are getting big, about the size of a cantaloupe, but none have stripes. I think I have 'Sugar Baby' watermelons. Does that variety get stripes?

Sweet Baby Watermelon has

Sweet Baby Watermelon has district stripes when immature and become almost black when ripe.  A Bush Sugar Baby has a dark green rind with no stripes.

My watermelons never seem to

My watermelons never seem to ripen. I keep checking them but no ripe melons. I have had actual melons growing for 4 months. Cut them open and still not rip. This happens every year. What am I not doing? Can't seem to grow radishes either. Thanks.

We can only suspect the

We can only suspect the weather conditions. Melons need heat to ripen properly. Cool cloudy weather in the spring will slow down thier development. Also, have you used plenty of fertilizer and water? Watermelon plants are heavy feeders.

You provide spectacular

You provide spectacular information on this website. Thank you for your help!

How many melons can be

How many melons can be harvest from a single vine. This is my first time gardening watermelons. I have followed every step one by one. I lived in Puerto Rico and the temperature is aroumd 90 degrees all year around.

There are lots of opinions

There are lots of opinions about how many watermelons to expect—or let grow—on one vine. Consider that if several fruits get started, it might be to your benefit to remove the weakest or smallest ones, so that a few do very well. Of course, in your environment, many may do very well. Watch your plants and decide as they appear and grow.

I have a lot of watermelons,

I have a lot of watermelons, some that are older than others are smaller than the newer ones? And I can't figure out when they will be ready to harvest? They have been growing for a couple months now and they are still white on the bottom?

Water melon do not slip from

Water melon do not slip from the vine or give off an odor to indicate they they are ripe. People use all kinds of methods: First, check your seed packet for the number of days to maturity, consider when you planted these and count the days since then. Some say that a "waxy" rind means a watermelon is ripe. The "thump" test involves knocking on the rind with a knuckle and listening for a dull, muffled sound. (Some say a watermelon always sounds dull and muffled when rapped that way.) White colr means only that that side was away from the sun.
When you harvest your melon, cut it from the stem, do not pull it, and do it in the morning.

My volunteer melon was

My volunteer melon was growing well, until placed on a flat brick. It grew for a.couple of days, then stopped. I checked the bottom and it had split. What happened?

Oh, so sorry to hear.

Oh, so sorry to hear. Typically excessive watering or heavy rain will cause a ripening watermelon to split.
The rule of thumb is water less as the melon is ripening; this improves flavor.

hi. I live in south Texas and

hi. I live in south Texas and it's my first time planting watermelon, and I was wondering how you could keep bugs away and some tips. thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

how offten should i water the

how offten should i water the melons when they have gotten a little big but not ready to come off yet.

Water your melons until one

Water your melons until one week or so before you're ready to harvest. At this point, stop watering in order to sweeten the melon's taste. The same goes for feeding/fertilizer.

I am a first time grower and

I am a first time grower and just realized that I will need to hand pollinate. I have three females that are getting ready to flower. If the pollination takes, is it too late for them to grow and ripen before fall? I live in northern Ohio so we can never tell if we will have an early autumn or not.

I did not pollinate my

I did not pollinate my flowers and they are bearing fruit! Do you not have bee's in Ohio?

Or bugs for the matter?

Or bugs for the matter?

I pollinated the females and

I pollinated the females and now have 5 melons growing! I have plenty of bees but they aren't interested. Will they have time to ripen before fall?

If your melons are growing,

If your melons are growing, the bees already did their job pollinating. Check your seed packet for days to maturity to get a sense of timing.

I am growing where there

I am growing where there really arent any bees . . . is the only way to get watermelon to pollinate them myself with a Q-tip?

You can use a Q-tip or select

You can use a Q-tip or select a newly opened male flower and gently remove the petals surrounding the male stamens. Brush them against a nearby female flower 10 to 15 times. Hand pollination requires patience and may be effective only 50 percent of the time; bees are a far more effective option. Also, research shows that hand pollination is most effective between 6am and 9am.

I have four boys who wanted

I have four boys who wanted to try planting something from seed, so last fall I was busy and gave them some watermelon seeds from the watermelon we had gotten at the store. Well, we now have a watermelon plant with about six watermelon on them. I have been reading the posts and have gotten most of my answers but I still have one. Should I try to expose the watermelon that are under the foliage or just let them sit where they are? Thanks!

Sun on the melon is not as

Sun on the melon is not as important as sun on the plant. Leave it go for now and give the plant lots of water, a drip hose, if possible, except of course when it rains. If you have several melon on the same vine, you might have better luck with one strong one by sacrificing the others.

I am a grower as well and

I am a grower as well and have not heard if moving the melon helps or not. However while weed picking, I typically rearrange the vines to expose the fruit and even sometimes rotate them. I have not seen a negative effect from doing this.

I live in New York. This is

I live in New York. This is my first time planting watermelon. We started getting male flowers last week, but the female flowers haven't opened yet. How long does it take for them to bloom?

Every seventh flower on a

Every seventh flower on a plant vine is female. Flowers open one to two hours after sunrise and female flowers are receptive to pollen throughout the day, although usually pollination occurs by noon. Flowers close in the afternoon and never reopen, pollinated or not.

How long from flowering stage

How long from flowering stage to ripe fruit?

I live in Tennessee & i

I live in Tennessee & i bought 6 watermelon plants in June. I planted them on June 5. When should i expect to see watermelon start to come out. There are many yellow flowers on there, but all I see is more male them female. I think there is about 8 male two females. The vines are around 3 to 5 feet long. Thank U,

The male flowers, which open

The male flowers, which open first, will often fall off. The female flowers will follow about a week later so if you have a couple, you're on your way. Both flowers need to open at the same time in the morning with nice warm weather conditions so that your bees can pollinate them. 

I rotate my watermelon

I rotate my watermelon (carefully); will I still have a white or yellow mark on the bottom?

We do not advise that turn

We do not advise that turn your watermelon or you risk having the vine snap. It is better to place a flat rock, board, or hay underneath the melon to avoid rot or pests.

I planted melon and its grow

I planted melon and its grow well,i counted like 8 melon and funy part is everything was turn black.what will the way out?.

I want to grow square

I want to grow square watermelons by putting them in square plastic bins. Does the plastic need to be clear? , does the fruit need sun or just the leaves?
I have the same question for pumpkins.

Hi, Mark, See a video on how

Hi, Mark, See a video on how to grow square watermelons by Almanac editor Janice Stillman here: http://www.almanac.com/video/h...

Have one acre of land in the

Have one acre of land in the Northern region of Uganda. Just inquiring what type of watermelon can do well their. Secondly, Like how many harvests can be made on a single melon plant.

Please advise.

Sorry, Franco. We are a North

Sorry, Franco. We are a North American publication and only know about our regions. We harvest two to three fruit per plant.

This is my first time growing

This is my first time growing watermelons and i just planted the seeds a week ago and there are buds already is that normal? because i am pretty excited right now .

Hi Lakisha, If the soil is

Hi Lakisha, If the soil is nice and warm, watermelon four to six days to emerge. Make sure you keep up the watering (see above) and have plenty of compost for them. Watermelon is a heavy "feeder"!

am a Nigerian, i planted

am a Nigerian, i planted watermelon, seeds were treated, soil well drained loam. i discoverer that at the point of bearing fruit, when it bore the fruit where becoming soft and decaying at very tender point. am losing out. need some help please, thanks for your assitance

Could you have bloom rot?

Could you have bloom rot?

Blossom-end rot is a common

Blossom-end rot is a common problem. It's caused by a calcium deficiency during fruit development. Avoid Watermelons by providing very steady watering throughout the season--usually, about one inch per week.

Hi, I wish to know how many

I wish to know how many seeds of water mwlon can be planted in one acre and how many fruits can be harvested on one plant.

from 1 to 4 seeds

from 1 to 4 seeds

what kind of plant food do I

what kind of plant food do I need for growing watermelon?

Watermelons sing summer,

Watermelons sing summer, don't they?
Before your plants flower, use a high nitrogen fertilizer. Once flowers emerge, switch to a fertilizer with less nitrogen and lots of potassium and phosphorus. Liquid seaweed is a good choice.

What are the best companions

What are the best companions for melons in the garden?

All of the following are good

All of the following are good companions for watermelon: nasturtiums, marigolds, oregano, basil, radishes, corn, and pumpkins.

how fast will my watermelons

how fast will my watermelons grow once they come out of the ground. when will they start to vine etc. pleasegive me a month . update on what I am looking foe.
first time grower

Hi, Dave, It's not possible

Hi, Dave, It's not possible for us to give you this kind of schedule. There are too many variables. Ask around where you got your seeds or transplant; someone there may have grown this variety of watermelon in the past and can draw on their experience. Even with that, you have to consider weather, the quality of your soil, your growing season (number of days of optimum conditions) vs the growing time needed for your chosen variety...among other things. Good luck!

Can I add compost on top Of

Can I add compost on top Of the planted seeds? Or will it affect it?

Check you package directions

Check you package directions to see how deep the seeds should be planted. You don't want to pile on and make the seed struggle unnecessarily. You could spread compost near the seeds, or better: Wait for the seedings to become established (several inches tall) and sprinkle compost around them then.

Sugar baby watermelon question

I just planted My sugarbaby watermelons outside. But I forgot to add compost to the mixture. Do you think it will be alright and grow big and healthy? It is my first time growing this and I just read the instructions on the back of the seed package. I hope they will be alright.

Compost is only one of the

Compost is only one of the factors involved in your plants growing big and healthy. Once the plants firmly establish themselves in the soil, you can sprinkle compost around the stems. Do that a few times during the growing season, increasing the amount each time.
Next time, put down and mix compost into your soil FIRST. (Have you started a compost pile? are you aging manure in a pile for use next season?? These are things you can do year round--and so always have healthy soil for your plants.)

First time watermelon grower

OK, I am a first time watermelon grower. My question is #1 I don't have compost can I use regular potting soil ,if not can I use regular garden soil ? I live in central Fl. and the soil here is very sandy #2 I'm only growing some for me and my husband and maybe a couple of neighbors so can I plant my seeds along my fence? #3 Can I make the hills a little closer than 3 to 7 feet apart? Is there anything else other than whats on the package that I should know?

first-time watermelon

You can use the soil you describe but you probably will not have great results. Sand does not hold water; water filters through it. "Water"melon plants need quite a bit of water as they grow; if there is no soil to hold the water around the plant's roots, you will be watering all the time (almost literally).
If you are going to buy regular potting soil, as you describe, ask at the place you buy it if they have compost. It usually is available in 20- to 40-pound or so bags. (You do not have to use fresh from the farm compost.) You can mix the compost with potting soil. How much?? Maybe 50-50. The goal is to have "soil" with ingredients that hold moisture. (This is desirable for almost any plant, certainly edibles. Many tropicals or types of plants that you see thriving around you in the sandy soil would not do well in compost because they like the dryness that sand enables.)
As to the fence and hills, sure. Those decisions are secondary to the soil. And, by the way, sun. Do not plant the watermelon in shade. It needs about 8 hours of sun per day.
We hope this helps. Good luck!

is it okay

is it okay to plant it on a base ?

Your question is not clear,

Your question is not clear, but by "base" if you mean a stump or other firm surface, no. The roots need some place to go.

Pink Flesh

I have had a garden for two years. Planted Crimson Sweet both years,have gotten 5 melons last year 4 this year. I look for the bottom side to turn yellow or cream, I had 2 that were almost the same green color all over. But when I cut them open, only 3 of all of them were red inside, all the others were pink. What did I miss to know when to pick the ripe ones.

Lots of gardeners have a

Lots of gardeners have a difficult time determining when watermelons are ripe. Use a combination of the following tips:
light green, curly tendrils on the stem near the point of attachment of the melon turn brown and dry
the surface color of the melon where it was once powdery or slick takes on a dull look
the skin resists penetration by a fingernail and is rough to the touch
the bottom of the melon (where it lies on the soil) turns from light green to rich yellow

how to tell if it is ripe...

The main ways to check and see if your watermelon is ripe is by checking the tendril (the one little vine that looks like a piggy tail closest to the watermelon). The tendril should be completely brown. Also there is another leaf that you should check on the vine. It is called the spoon leaf. This leaf is just a small cup shaped leaf and if it is also located near the watermelon. This leaf should also be brown and dead. If both of those leaves/vines are dead then the watermelon should be ripe. I hope this helps :)


We are first timers and have a beautiful watermelon plant. There are blooms, and some fruit has started. The only problem is, our fruit will get about thumb size, and the bloom will turn brown, and a few days later the fruit starts to turn black. This has happened with all 6 watermelons. We are in a severe drought this year, and I water my plant 3 times a day. Am I over watering or is it something else? Is there a way to save future fruit that may come on this plant? Nothing else is planted, just this one plant. We are hoping to get at least 1 watermelon off this plant since our daughter brought it home from school in early April.

Several folks have had this

Several folks have had this problem this year (read some below). Your plant probably has a fungus. This can be brought on/introduced several ways; one common one is failure to rotate crops. Curcubits, such as watermelon, should be rotated properly with other crops and not return to the same place/soil in the garden for at least 3 years.
So,okay, you say, you’ve rotated or maybe this is your first year with watermelon. The fungus overwinters in the soil from a previous vine crop. It might be carried by a cucumber beetle. And frequent rains (or watering; you might be giving it too much) can help to spread the fungus. Some sources suggest spraying plants. Certainly some fertilizer—chemical or organic—can help a struggling plant; try it. Can’t hurt. (BTW, I recently heard a farmer observe: If we all drank just water, we’d grow some but we’d be thin and unhealthy.)
If possible, in future, grow cultivars that are resistant to fungus, and control weed growth.
We hope your daughter is not discouraged by this experience. Next year, try a few more kinds of plants. The chance of having greater success is more likely.
Then go to a farmer’s market and buy one, and ask the local grower what he would do or thinks was the problem, too. Sometimes, local conditions indicate more than we can know from here.

watermelon black spot and drying up

I am new to this but I have some water melon that are about the size of a football but some are shrivleing up at the end not where the stem is but the opposite side and another one has a black spot in the same place at the very end what is this from and what can I do to save my plants please help.....

it sounds like flower end rot

it sounds like flower end rot to me. I had it really bad on my tomatoes last year. it's aparently common to tomatoes, peppers and some squash. my research told me it was due to a calcium deficiency, and that in most cases the soil has enough calcium, but the plant is unable to absorb it usually due to not enough watering, or irregular watering. I've watered my garden more consistantly this year and have not come across any black spot, or flower end rot so far.

Bite marks

I'm a first time grower and have been anxiously waiting for my watermelon plants to produce but every time I get a fruit it gets bite marks within a few days. The fruit then turns black and dies. I'm trying to figure out what the pest could be. I have eggplants and cucumbers that haven't had this problem. Also I have some watermelons that are off around level that are doing fine. Please help!

Bite marks

What type of bite marks? Small, insect holes or canine tooth marks? Animal pests might include racoons, deer, crows, and coyote. They like fruits and melons. Look for tracks near the garden.
If your fruit is turning black and dying, this is usually a different problem called blossom end rot. Usually, the reason is dry weather and lack of water. Watermelon needs adequate moisture, especially as it matures.

Definitely not an animal

I have a fence surrounding the garden so I'm assuming it's an insect. It does turn black and shrivels but only the fruit that has the bites. I live in the northeast so I don't think it's aphids which are normally south.

This site suggests cucumber

This site suggests cucumber beetles: http://urbanext.illinois.edu/t...
This site suggests ticks: http://www.princeton.edu/~lawr...
This site suggests pickleworm: http://www.clemson.edu/extensi...

The best thing might be to camp out in the garden and keep an eye on it. And consult your local extension service. It might be something local and the experts there might be hearing about this from several people. Here's our handy list of Cooperative Extension links: http://www.almanac.com/content...

bite marks

Go to your local dollar store or costco and buy crushed red pepper and put it on the outside of your planter box or about 6-12 inches from your plant.. It will keep and of the large animals away

Black and mushy watermelon

This is our first time growing watermelon, hopefully we didn't start too late. We are just getting fruit. We recently had a lot of rain in the past week and my husband just noticed that our biggest watermelon (about the size of a ping pong ball) is black and mushy on the bottom. Does anyone know if this was maybe caused by the rain we got or a possible disease? Thanks!

Sounds like black rot (unless

Sounds like black rot (unless it is at the blossom end of the fruit, in that case it would be blossom end rot). It is a fungus that affects much of the cucurbit family. Immediately remove the infected melon. Ensure proper drainage so that when wet weather strikes, your melons are not sitting in water. Treat the remaining plants with fungicide. Good luck!


can a watermelon grow well in 55 degree weather year round ? What can I do to help it along.

No. Pumpkins need warm soils

No. Pumpkins need warm soils (65°F at 2” soil depth) to germinate or transplant.

turning black and drying up

I was excited to see 5 small watermelons starting on 3 different plants a few weeks ago, but most of those turned black and dried up. Two of them are growing, but still small like a baseball. I have seen more start, but turn black and shrivel up as well. Today I noticed a few more starting, so I am hoping they survive. What causes them to turn black and dry up? I was surprised, since some of them had been golf ball size, though most are very small, like marbles.
Thanks for your help!


Botanical Name: 

Citrullus lanatus

Plant Type: 

Sun Exposure: 

Soil Type: 

Hardiness Zone: 

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