105 Views

Video: How to Grow Watermelons from Seed

Growing watermelons requires lots of space, lots of sun, lots of water and lots of nutrients.
They are greedy, rambling vines, like all plants in the cucurbiteae family (e.g. zucchini, squash, pumpkin, cucumbers…)
Watermelons are not particularly difficult to grow, but because they are so demanding I don’t consider watermelons a good plant for beginner gardeners. (You can get lucky if you live in optimum conditions). Like their cantaloupe cousins, watermelons demand 2 to 3 months of heat to produce ripe fruit, which makes growing watermelons in northern regions challenging, but not impossible. By using plastic mulch to warm soil and floating row covers to trap warm air near plants, gardeners in any part of the country can experience the homegrown goodness of watermelons.
Where and when can you grow watermelons?
In the true tropics the dry season (winter) is the best watermelon growing season.
Watermelons do not cope well with extreme heat or the humid, soggy conditions of our wet season/summer. Fungal diseases and bugs will wipe them out in no time.
If you live in a cooler climate, then summer is the time to grow watermelons.
You do need at least three months of reliably hot, sunny weather to grow and ripen a watermelon. During that time your average daily maximum temperature should be at least about 20-25°C or 70-80F. Warmer is even better.
(There are different watermelon varieties, so if you are at the low end of that, look for a faster maturing variety.)
Grow watermelons in full sun. You also need an abundant supply of water and nutrients (good soil).
And you need space. As I said, a rambling vine. They like to go wandering and smother everything around them.
Watermelons are grown from seed. You may be tempted to use seed out of a melon you bought, but don’t waste your time. It is almost guaranteed to be a hybrid.
Hybrid varieties are very special crosses that don’t grow true to type. (You would end up growing what we call pig melons. A melon variety that’s only good for feeding to the pigs…)
Buy your seed, and if possible buy an open pollinated heirloom variety. Because then you CAN use your own seed next year. The open pollinated varieties are also hardier.
You will find a lot more interesting varieties amongst the heirlooms then you cn find in the standard collection of you local gardening centre.
Start your watermelon seeds in the ground, right where they are supposed to grow. The soil should be at least 18°C for them to germinate.

Unless you have an extremely short growing season, do NOT start your watermelon seed in a pot or punnet. Do NOT buy watermelon seedlings from a nursery.
Watermelon seed germinates easily and quickly, within a few days. Watermelon plants outgrow the seedling stage very quickly, and they don’t like transplanting. You don’t save much time and you end up with a weaker plant.
Save yourself this totally needless extra work and stick your seeds in the ground, about two cm or an inch deep.
(If you have a long growing season, you may want to do several plantings, a few weeks apart.)
Watermelons need deep, rich, friable soils. To grow watermelons it helps to raise the soil (make mounds or ridges). Raising the soil has several advantages:
A mound or ridge is free draining (melons don’t like wet feet). If you have heavy clay soil, definitely raise the bed.
Mounds are also good if the soil is as poor as mine. I just make a mound of good soil with lots of compost in it to grow watermelons. Sometimes I plant them in what’s left over from a compost pile after I used most of the compost.
If you like growing things in neat rows, or if you want to plant a large area, grow watermelons on ridges, like the commercial growers do.
Rows should be about 2 m (6 ft) apart and the plants spaced at 30 cm/a foot apart. (Sow twice as many as you want, and keep the stronger ones.)
I prefer growing watermelons in clumps on a mound, in several different locations in the garden. (Mixing things up helps keeping pests and diseases at bay.) If you want several hills together, keep them about 2m apart.
The mound should be about one meter square and a foot high. Then I plant about ten seeds in it, in three groups of three to four seeds each. The groups are spaced about a foot apart (30 cm).
After a few weeks I can see which watermelon plants grow the strongest, and I snip off the weaker ones, leaving only one seedling in each group. (Don’t pull them up, cut them off. Or you disturb the roots of the others.)

ALSO READ  10 Qualities Of An Excellent Interviewer

If you have a very small garden but absolutely have to have watermelons, you can try growing them on a trellis. You need a very strong trellis, you need to train them up the trellis as they aren’t climbers, and you need to support the developing fruit so the trellis holds the weight, not the plant.
It is a lot of work but it can be done…
Harvest and Storage
Watermelons typically ripen over two weeks. As soon as one melon is ripe, the others won’t be far behind. About a week before a melon is ripe, water only as necessary to keep vines from wilting. Withholding water causes sugars to concentrate in the fruit. Too much water reduces sweetness.You can judge a watermelon’s ripeness by its skin color. The rind changes from a bright to a dull green, and the part that touches the soil shifts from greenish white or straw yellow to rich, creamy yellow. Gardeners also judge a watermelon’s ripeness by rapping on the skin and listening for a low-pitched thud. Tune your ear to the incorrect sound by rapping on a few fruits that aren’t ripe. Underripe fruits resonate with a high-pitched, tinny sound.
Watermelons will keep 2 to 3 weeks unrefrigerated. Place them in a cool basement to increase their holding time. After cutting, refrigerate unused portions. If you have extra melon on hand, dice or cut the flesh into balls and freeze for slushies.

Watch the video below:

 

Get the best viral stories straight into your inbox!

Don't worry, we don't spam

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Latest Posts

Ara Hosts Diplomatic Communities For Screening Of ‘Osunfunke’
Art, History and Culture
45 views
Art, History and Culture
45 views

Ara Hosts Diplomatic Communities For Screening Of ‘Osunfunke’

PH - December 17, 2017

Ara, better known as the queen of drums, screened her new film ‘Osunfunke’ for diplomatic communities, and corporate Nigeria. The premiere event held recently in Oshogbo and was well…

OAP Nancy Isime Shares Success Story, Says She’s Never Afraid To Try
Entertainment
58 views
Entertainment
58 views

OAP Nancy Isime Shares Success Story, Says She’s Never Afraid To Try

PH - December 17, 2017

Nigerian OAP and host of Hip TV show “Trending“, Nancy Isime is celebrating her birthday today and few hours prior, she took time out to reflect on her life and journey…

‘Why I Killed For Politicians’ – Confession of 25-Year-Old Ex-cultist (Photo)
Shocking
114 views
Shocking
114 views

‘Why I Killed For Politicians’ – Confession of 25-Year-Old Ex-cultist (Photo)

PH - December 17, 2017

He used to be Nigerian politicians’ Man Friday, the ultimate Mr. Fixer in our murky world of politics. He used to kill and maim for them, at…

Photos: Desmond Elliot Shows Up At Constituency As Santa Claus To Share Gifts
Entertainment
66 views
Entertainment
66 views

Photos: Desmond Elliot Shows Up At Constituency As Santa Claus To Share Gifts

PH - December 17, 2017

We are already in the season of sharing and Nollywood actor turned Politician, Desmond Elliot is already putting smiles on faces of people of his constituency. The actor turned up…

How Alleged Killer Wife Maryam’s Mum, Brother, Househelp Tried To Hide Evidence – Police
Shocking
95 views
Shocking
95 views

How Alleged Killer Wife Maryam’s Mum, Brother, Househelp Tried To Hide Evidence – Police

PH - December 17, 2017

The Nigerian Police Force, yesterday, alleged before an Abuja High Court at Jabi that family members of Maryam Sanda, wife of murdered son of erstwhile Chairman of…

Agriculture: Ogun State Government To Start Sale Of Mass Ofada Rice (Photos)
Agriculture and Farming
58 views
Agriculture and Farming
58 views

Agriculture: Ogun State Government To Start Sale Of Mass Ofada Rice (Photos)

MT - December 17, 2017

The Ogun State Government mass produced Ofada rice, is to be ready for sale to the public this Christmas season in all the Local Government and Local…

2019 Election: Fr. Mbaka Refutes Claims ‘God Has Not Revealed Anything About Atiku’
Politics
65 views
Politics
65 views

2019 Election: Fr. Mbaka Refutes Claims ‘God Has Not Revealed Anything About Atiku’

MT - December 17, 2017

The Spiritual Director, Adoration Ministry, Enugu Nigeria, Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka has disowned media reports, which quoted him as saying that former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar…

Popular Crime Buster, Abba Kyari’s Brother, Farouk Kyari Graduates As Assistant Police Superintendent
Buzz & Trends
77 views
Buzz & Trends
77 views

Popular Crime Buster, Abba Kyari’s Brother, Farouk Kyari Graduates As Assistant Police Superintendent

MT - December 17, 2017

Crime buster Abba Kyari's younger brother has graduated as ASP.Abba Kyari shared the good news yesterday and wrote... 'My Junior brother Farouk Kyari Graduated as an Assistant…

Nigerian Lady, Diana Tattoos Wizkid’s Face On Her Body Says, “Its Permanent, I Won’t Marry”
Entertainment
63 views
Entertainment
63 views

Nigerian Lady, Diana Tattoos Wizkid’s Face On Her Body Says, “Its Permanent, I Won’t Marry”

MT - December 17, 2017

A Nigerian lady and an apparent die-hard fan of Wizkid, Diana, tattooed his face and name on her back and according to her, the tattoo is permanent…

‘I Am In No Competition With Phyno’ – Olamide Reacts To Phyno’s Sold Out Concerts
Entertainment
62 views
Entertainment
62 views

‘I Am In No Competition With Phyno’ – Olamide Reacts To Phyno’s Sold Out Concerts

PH - December 17, 2017

Reacting to critics claim that he is scared of Phyno, over his successful soldout concerts at huge venues at the Nnamdi Azikwe Stadium in Enugu, YBNL Boss, Olamide who changed the…

SARS Operatives And Their Luxurious Lifestyle Revealed
Best of Nigeria
78 views
Best of Nigeria
78 views

SARS Operatives And Their Luxurious Lifestyle Revealed

MT - December 17, 2017

When Tunde Arigbabu (not real names) stepped out of his house in the Ijaiye Ojokoro area of Lagos State that fateful morning in June this year, he…

Meet The Most Controversial Nigerian Celebrities For The Year 2017
Entertainment
55 views
Entertainment
55 views

Meet The Most Controversial Nigerian Celebrities For The Year 2017

MT - December 17, 2017

2017 is indeed a big year for the Nigerian Entertainment industry… A whole lot happened. Some celebrities blew beyond expectations. Some had issues that carpeted their career…

NUC Ranks Ahmadu Bello University No 1 In Nigeria (See Full List)
Best of Nigeria
72 views
Best of Nigeria
72 views

NUC Ranks Ahmadu Bello University No 1 In Nigeria (See Full List)

MT - December 17, 2017

Ahmadu Bello University emerges Highest ranked University in Nigeria (SEE Full List) Congratulations To Amadu Bello University, Zaria. The National University Commission has released its rankings for…

This Bride Calls Off Traditional Wedding Just A Day To The Event In Delta; Refuses To Give Reasons
Shocking
64 views
Shocking
64 views

This Bride Calls Off Traditional Wedding Just A Day To The Event In Delta; Refuses To Give Reasons

MT - December 17, 2017

A prospective bride, Blessing Esakpe shocked everyone as she decided to call off her traditional wedding to her prospective hubby, Comrade Monday Ezuzu, just a day to…

Femi Fani-kayode Reacts To NBA And UNILORIN Student’s Hijab Controversy
Politics
67 views
Politics
67 views

Femi Fani-kayode Reacts To NBA And UNILORIN Student’s Hijab Controversy

MT - December 17, 2017

The controversy surrounding the Nigeria Bar Association and the Unilorin student who was denied a call to Nigeria Bar has been generating controversy since two days now.…

Ex-Governor Alao Akala, Actress Turned Politician, Funke Adesiyan, Teslim Folarin, Others Dump PDP For APC (Photos)
Politics
70 views
Politics
70 views

Ex-Governor Alao Akala, Actress Turned Politician, Funke Adesiyan, Teslim Folarin, Others Dump PDP For APC (Photos)

MT - December 17, 2017

APC National leader, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Osun state Governor Rauf Aregbesola , Ondo state Governor Rotimi Akeredolu in Ibadan today to officially receive Chief Alao Akala, Actress,…

Gidado Idris Dies And Buried. Presidential Hopeful, Atiku Abubakar Attends Burial (Photos)
Politics
53 views
Politics
53 views

Gidado Idris Dies And Buried. Presidential Hopeful, Atiku Abubakar Attends Burial (Photos)

MT - December 17, 2017

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and other dignitaries at the funeral prayer for late former SGF, Alh. Gidado Idris, at National Mosque, Abuja.

See What Ex-Super Eagles Player, Tijani Babangida Looks Like Now
Sports
90 views
Sports
90 views

See What Ex-Super Eagles Player, Tijani Babangida Looks Like Now

MT - December 17, 2017

Tijani Babangida and Daniel Amokachi pictured at the Africa legends game which held in Kano recently. They are players of our time that brought glory to Nigeria.…

Loading...