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Picked our first watermelon yesterday

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Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  ander217 on 7/23/2010, 7:09 am

We have been watching our four Moon and Stars watermelons daily to see if the tendrils nearest the stems were beginning to dry. Suddenly, almost overnight it seemed, two tendrils have turned brown and dry. We turned the smaller of the two melons over, and sure enough, the white "belly" of the melon had turned from white to cream color.

Even knowing that these are the signs we look for, it was still scary taking that knife and making the first cut, wondering if we would find our melon too green, overripe, or as Goldilocks would prefer, "Just right."

As Dear Husband made the slice I held my breath. He split apart the two halves, and, "Ta dah!" The melon was perfect. The seeds were large and black, the flesh was firm and red, and it had almost a frosted look to it.

It was so sweet and good. We made pigs of ourselves and ate half of the melon for lunch.

The larger melon is also ready to harvest. Does anyone know how long a fresh melon will last once it is picked from the vine? We're hoping to have one when the granddaughters arrive next Friday for a week's visit.
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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  jenjehle on 7/23/2010, 1:19 pm

I'm just going to throw in my guess on this one...

When I buy one from the store, I put it in the fridge (we like ours cold Smile and I can easily leave it (and possibly forget about it!) for up to a week. And when we do cut into it, they've always been fine. Now that's not to say it wouldn't be BETTER at a different time but nothing happens to them that I can tell.

It would be hard to NOT cut into it right away if it were one I grew, though. I bet that was a moment of pure bliss!

My Sugar Babies have seem to stop growing. Not sure why, this is the first time I've grown them. But they've been baseball size for about 2 wks now. Been trying to give them water when possible. Maybe they need more???? Any thoughts?
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watermelons

Post  ander217 on 7/23/2010, 2:47 pm

These are the first watermelons we've grown in years. We are no experts, and I think we just got lucky this year in having any type of harvest at all.

We set out three plants, and one didn't produce a single melon although it keeps blooming. The others have two each. One of the remaining ones is about the size of an oblong basketball, one is the size of a football with the ends chopped off, and one is a little larger than a softball.

The seed packet said our melons could reach up to 40 lbs. each. We planted them in a bed which had plenty of manure and compost worked into it. Ours were far smaller than 40 lbs. when the tendrils dried up. I think the drought we had earlier in the year may have had something to do with it, even though we kept them watered. I'd say just keep watching yours for signs of maturity. They might just be small this year with the strange growing year we've had.

Any melon experts out there who can explain our smaller size melons?
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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  Megan on 7/23/2010, 5:36 pm

@jenjehle wrote:My Sugar Babies have seem to stop growing. Not sure why, this is the first time I've grown them. But they've been baseball size for about 2 wks now. Been trying to give them water when possible. Maybe they need more???? Any thoughts?

Crack one open and see what you've got???

At least you have melons! I have had flowers.... but no melons spied so far. Sad
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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  jenjehle on 7/23/2010, 6:15 pm

@Megan wrote: Crack one open and see what you've got???

At least you have melons! I have had flowers.... but no melons spied so far. Sad

I only have 2 melons so cracking open one of them wouldn't be a good idea. There were only flowers on mine for a long time too but then, out of nowhere, I found melons! Keep watching! You never know...
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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  Megan on 7/23/2010, 6:18 pm

My melon leaves are looking rather yellow, especially lower down on the vine. I am thinking at least some of it is because it's being shaded, but perhaps it is hungry, too....


Last edited by Megan on 7/23/2010, 6:29 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : correct grammar)
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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  jenjehle on 7/23/2010, 6:21 pm

@Megan wrote:My melon leaves is looking rather yellow, especially lower down on the vine. I am thinking at least some of it is because it's being shaded, but perhaps it is hungry, too....

Can you post a picture of your plant? That may help someone give you suggestions.

Are you sure you don't have Powdery Mildew or someother disease? The leaves on my squash plants turned yellow from PM. Had to pull them all out.
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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  Megan on 7/23/2010, 6:39 pm

Well, there are other curcurbits very close by and they seem aggressively healthy. Don't know. It is tough to get a picture because it is quite a jungle in there... but these photos are the best I can get.

The other plants you can see are pole beans, cucumbers, and behind the trellis, corn and a crookneck squash. It looks like something has been snipping the blooms off the watermelon, that or they have just fallen.



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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  jenjehle on 7/23/2010, 9:14 pm

I found a chart about nutrient deficiencies.

You may want to see if there's something here specific about yellowing leaves. It looks to me like most of your plant has discoloration.

http://gardening.about.com/od/gardenproblems/a/NutrientDeficie.htm


Hope this helps!
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Re: Picked our first watermelon yesterday

Post  johnfromfl on 7/23/2010, 9:35 pm

Congrats on your first water melon. I lost 4 of them. Three was from melon bugs and the last one from a downpour that split the melon open. the split melon was about 7 inches in diameter . Had a tinge of red but was mostly green inside. Was a sweet one too. I tasted it but cut it up and put it in my compost bin. my melon vines are taking over my garden. Hope that's a good thing besides the bugs.

One of the problems I have here in Florida is the heat and lack of rain. I'll have to wait until October or November to replant my garden again. BTW the eggplants are doing ok and have harvested 5 from 2 plants so far. I am waiting for my garden to finish the growing session so I can change from topsoil to mels mix. A mistake I made from not reading the SQ FT GARDEN BOOK first.
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