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General information and discussion about cultivating melons, cucumbers, squash, pumpkins and gourds.

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Old March 6, 2019   #16
ac21686
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oldman, I've grown quite a few of the watermelons on your list and I'm in Zone 6A, maybe 20-25 minutes from 5B. One that I think you should consider is Diana. It is a yellow rind/red flesh like Golden Midget, but in my experience, much sweeter. Fedco measured both and Diana had a 10.3 brix vs GM's 7.4. The Wash. St. evaluation had the same results (mine was a shade over 10 as well). Here are my thoughts on some of the others:

Black Tail Mountain -- consistently my earliest. Brix consistently mid-8s for me. I do not grow it for the small stand we have in the summer at our garden center anymore because it's VERY seedy in my experience. Pretty good, otherwise.

Ali Baba -- I couldn't pick this correctly, I'm guessing. Baker Creek swears by it, but I never had a good one.

Crimson Sweet -- Classic watermelon, can't really go wrong with it.

Cream of Sasketchewan -- Early. Decent taste.

A few others I thought of that worked well for me: Gold Flower, Jade Star (~10 or so days later than Blacktail Mountain, but better tasting IMO), Sorbet Swirl (sweetest I've grown), and Hime Kansen.

Some of the others are 95-100 -- perhaps even longer -- day watermelons (Moon and Stars, Carolina Cross) for me and they've never worked out that well. Hopefully you fare better!

Last edited by ac21686; March 6, 2019 at 12:24 AM.
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Old March 6, 2019   #17
Gardeneer
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Nice seection, how to hints . I like that CLAUD in the picture.
Where I am, melons grow best. There is also a wkatermelon festival.
I have grown Sugar Baby and, Clemson Red and some unknown variety.
My favorite remains to be Sugar Baby. I am going to grow it again, plus couple of other varieties.
Melons do well here to. Of the ones i like is the old fashion Persian Honeydew. I grew some pink hybrid, i didn,t like. It was more like cantaloupe.
Since we have a long warm season, i just direct all cucurbits.

I will check back here when the planting season starts.
Ye,all have a good season.
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Old March 6, 2019   #18
GoDawgs
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This will be just my third year growing watermelons. In 2017 I did Georgia Rattlesnake from seed someone gave me. The plants didn't do much. Last year we got all the melons we wanted from just two hills. No more seed left so this year I'm trying Ali Baba and Stone Mountain, one hill of each. I only grow two hills because that's all the room I have and if they make, all the melons I want.

The first several melons were beautiful but a lot of the later melons grew somewhat deformed, fat on one end and kind of narrow on the other end. Has anyone else run into this or know what causes it?

Critters... coyotes (caught 'em on the game cam) ate some melons in the yard near the plants and toted some off way back to the woods, across two acres! Strong jaws. I had no idea coyotes ate watermelons until I did some research and found out how destructive they are for commercial watermelon growers. This pic also shows one of those "pinheaded" melons:




To protect the last few melons I staked a few tomato cages over them:


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Old March 9, 2019   #19
Tormato
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Orangeglo is still my favorite, 90 dtm is what I average.


In hot areas, Cream of Saskatchewan fruit need to be shaded. Otherwise, they can explode.
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Old March 9, 2019   #20
MdTNGrdner
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Orangeglo is my favorite, too.

Dogs and coyotes will take melons and squash. I've fetched pieces that look like your picture, and whole ones with fang marks back a few times from across the field!
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Old March 27, 2019   #21
Scooty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MdTNGrdner View Post
Orangeglo is my favorite, too.

Dogs and coyotes will take melons and squash. I've fetched pieces that look like your picture, and whole ones with fang marks back a few times from across the field!
The coyotes take a few of mine after ripe and smell super sweet. However, it's more often the raccoons and deer that take a poke first.
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Old March 27, 2019   #22
MdTNGrdner
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I hope I'm not jinxing myself here, but we had raccoon tracks on our pickup truck last year, but not any visible garden damage yet.... unless that's what got into the corn last year instead of deer.

Best thing I've seen eating melon lately (with the exception of Hubby, of course ) was a box turtle in the honeydew two years ago. If a turtle can be happy...
Just don't see enough turtles anymore, but they like what they like and I'm happy to share.
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Old March 27, 2019   #23
pmcgrady
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tormato View Post
Orangeglo is still my favorite, 90 dtm is what I average.


In hot areas, Cream of Saskatchewan fruit need to be shaded. Otherwise, they can explode.
I only planted a few last year...(Orangeglo) everybody that ate some,wanted more....
I'm going big on Orangeglo this year.
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Old March 28, 2019   #24
Scooty
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I've not tried many, though I'm mostly sticking to white fleshed watermelons.

I did like Sweet Siberian more than Orangelo, thou. Or at least taste wise I thought the former was a strong contender to the latter. I forgot which uni in california had taste tests, where Sweet Siberian came out ahead of Orangelo.

Right now for me its:
White Sugar Lump
White Wonder
Japanese Cream Suika

Two years ago I had a mutation of Japanese Cream where the rind came out with a solid dark green like a Sugar Baby, but with the white/cream flesh inside. I need to try it a few more times to see if it's a steady mutation or something carried over by promiscuous bees.
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Old May 17, 2019   #25
oldman
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This is a quick update. I'm still planting tomatoes and peppers this week and need to schedule beans and some miscellaneous vegetables after that. But it was 90 here yesterday and supposed to stay warm so I planted 70 varieties of watermelon. A few were experimental and some were unlabeled, but it's a good variety and once they get established I'll post some pictures.

I'll add a link to my planting spreadsheet too once it's updated.
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