Monday, August 13, 2012

Our First Melons

I tried growing watermelon and cantaloupe last year but both failed.  (I had planted them in a shadier part of the garden and they just didn't do well.)

I hadn't planned on trying melons this year but I had gone into a local nursery hoping for some sweet potato slips back in June.  Nope.  Sold Out.  Since they were out, I felt that I should buy something.  I can't help myself.  This little nursery is directly across the street from a big box store.  I try to buy from them when I can, but I get the vibe that their days are numbered.  Anyway, I spotted some Ambrosia Cantaloupes starts and bought those instead and this time planted them in the raised beds. 

They've done really well.  They put out about 20 melons ranging in size from an orange to a grapefruit.  We waited for them to get bigger but they never did.  Then we waited for them to yellow up assuming that color would indicate ripeness.

Well, we lost about 4-5 melons that way.  They suddenly split and the bugs got them.  So we picked a green melon, took it in the house and split it. 




Ripe and wonderful all the way to the skin.  Tasted good too.  What a surprise!

So we've been picking one here and there and placing them on the counter to finish "ripening." 




Sunday morning I went and pulled the lot.  There was one that got chewed by the resident bunny that is so small he manages to come and go through my rabbit proof fence, and two others that had bug holes in them so they got tossed into the compost pile.  The rest are sitting on the counter waiting to be eaten.

It's funny...I was expecting to get these huge melons that you see at the store.  But when you buy the grocery melons they're already yellowish and you crack them open to discover they're not even ripe.  Plus no flavor.  Yuck.  (Seems like all store bought fruit is tasteless anymore.)

Home grown melons may be small and green on the outside but they're packed with flavor and juice.  And the smell! 

Live and learn.  I'm so pleased with these that I'll be planting Ambrosia again.  They've earned their place in my garden.

7 comments:

  1. I've read about the Ambrosia, but have not tried them. Good to hear they are delicious--putting them on the list for next year.

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  2. oh how lovely! I'd rather have small mellon that taste good instead of a grassy one from the store.

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  3. Oh yummy! I've only got three melons on one plant, but I'll take it - better than store bought any day!

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  4. You are so right about the store melons not having any flavor. You buy it unripe and within a day or two it is rotten. I didn't have room to grow melons this year. Enjoy your harvest! They look scrumptious!

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  5. Did you hear my intake of breath when I came to the picture of the cut open melon? Oh. My. I could almost smell it. How I wish we could manage to grow melons or watermelons up here. Someday . . . when we have a greenhouse up and going. In the meantime, I can live vicariously through you and your enticing pictures!

    Do you think I could grow one or two vines in a 4 x 8' raised bed with a cold frame on top of it?

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  6. Enjoy those melons of yours. How fantastic!!

    @ 3Beeze Homestead

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  7. Wow! Gorgeous! A good encouragement to the rest of us to not give up on our failures. Try, try again for eventual success!

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