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Melon Growing Advice

Discussion in 'Edible Gardening' started by JWK, Jun 19, 2021.

  1. JWK

    JWK Gardener Staff Member

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    Wondering if I should try one, it seems to have stopped swelling, not as big as I hoped. Is there an easy way to tell if they are ripe?
    20210805_075345.jpg
     
  2. NigelJ

    NigelJ Total Gardener

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    That is about the same size as my largest which also appears to have stopped swelling.
    The easiest way is smell they have a distinctive perfumed smell when ripe, also like tomatoes and apples when they are ripe they come away from the plant easily.
     
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    • pete

      pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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      I agree, the smell gives them away when they are ripe, also the netting on the surface, if you are growing that type.
      Its surprising how long they take to fully ripen.

      This year they will probably be ripe around Christmas.;):biggrin:
       
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      • NigelJ

        NigelJ Total Gardener

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        I'm hoping for Michelmas.
         
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        • JWK

          JWK Gardener Staff Member

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          Oh dear I thought I would be eating them by now. Just been and sniffed them, no smell at all according to Mrs JWK (my sense of smell is non existent).

          In a normal year with sun approx when can they be picked?
           
        • pete

          pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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          September.:)
          Dont pick too soon, I dont know how many you have got, but they will be worth waiting for.
          They will be disappointing if unripe.
           
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          • NigelJ

            NigelJ Total Gardener

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            I think August is typical for me.
            Pete is right if you pick too soon it will put you off them for life, as they will be dry and woody.
            If ripe the juice runs out of them on cutting and they smell really good.
             
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            • pete

              pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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              I think the biggest problem if you pick too early that you will kick your self for ruining a good fruit just by being impatient.
               
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              • JWK

                JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                Thanks @pete and @NigelJ I will wait. I had my tomato head on, thinking they should be picked and eaten straight away. I need to wear my pumpkin head, leave them longer and let them ripen on the plant.
                 
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                • hailbopp

                  hailbopp Gardener

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                  Hmm, I am quite a bit behind JWK with my melons. I have only allowed 3 melons per plant to grow on in the hope this will encourage those to get to picking stage. One or 2 seem to have ground to a halt at the size of about a medium sized apple? Others are now around the size of a big grapefruit but still quite a way to go and our weather has turned quite a bit colder. I live in hope!
                   
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                  • noisette47

                    noisette47 Total Gardener

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                    Are they charentais melons, JWK? The reliable way to tell when they're ripe is that a narrow crack appears right around the stalk, and they'll have a faint yellow tinge. And the distinctive smell :)
                     
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                    • JWK

                      JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                      Yes they are, according to Chiltern seeds they will go orange when maturing. Thanks!

                       
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                      • JWK

                        JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                        I have about a dozen at various stages, there are 3 in this photo:
                        20210816_130406.jpg

                        The biggest is right in the way at eye height so can't miss it. The photo makes it look bigger. Am only getting male flowers now, maybe I should stop any more growing by nipping out the tips. I'm think there isn't enough time for new flowers to set and mature.
                         
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                        • pete

                          pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                          Nice looking melons John, looks like a good result.
                          Imagine what you could do in a good summer.
                           
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                          • hailbopp

                            hailbopp Gardener

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                            Looking good JWK. My plants have stopped flowering and the melons are slowly increasing but not to your size yet. They grew quite quickly but have now slowed down. The weather is still pretty good for us but bit cold at night which might be slowing the process. I have put buying palma ham on hold for the time being!
                             
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