Grow your own watermelons!
A few months ago I got some free watermelon seeds in the mail and, as one does, planted them immediately without reading up on seasons or anything like that. The seeds grew into a lot of green leaves and yellow flowers. But no watermelon.
Until, one day, my life changed forever. A small little green thing, the size of a jelly bean, hung from my plant.
After this I decided to start watering the plant instead of just letting nature take care of it for me.
After several weeks of it growing, I picked it and rushed inside to cut it open and have some yummy fresh watermelon. And then something tragic happened.
My only watermelon wasn't ready to be picked, and was inedible. And then my watermelon vine shrivelled up and died. And that's the anti-climatic end of my watermelon adventure.
Due to my gardening laziness and incompetence, it didn't work out for me.
But I still think growing your own watermelons is great! They grow heaps in size, making it exciting to watch their progress, and they are delicious and healthy. In fact, my watermelon misadventure inspired me to research them, and I am about to share the fruits of my labour (sorry, couldn't help myself) with you.
What climate do watermelons grow best in?
Watermelons grow best in a warm climate. They also need a sunny spot in your garden, and should hopefully be getting at least 6 hours of sun per day.
Do watermelons need a lot of room to grow?
Yes. Not only are watermelons big in themselves, they also grow on a vine that enjoys taking up a lot of space and strangling other plants- literally. When I went to check on my chilli plant next to my watermelons, the watermelon vine had actually wrapped it tendrils around the chilli plant in four places!
How long do watermelons take to grow? How can I tell when they're ready?
Watermelons typically take 12-16 weeks after being planted to be ready to pick.
There are a few tricks to help you determine if they're ready or not:
- The bottom should have changed from green to yellow
- It should sound hollow when you tap it.
Of course, I used these tests and it still didn't work out for poor Melanie.
Growing watermelons (if done properly) can be very rewarding and is a great addition to any garden (as long as you keep an eye on it and make sure it doesn't stealthily take over the garden). Also, I've heard some stories of people growing CUBE shaped watermelons by fashioning a box to grow the watermelon in. If you do decide to do that, remember that they need plenty of light!