Growing Watermelons In Florida

Growing Watermelon in Florida

Growing Watermelon in Florida

Planting watermelons is a great way to use your property and provide a healthy and delicious treat for the summer! This article will go into detail on growing watermelons in Florida and what you need to know.

1. Watermelons need warm weather.
2. Plant in an area with lots of exposure to the sun.
3. Use a tiller to ensure good soil.
4. Establish good drainage.
5. Add compost to soil to help pH balance.
6. Allow enough soil for the seeds to grow roots.
7. Keep soil moist.
8. Use mulch to help prevent weeds.

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1. Watermelons need warm weather.

Farms in Florida provide the perfect climate to grow watermelons. Watermelons need to be grown in warm weather in temperatures over 70 degrees. When the weather is warm enough (early spring), the first thing to decide is what type of watermelon to grow. Watermelon sizes can range from three pounds to seventy pounds and there is a large variety of types, like “sugar baby,” “sangria,” or “jubilee.” You also have the option of seeds or seedless when growing watermelons.

2. Plant in an area with lots of exposure to the sun.

Once you have the seeds for the watermelon type(s) you want to grow, you should decide where to plant them. Watermelons need a minimum of six hours of sun daily, so take that into consideration when deciding where to plant.

3. Use a tiller to ensure good soil.

Allow about a four-by-six foot plot for each watermelon. Use a tiller to work the soil for your watermelon beds. Tilling the soil helps the seeds develop roots faster. Tilling is a great way to help soil that can be suffocated over time by foot traffic or heavy objects. Tilling also helps to prevent insects and weeds from taking over your watermelons.

4. Establish good drainage.

Good drainage is important for watermelons, so check the desired area after a storm. If there are puddles, this is an indication that the soil is not draining well. Drainage is crucial in that it keeps your watermelons from getting choked while reducing soil and nutrient loss. Without drainage, runoff can occur causing soil erosion.

5. Add compost to soil to help pH balance.

Compost is like food for your soil. There are many positive qualities associated with composting. It enriches soil, maintains soil moisture, helps prevent disease, and is a great way to help with pH balance. It also helps to reduce the need of chemical fertilizers.

6. Allow enough soil for the seeds to grow roots.

Use a tractor or a hoe to form mounds of earth to plant your watermelon seeds. Making these little hills for your seeds will help ensure that there is enough room for their roots to grow. They should be about two to six feet apart.

Plant the watermelon seeds on the surface of the little mounds that you made and make a few holes in the soil that are about one inch deep. Then, place no more than three or four seeds in each of the holes. After planting, rake the dirt so it is level on the top of the seeds and pack it gently.

7. Keep soil moist.

After about a week or so, the seeds should start sprouting. Make sure to keep the soil moist. As mentioned above, good mulch and compost helps to maintain moist soil as well as an irrigation system.

8. Apply mulch to help prevent weeds.

Applying mulch after the seeds have germinated will help to stop weeds from growing and will also help with drainage. During this time, you should be watering your watermelons once a day, but when the flowers start to bloom, lessen your waterings to about every three days.

Harvesting Watermelon

Watermelons typically mature after about four months. Picking a watermelon before it is fully ripened can make it less flavorful, so make sure it’s ripe enough. Check the curly tendril near the stem, if it’s dried out, it’s ready to go. Also give a good rap on the watermelon. If you hear a dull noise, they should be good to harvest. Use gardening shears to remove the watermelons from the vines. They can be kept uncut for about ten days after harvesting and two weeks refrigerated.

In addition to watermelon, other types of melons that are easily grown in Florida are honeydew, cantaloupe, and casaba.

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