BrandNewGardener(z7 OK)June 21, 2005

I can't believe I'm so excited! I went out this afternoon to inspect the watermelon. I was actually going to check to see if it looks like I'm going to need to hand pollinate any of them. I found a watermelon fruit already set! It's small enough to fit in the palm of my hand but about an inch and a half long! Yay!

So does anyone else have fruit set yet?

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paintersson(z7 ok)

Yes I live in NE Okc and I went out this morining and seen that I also had some watermelon making sets. I cannot wait to eat them. I am growing sugar babies.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2005 at 11:27PM
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I'm growing my first watermelon and it is a Sugar Baby too! It is taking off! Really excited about it; just hope I have room. I'm thinking of growing at least one of its three vines vertically. Know anything about attempting that?

    Bookmark   June 22, 2005 at 4:24AM
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BrandNewGardener(z7 OK)

Mine is crimson sweet, and the vines do take up alot of room. I've never tried growing vertically.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2005 at 10:28AM
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BrandNew--out of curiosity, when did you plant your melons? I've got some bush sugar baby plants going, but no blooms or anything.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2005 at 11:47PM
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windsurfgirl(Z6 OK)

I'm trying a new melon this year - Desert King. It is supposed to take hot dry conditions. It's a pale skinned round melon with yellow flesh. I can't wait to taste one! I have some flowers but so far no fruit.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2005 at 11:20AM
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BrandNewGardener(z7 OK)

I started my melons about the middle of May. One of my melons has doubled in size in a matter of days. It's truly amazing.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2005 at 2:32PM
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grim_gardener(OK z7)

Hello All, I am knew to this forum and really I'm not, see I've been lurking here ever since its creation, but now I have deceided to join in. Nuf said. I have several vines that I believe have volunteered from last years volunteers. They were yellow meated and tasted great. My question is should they be like last years crop or not? I should know this since I come from watermellon county round Rush Springs but alas, I don't. See we always grew from seed. I already have two on the vine about six or so inches long. By the way, Amazing weather we've had this year don't you think? My father already has gotten six BIG tomatoes off his vines and He lives in the city and his plants were store bought. He swears he has never had ripe tomatoes before July 4th. Matt

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 12:55PM
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BrandNewGardener(z7 OK)

My neighbors have watermelon that has come up voluntarily. I wonder how this is possible since watermelons are a warm weather crop? I thought once the frost hit, they were gonners. Has anyone else had the experience of watermelon coming up the next year after planting?

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 5:42PM
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grim_gardener(OK z7)

We really didn't get a late frost this year. It was cold but no frost. I have had watermellon, pumpkin, tomatoes, and many other things come up volunteer. No Okra, ever. Now that's a warm weather crop! Most every thing that comes up volunteer is Hybrid, you never know if it will be any good. and not knowing much on these things, is it possible to get a hybrid of a hybrid?

    Bookmark   June 26, 2005 at 11:25AM
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Plaidthumb, do you live in a part of BA that is close to the River?

I am not sure if this is still true, but I grew up in an area of the country that used to be called the watermellon capital of the world, and the soil in the field there were a very nice fertile sandy loam. The region was only about 30 miles west of the Mississippi river.

Much of Northeast Oklahoma is heavy clay, except for the areas closer to the Arkansas river that are more sandy, or sandy loam.

The reason I am asking this question, is to find out if you are having success growing your form of watermellon in the commonly found clay soil in northeast OK.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2005 at 8:56PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

Grim gardener--with a volunteer plant, you won't know what you have until you harvest it and try it. Sometimes a volunteer from a hybrid will taste/appear identical to the parent plant and sometimes it won't. If you save seeds from the hybrid volunteer, then each succeeding generation is less likely to be like the parent. After 5 or 6 or 8 generations of grown-out seed being saved and sowed every year, your plants and fruits will likely bear little resemble to the original plant. If the watermelon you grew was an open-pollinated one, then this year's should be identical. Some gardeners like to "grow out" hybrids from seed for many successive generations to see what they get, but they usually don't get anything special!

Brandnewgardener, The watermelons that came up in your neighbors' garden could be from seed that didn't sprout last year, or from seed from a watermelon that wasn't harvested and rotted in the garden, thereby 'planting' seeds itself for next year. Or, if they have a compost pile and it didn't get "hot enough" in the pile to decompose the seeds, the seeds could have been inadvertantly planted in the garden when they added compost from their pile. I have volunteer seedlings of tomatoes, pumpkins, and watermelons every year. If they are in a spot where they have room to grow, I let them stay. This year 2 watermelon seedlings came up in the gravel driveway on the edge of the flower border, so I'm letting them grow into the flower border, just to see what I get.

I grow my melons mainly in sandy loam that has been improved with compost and stuff, but I have a few in much heavier clay soil that has also been amended with lots of organic material. They do best in sandy loam, but will grow and produce in clay soil that has had organic material added.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2005 at 8:36AM
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grim_gardener(OK z7)

Thank you OkieDawn, I figure the watermellon that is this years volunteer came from last years yellow meated. I am quite sure that one came from an All Sweet that was red meated. I compost alot and usually the mellons make it into the pile but sometimes I get lazy and they just rot on the vine. The birds seem to be the ones to distribute Tomato seeds everywhere. I haven't seen them eat watermellon. I am letting the plot go fallow and the vines (along with the bermuda)are now taking it over. What do you do to keep the grasses down? I have been using cardboard under the vines. but I am finding that difficult as the tendrills are grabing the taller grasses. wood or straw mulch mulch just covers everything! and I think it might smother the watermellon vines as well. On a side note. I am not a seed saver and I am not proud of that fact. My Father said "Any gardner worth his salt should not have to buy seed every year" I guess the Hybrid principle now explains why some years his crops were quite diffent from the others, not always good, but always unique!

    Bookmark   June 27, 2005 at 9:39AM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

Grimgardener: For mulch I like to use cardboard or several sheets of newspaper under hay or straw. I put the hay or straw down REALLY THICK (4" to 8" thick, if I can) in the areas where I grow melons, pumkins and winter squash, as their growing season is long and I don't want for the grass to invade. The plants creep and crawl all over the hay, and having the hay/straw mulch reduces soil splash and disease too.

I don't use wood mulch products in the veggie garden or flower borders around it because my garden is on a pretty steep slope and, when it does rain (not happening this year!), the mulch washes downhill into our woodland.

In spite of the mulch, I still find myself fighting bermuda grass and Johnson grass a little. I hand-dig and remove the grasses, as most organic grass-killers don't knock them back enough to kill them. I have had good luck with Dr. Bronner's Peppermint Soap, though, in killing some weedy grasses that are clumping types. Ten or twenty percent vinegar, purchased at an organic supply store, and mixed in with the Dr. Bronner's Soap solution helps too. I think the soap and vinegar together burn the foliage enough to kill the grasses.

And I am not the best of seed-savers either, for a couple of reasons. First, I cram too much stuff into too small of a space. Since I'm not growing plants with proper isolation, there's no guarantee the seed will be 'true' and give me what I want. Secondly, I grow lots and lots and lots of veggies, fruits and flowers. Everything gets ripe at once and I get really busy. Really, really busy! Seed-saving, even when I intend to do it, just seems to fall by the wayside. Third, I like trying some new varieties every year, so I feel less compelled to save a lot of seed. Fourth, many seed packets have enough seed in them to last for several years, so I just don't bother with the seed-saving. And, if you shop around for bargains, seed doesn't have to be that expensive.

Of course, there's always exceptions. The Earl's Faux tomato plant is one of them. It is not easy to find, and is reputed to be quite good, so I will bag the next blossoms I see appearing and will save that seed. I will probably save the seed of my Blacktail Mountain watermelon, too, as I planted the last of the packet this year.

My best solution to having grass invade my veggie garden has been to plant a 4' to 8' wide border of flowers and herbs around the veggie garden as a buffer zone. I grow the flowers and herbs really thickly, and whatever grass creeps into them doesn't do well as it is heavily shaded by the taller flowers by midsummer. I do still find grasses invading the flower/herb borders, but at least now my battle with grasses is largely devoted to keeping them out of the flowers/herbs instead of the veggies. As long as I diligently hand-dig and remove the grasses, I am seeing fewer and fewer grasses every year in the veggie garden and its surrounding borders. I susptect I'll always have some grass problems though, as I am surrounded by miles and miles of cattle and horse pastures,and get wind-born and water-carried seed all the time. (I'm downhill from many of those pastures.)

The bonus to using hay or straw as mulch is that it breaks down and enriches the soil. After three or four years of using it as mulch, you won't believe how much your soil has improved!


    Bookmark   June 27, 2005 at 11:08AM
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Hmmm, lots of good things here since I checked last.

Katrina, what river do refer to in BA? There are creeks and pond galore, but I don't know of an actual river. I suppose part of the Arkansas river might wind its way through the southernmost part of the city, but don't really know. The Arkansas (ArkanSAW river unless you're in Kansas, then it's the ArKANSAS river)"river" is mostly sand bars by the time it gets down to us and the other states have taken their share of water from it. Tulsa is having a big stink about "developing" the riverfront. The only thing I can see it useful for most of the year is maybe a sand dragstrip or year-round sand-castle contests. When there is water in it, we all get confused... Oh-the answer to your question then is...uh, I don't think so. I just have clay and bermuda weed. I've been throwing grass clippings, leaves, fireplace ashes, some kitchen waste, and whatever other stuff strikes my fancy at time into the main garden area the last three or four years, trying to get the clay improved, and I noticed this spring when I tilled it that it broke down into marble-sized balls instead of cinder-block chunks, so we're making progress.

I planted some bush sugar baby melons on a whim this year in a mound made of commercial top soil/composted manure mix. I have a couple of watermelons setting on, and more blooms, so I'll let you know if it works.

Dawn, how do you keep the straw mulch from blowing all over in the OK wind? I've been mulling that in my little brain, and I can't see how it won't be more of a nuisance than a help. Especially since the posts I keep reading say not to overwater melons, the straw would be dry, therefore at the mercy of the hot air blowing around, or am I missing something?

The area I use for the main part of the garden had been surrounded by 1/2-buried railroad ties by the previous owner. I don't have any problem with bermuda in that area of the garden at all.

If the melons show any positive results at all, next year I'll add more. Moon & Stars for sure, and probably some Black Diamond, along with trying some heirloom muskmelon.

When I was a kid, we would travel from northern IN to southern IL once a month, and in melon season we always had to take the "old" road across the one-lane bridge in Hutsonville so we could pick up some fresh-off-the-vine melons out of the Wabash river bottom ground. I think maybe the next time I go back that way, I'll bring back a bucket full of some of that "real" dirt and show my clay what it's supposed to look like. Maybe I can shame it into getting its act together ;0)

    Bookmark   June 27, 2005 at 1:22PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7


You know, I have never had a problem with hay or straw mulch blowing around or blowing away, even in 60 or 70 m.p.h. winds that accompany thunderstorms. I guess it is partly because I lay it down in huge squares removed from the bales. The squares are usually 3" or 4" thick and tightly compressed by the baler, so they hold together just fine. If I were to break down the hay or straw into loose pieces, I guess it might blow off, but if you break it down into loose pieces, too much light gets through and stuff sprouts (you can guess that I learned that one the hard way, of course!).

I lay those squares down side by side, and sometimes I scatter grass clippings in the 'cracks' between the squares if they don't match up perfectly so that I don't have weeds sprouting between the squares. I tried using the gigantic round bales because a rancher friend gave me some of them that were old and considered "spoiled" for the purpose of feeding cattle. They worked OK, but are so large that I had to spend a lot more time tearing them apart. And, because the round bales weigh so much (maybe about a ton each, I think!), I had trouble moving them!

I love the square bales--they are just the right size. This year I have put down about 50 square bales of hay and/or straw in various places, mostly in the veggie garden and its surrounding flower and herb border. I hardly weed that area at all, esp. in comparison to how much weeding I used to do. Recently a friend showed up with 11 bales of "spoiled" hay in her truck and gave it to me. I've been having fun adding more mulch to areas that have gotten a little thin. (The hay packs down when it rains and it also decomposes, so after a few months I like to add more.)

You simply won't believe how long the hay holds the moisture in the ground! I am having to water some this year, as we've only had 10.5" of rain in Love Country and are headed for possibly our worst drought EVER since records have been kept, but I am not watering nearly as much as I had to back during our last severe drought, which was before I was using mulch heavily. And, if you compare my hard, cracked clay in the pasture to my mulched clay in the garden, there is an amazing difference

I hope your watermelons are doing well. I am trying to walk that fine line between watering enough to keep them alive and not watering too much, as it ruins the flavor! I don't fertilize them either, 'cause overfertilization can cause 'white heart' which is just white, tasteless flesh.
Nothing is better than a watermelon from the garden! (Well, OK, maybe tomatoes from the garden are just as good, but there's always lots of them...and the watermelons are fewer and farther in between, so they are more of a treat!)


    Bookmark   June 28, 2005 at 7:09AM
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Dawn, Here I go admitting my ignorance, and you know how I hate that... Being a townie, I never paid much attention to how straw was baled. Isn't it all just smushed together and tied? Your post makes it sound as if there is a succession of layers or sections that are compressed and tied, is that right? Just trying to figure out how you're taking it off the bales.


Oh yeah, what's a good price for a bale of straw? Westlake hardware (don't like shopping there anymore than wallyworld--they're running the local guys out of biz) had it this spring for $2.50 a bale. The only place I can find it now is the Co-op and they're wanting $4 for a bale. I'm cheap! Are these normal prices, or is it a geographical thing?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 12:36AM
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okie3(z6 NE OK)

Hello, I am growing one plant of crimson sweet and two plants of black diamond, my crimson sweet is doing really well with two melons about the size of bowling balls and 3-4 more that are close to baseball size, but my black diamonds arent making any fruit just blooms, do the diamonds come later in the season like maybe august? This is also my first year to grow melons, my wifes granddad always grew them down in eufala near the lake and he always said that sandy soil was best and I have that here in Chouteau, so hopefully they keep growing good.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 4:59PM
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Dawn I was so glad to hear about your experience using straw. I wondered if it would be a better mulch, when I used it to winterize some newly planted White New Dawn climbing roses last winter. At the time I loved working with the stuff, and mine stayed in place very nicely also.

The only thing that discouraged me from using it for mulch is the claims I read reported that as it breaks down it drains the soil of some element (maybe nitrogen, not sure) that plants need for growing. Have you found any decline in your plants because of that reported effect?

One other problem, I encountered by putting it in a low area with lots of clay soil, is that when a young oak tree planted near gets watered and the runoff water does not drain fast enough there is a moldy smell coming from the straw. That makes me wonder if I used the straw for mulch if it would promote deadly forms of root fungus that often can easily kill trees and other plants? It also makes me wonder if your soil drains well, which makes the mold problem not occur in your gardens.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 6:59PM
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BrandNewGardener(z7 OK)

I can see the straw thing working, but I always laugh when people from other states recommend using grass clippings for mulch! Yeah right! I can just imagine how long THAT would last in the Oklahoma winds.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2005 at 12:20AM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

Hi Everyone!

I had no idea that y'all would find hay so interesting, but believe me, I think it is a great friend to gardeners due to the many ways it can be used.

Plaid Thumb: How hay is baled depends on the type of baler used. In general, though, each bale is made of a compressed stack of smaller pieces....think of a bale of hay as a roll of quarters. Each 'quarter' is compressed hay 2" to 4" thick. These sections are tightly compressed to form the whole "roll of quarters". When you cut the baling wire, if the hay has been properly baled, it will sit there like the wire wasn't even cut. A typical square bale probably weighs 40 or 50 pounds if it is fresh. The older hay gets, the more it dries out and partially decomposes and the less it weights. Old hay, like the 'spoiled' stuff my ranching friends somtimes give me, will weigh significantly less. (I can lift a bale of old hay if it is old enough, but I have to drag a bale of new hay.) Round bales are wrapped in layers that are tightly compressed, so a properly baled round bale will unroll like a carpet of hay about 2" thick. Unfortunately, that round bale weighs about 1500 pounds, which is why I find it so hard to work with round bales.

Those square hay bales are so tightly compressed that it can be hard to pull the sections apart. And, the harder it is to pull apart the bale, the better the job of baling was done. You MUST have that hay as tightly compressed as possible to keep the oxygen out of the bale. If oxygen can get into the center of the hay bale, the oxygen can combine with the small amount of moisture present in the hay and begin the decomposition process. This, in turn, can result in spontaneous combustion of the hay bale. This happens more often than you think. If a farmer or rancher stores his hay in a barn, he MUST be sure it is very dry first or the whole mess can combust and burn down the barn and all the hay. When I buy hay, I ALWAYS store it outside so there is no chance it will combust inside my shed or garage.

Straw, by the way, is different. It is a lot more lightweight and doesn't pack down tightly like hay. Thus, a bale of straw weighs less and covers less ground. One advantage of straw over hay is that straw is just the plant stalks after all the grainheads have been removed, so there's nothing in the straw that can germinate and begin growing in your garden. Also, if you are trying to mulch something small with fairly close spacing, like onions or bush beans, hay is looser and easier to work into those small areas.

As far as the price of a bale of good hay, it is dependant on the quality of the hay you are buying (which matters more if you are buying it for horse or cattle to eat, than if you are buying it as mulch). In general, we pay $3.00 to $5.00 per square bale at the feed store, and probably it is usually $4.00 or $4.50. When hay is scarce, like in late winter when most of last year's crop has been sold and this year's crop is not yet harvested, it can cost more. In periods of prolonged, severe drought, it can cost more due to the laws of supply and demand, and that is if you can even find it at all. I'm going to buy some hay this week or next to store for fall because we are in a severe drought here in southern Oklahoma, and hay is going to be hard to find at any price in the fall. (I have seen it sell at the feed store for $7.00 a bale during drought periods.)

Okie3, Different melons do set fruit at different rates. Crimson Sweet usually sets fruits pretty early compared to many others, which is why it is so often recommended for northern growers who have shorter growing seasons. Black Diamond sets fruit later, although I think you should see fruit on those plants fairly soon if they were planted at the same time as your Crimson Sweet. One of the differences in the two is that Crimson Sweet will give you 20 to 30 pound melons under optimal conditions and Black Diamonds will usually give you 60 to 75 pound melons under those same optimal conditions. If you look at the vines of those two types, it seems like Black Diamond vines are usually thicker, lusher and more vigorous. I think that Black Diamond has to spend more time making lots of vigorous growth early on in order to produce those really large melons.

And is sandy soil best? Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. When I was a kid growing up in Texas, the best melons you could buy in the stores came from parts of Texas with sandy soils. (Now, of course, watermelons sold in stores are imported from anywhere and everywhere and I don't think the quality is as good any more.) Watermelons make huge root systems, and the looseness of sandy soils obviously makes it easier for those roots to grow and spread.

Katrina, The only time I have ever heard of the nitrogen-draining effect is if the hay, straw or grass clippings are tilled INTO the soil and not merely placed on top of it. I don't think that hay or straw or grass clippings on the surface of the soil ties up nitrogen in the same way. If you are worried about it being a problem, why not put down a natural source of nitrogen like manure or cottonseed meal, for example, before you lay down the hay or straw?

I do not think the hay or straw in any way has a negative effect on my garden. My tomato plants, for example, are anywhere from 4' to 9' tall and are producing fruit like crazy. The flowers that I mulched with hay are all lush, green and tall and blooming beaurifully. Over time (with most of the veggie and flower beds now being 6 years old), the amount of improvement in the soil has been incredible--mostly due to the decomposing mulch which enriches the soil.

The issue of poorly draining clay soil is a whole different ballgame though. In poorly draining areas, I am a little more cautious about the use of hay. I still use it, but I do watch it for a yucky, sour smell which indicates the hay is really staying almost too wet. Also, I keep it pulled back a couple of inches from the trunks of trees or shrubs, just to ensure that some sort of rot doesn't set in.

If your soil is incredibly slow draining, you might want to consider aerating the soil once every year or two to get more oxygen into the soil. You can get a lawn service to perform aeration for you, or you can rent an aerator and do it yourself. Even better, after aeration has been done, fill the holes with compost. The earthworms will mix that compost in with your clay to improve the drainage even more.

MOST of my clay drains moderately well because most of it is a sandy-clay. However, right outside my back door I have a large section of denser clay where rain puddles can sit for several days before they finally either soak into the soil or evaporate, or some combination thereof.

My solution to the dense clay, though, is to topdress that area often with compost OR hay/straw. Why? Well, the only way the drainage will ever improve in that clay is to get more organic material into the soil. Of course, topdressing doesn't get the organic stuff down into the soil as quickly as rototilling it into the soil would, but eventually the earthworms and other soil-burrowing critters do carry the organic material down into the clay. And, over time (speaking in a period of years), the drainage improves and the water soaks into the soil faster than it used to.

BrandNewGardener: OK, you will think I am crazy or perhaps making this up, but here goes: I have used grass clippings for years and years and I've NEVER had a problem with them blowing away. I know that defies logic, but it is true.

We have a huge triple-bagger on our riding lawn mower and we collect grass clippings and use them as mulch or in the compost pile. I think the reason they don't blow away is that, due to the moisture content in the grass, the clippings pack down together and begin decomposing pretty quickly. This might partially explain why they don't blow away. And, in fact, in especially rainy summers like last summer, the grass clippings may pack down TOO MUCH due to their higher water content and form a solid mat that somewhat repels water absorption.

Finally, y'all, as wonderful as this whole discussion of hay has been, we have really just scratched the surface. The late organic gardening genius, Ruth Stout, used straw, hay, leaves and other organic materials placed ON TOP of the ground in her gardens and produced monster produce and plants. She was quite famous for the books she wrote about her deep mulching process. I read her books right after I moved to Oklahoma in the winter of 1999 and they greatly influenced the way I garden now. Before I read her books, I only used grass clippings and leaves in the compost piles. Now, I use them as mulch as well. My favorite book of hers is the one called "The Ruth Stout No-Work Garden Book". I think that Pat Lanza's lasagna gardening technique is merely a layered improvement of Ruth Stout's methods, and I greatly admire Pat Lanza, enjoy her books and have learned much from her also.

And, before you even ask, I do gather leaves in the fall and winter months and use them as mulch and in the compost pile, similar to the way I use hay and straw in the spring and summer. To keep the leaves from blowing around, I shred them first and then wet them down with the hose as soon as I put them down on a bed. They decompose beautifully and really help enrich the soil. In a good year, when I have time to collect a lot of leaves (we have about 10 acres of wooded land in our 14.4 acre plot) in the fall and winter months, I will mulch every bed with them, and top dress the lawn with a thin layer of them. If I have any left, I save them over the winter in black garbage bags with a few holes poked in the bags to facilitate good air movement. By spring, the leaves in those bags will have decomposed into leaf mold and I can use it wherever it is needed.


Here is a link that might be useful: Ruth Stout's methods

    Bookmark   July 1, 2005 at 11:45AM
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mitanoff(Z4b Ontario)

Errr .. hope you guys don't mind a question from a northerner.
I am growing my sugar babies vertically and I've got 1 mature sized melon and a handful of softball sized ones. Problem is, I had lots of little babies (bout the size of your little fingernail) that just dried up on me! Granted, my weather is different from yours. I did have a couple days of coolish (10C) nights, but I was wondering if this was not weather related but a bug or something. Maybe not enough water?. Anyone have a similar experience?

    Bookmark   July 14, 2005 at 12:25PM
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I too have had some very tiny beginnings of a Sugar Baby watermelon fall off. Not sure why it did that.

My 1 plant is a monster! Growing vines like mad. For some reason, I only have two melons though. Anyone have an idea why?

Also.. I need some guidance as to know when to pick and cut my melon open. I know it is somewhat a crapshoot; but I don't want to time it wrong since I may only have two chances.

Thanks everyone!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 8:02AM
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BrandNewGardener(z7 OK)

I have three watermelon plants and about ten watermelons on them right now. They are all pretty good in size. I've had several little watermelons fall of too. I think that's just the nature of things. I can't imagine how many watermelons I'd have if all of them survived!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 9:59AM
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owiebrain(5 MO)

How the heck did I miss this thread all of this time??

I'm growing watermelon this year, too, for the first time. We got them planted late but they're all doing well and have several fruit set and getting big. Yay!

On the mulch subject, we use the big round bales of hay. Someone around here always has spoiled ones to give away. Hubby and I can roll them where we need them but it does take both of us to move them. Tearing it off of the roll is a pain in the butt so we just unroll it where it's needed as much as we can. We don't water and never have any problems with it blowing around, even the torn-off, loose stuff. It compacts and matts down nicely very quickly.

Dr. B's and vinegar, huh? I've known about the vinegar but never heard of using Dr. B's in the garden. Cool! I'm hesitant to use vinegar in the garden for fear of it hurting my veggies but, then again, most of my wee problems are right near the veggie plants.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 3:03PM
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chevere33(z5 IN)

My son, who started his Sugar Babies in March, has melons larger than a softball. I started Orangeglos in May, and am wondering what my chances are of them maturing in this climate, given how late they were started. Any thoughts? Anything I can do to speed things up? Mine are pea-sized now! Either that or blossoms.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2005 at 11:47PM
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MogtheDog(z9 CA)

Mog the Dog here. I just found this watermelon forum while searching Google for tips on watermelon growing. I've been recording my watermelon's daily progress on another forum. I post a new picture every day so I can see how fast my little baby watermelon is growing. Check it out when you get the chance. Just click on the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Mog's Watermelon Growing Adventure!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2005 at 11:41PM
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