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do you thin watermelon vines?

Posted by louisianagal z7bMS (My Page) on
Fri, Jul 23, 10 at 23:21

I am posting on Tenn. and GA. forums becoz ya'll have a more active forum. I'm actually in north MS hope you don't mind.
I have an area (a side yard or right of way) full of watermelon vines. The vines are quite healthy and there are several watermelon in various sizes. And the vines are absolutely full of flowers. I do not believe that these vines could support making watermelons from all of these flowers. So my question is should I thin out the vines to concentrate on the watermelons already there, or just let them be and see what amount of melons I get before a frost in late october or early november.???
What would you do or have you done if experienced.?

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RE: do you thin watermelon vines?

  • Posted by brandon7 6b (like 7b now) TN (My Page) on
    Sat, Jul 24, 10 at 2:08

Watermelon vines often thin themselves to some degree, but in many cases, removing excess fruit can result in a better crop.

If the vines flower early, before they produce significant foliage (if I understand your post, this doesn't sound like your vine's problem), you can remove those early flowers to delay fruit set and encourage extra growth (needed to support the fruit later on).

Once the vines start producing fruit, wait until the fruit is about golfball size before removing it. Removing smaller fruit (before the vine aborts what it considers excess fruit) may be counter-productive. The number of melons a vine can support will vary with cultivar, weather, etc. So, leave your vine alone for a little while until it sets fruit and the fruit gets golfball size. Then, remove some fruit if you think there are too many melons.

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