Bonnie Plants Honeydew Cantaloupe is a favorite heirloom producing pretty, spherical melons with pastel green flesh that tastes sweet and juicy. An excellent source of vitamin C. Ripens more quickly in hot climates. Needs lots of water, but thrives in arid climates if irrigated. Keep foliage healthy for maximum sweetness and flavor.
- Light Full sun
- Fruit size 3 to 6 pounds
- Matures 90 to 115 days
- Plant spacing 36 to 42 inches apart
- Plant size Long vine
Growing cantaloupe and honeydew melons at home is so rewarding, as these fruits offer an explosive taste that doesn’t compare to their store-bought cousins. The key is plenty of moisture, sunlight, and heat. Melons demand two to three months of heat, which makes growing them in northern regions challenging, but not impossible. By using a black ground cover to warm soil and floating row covers to trap warm air near plants, gardeners in any part of the country can count on cutting into the homegrown goodness of melons. These sun-ripened fruits pack plenty of vitamin C and antioxidants into every bite, combining great taste with great nutrition.
Quick Guide to Growing Cantaloupe and Honeydew Melons
- Plant cantaloupe in an area with warm soil (70°F+) and plenty of sun.
- Cantaloupes are sprawlers, so plant them 36 to 42 inches apart in fertile, well-drained soil.
- Growing cantaloupes require a lot of nutrients, so it’s best to improve your soil by mixing in several inches of compost or other rich organic matter.
- Cantaloupes need a lot of water, so keep soil moist and avoid wetting the leaves—soaker hoses and drip irrigation are best.
- Mulch well and eliminate weeds early so vines can run freely.
- Protect young fruits by getting them off the ground. A small upside-down flower pot will work well.
- Avoid pinching off shoots because an abundance of healthy leaves will produce sweeter fruit.
- For best flavor, leave the largest fruit growing on the vine and pinch off any young fruits that begin to form.
- Harvest cantaloupe when they reach ideal color and the netting is pronounced.