For those who have not tried to grow melons before, it’s vital to know these plants have a hefty set of requirements to grow healthy and mature. This doesn’t mean that it must be a challenging process getting them to that point, however. Making sure that they have what they need early on with daily care will ensure that they make a plentiful harvest when the time comes. This is especially true when using a trellis. These tips for growing watermelon on a trellis will help you get the most out of your crop every year.
Preparation Ensures a Strong Start
Whenever you start any garden, you’ll need to keep a few things in mind. Having the correct spacing for your plants, ensuring the light cycles are on point, and having a solid structure to grow them in will benefit your experience. Above all else, plants need water, food, sunlight, and air to grow.
They aren’t much different from human beings when it comes to their necessities. The quality of all these necessary elements will also determine the health and wellness of your plants. So, it’s always important to have the right tools on deck before planting. You should also know the conditions that they thrive in.
Quality of Soil Enriches the Grow
Melons are super heavy feeders, and as such, you need to put them on a regimented schedule so that they always have the nutrients they thrive on. This is different from just sticking them into the dirt. The soil that you should place them in should already contain the nutrients they need.
However, they’ll quickly suck the nutrients out of the dirt because they feed constantly. This will leave them hungry if you don’t stay on top of feeding them. Therefore, you’ll need to provide them with an organic fertilizer. It doesn’t matter whether it’s liquid or solid. The liquid will be more of an instant feed, so measurements will be most important when feeding.
As for the solid fertilizer, this will tend to be water-soluble but have the effect of feeding slower. So, you’ll need to add it less often. If you constantly add some nutrients to the soil, the watermelons should have all the vitamins and minerals they require to survive.
Selection of the Right Plant
Variety is everything whenever it comes to gardening. Some species thrive better in different climates and conditions. Some are slow to grow, whereas others sprout almost overnight and produce in no time. This will have to be something worth investigating depending on where you live and what the climate there is like. Additionally, account for how vigorous and healthy the variety you’re planting is overall.
Alongside that, whenever planting anything, it’s always a good idea to do so in numbers. This means when you have an allotted number of plants that you can put in your garden, you should make sure to germinate just a few extra. By doing this, you can weed out all of the weak and diseased plants that aren’t performing well or look questionable. After removing those, you’ll have a reliable and strong crop that you can be sure will give you the bounty that you have worked so hard for all season long.
Waiting for the Last Frost
It’s always important when planting to know the range of temperatures to go with before putting your watermelon seeds outside. On the back end of most seed packets, there are ideal ranges. In other words, the packets may list times to give a rough estimate of when to plant your garden. But it will ultimately be up to you when you decide to proceed. You’ll have to check your weather daily to ensure that the last frost of the year has passed, as frosts can kill your plants.
Constructing a Strong Trellis
Building a trellis can be as easy or as difficult as you want to make it, but what should remain standard is its strength and ability to hold your vines and fruit off the ground. This means that you can space out your trellises and design them in any fashion you choose, so long as the vines can grow all over them throughout the year. This is also why you need the space, as melons are vigorously growing fruits that can easily take over your lawn and garden. You might implement fencing staples if you’re working with a wooden or wire trellis.
Training Is a Daily Pursuit
As the plants grow, you’ll need to train them. This means that they’ll need guidance on what direction they need to take as their vines wind themselves along the trellises. You can wrap them around the trellis yourself or just lead them in the direction you desire. Carrying this out will prevent them from taking over the ground and suffocating themselves and the soil they will ultimately cover if they lack training.
Slings To Hold the Fruit
Slings will be important if you want to take some of the stress off your trellises. You can make these by using any old netting or fabric you have lying around. Cut into a large square and then take all four ends and tie them together around the closest point to the trellis where the fruit hangs. Cushion the fruit from the bottom during this step. This should take the stress off the vine and trellis and redirect it into the sling.
Watering Will Remain Constant
Because melons are heavy feeders, they also require lots of watering. This should be an everyday routine until harvest if you want to get the most out of your crop. If you fail to do this, your vines may wither and die. It’s also possible that they won’t put out fruit, despite all your efforts. So, make sure that you deeply water the plants daily.
Harvest When Ripe
Now that you have met all the requirements and taken the best care of your plants all season long, you can reap the harvest as your reward. Check the tendrils that the fruit grows from to determine whether it’s ripe. If the tendril turns brown and starts to wither, you know that it’s ready for the taking.
Gardening can seem to be an overwhelming chore if you don’t prepare in advance. Growing watermelons can seem to be a monumental task in itself, but it doesn’t have to be. Growing from a trellis can take all the guesswork out altogether, making the activity enjoyable. These have been the tips for growing watermelon on a trellis. They’re all you need to know about alternative ways to grow watermelon.