taradal
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Posts: 63
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:39 pm
Location: Acworth, Georgia

Baby watermelons keep rotting

I planted 4 Moon and Stars Watermelon plants in late May. The vines look good-vigorous and healthy and have produced lots of flowers. Every time I find a little watermelon, I mulch under it with straw, hoping it won't rot. So far, I've lost 7 or 8 little melons-they look good, for a while-maybe grow anywhere to an inch to 4 inches long, then start to look pale, then start rotting. I do have one melon that's made it-still growing- measured the circumference at 19 inches, so it's looking good. But what happened to the others? And it's still happening-found another rotten baby, this morning.
I have side dressed all the melon plants with compost, fed twice with compost tea and I use a seaweed foliar spray every couple of weeks. Our weather, here, has been hot and humid, but without a lot of rain, so I water with soaker hoses every few days.
Hope someone has some ideas-thanks!

john gault
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Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 8:53 pm
Location: Atlantic Beach, Fl. (USDA Hardiness Zone 9a)

I've had that happen also, still don't know the cause, but suspect overwatering. They really don't need too much water, that's been my experience.

taradal
Cool Member
Posts: 63
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:39 pm
Location: Acworth, Georgia

OK-thanks. That might, indeed, be the problem. I do intensive gardening and I was also watering tomatoes, beans and cukes in the same general area. Just pulled up the last tomatoes and cukes, so I will just stop watering and see what happens.
I'm thinking that maybe melons are not the right choice for my garden. . .

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rainbowgardener
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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

This is strictly a guess, because I haven't heard about that so much with watermelons, but we hear about it all the time with zucchinis, which are in the same cucurbit family. With the zucchinis, it is often a pollination issue. Cucurbits have separate male and female flowers. The female flower comes with a little embryo fruit behind it. If the flower is not pollinated, often the little fruit keeps growing for a little while, before it shrivels up and drops off.

If this is the case you can use the male blossoms to hand pollinate the female ones.
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Gary350
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Location: TN. 50 years of gardening experience.

You plants need lime.

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