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If earlier we were looking forward to August to feast on sweet juicy melons, now the breeders have bred varieties that can be grown in their summer cottage.
In climatically cool regions, you need to choose early ripening varieties of melon for growing.
Variety of melon varieties
There are many varieties of melon bred. Let's consider the most popular ones.
Amber. Medium early variety. Brings harvest in 70-85 days from germination. The lashes are long, medium power. Fruits are bright yellow, smooth, oblong-oval. The weight of a ripe melon is 1-2.4 kg. The pulp is juicy, white, sweet.
Millennium. The variety is early maturing. Hybrid. Suitable for open ground. The whips are short. Fruits are smooth, reticulate, oval-round in shape. The pulp is sweet, white.
Honey melon. Medium early variety. Fruits are yellow-greenish, smooth, elongated, roundish-oval in shape. The pulp is sweet, yellow, green, yellow-red.
Moon. Medium early variety. Yields a harvest in 75-80 days from germination. Fruits are yellow, smooth, reticulate, oval in shape. The weight of the ripe fruit is 1 kg. The pulp is not too juicy, sweet, creamy.
Collective farmer. The variety is mid-season. The crop gives in 75-90 days from the day of germination. Fruits are orange-yellow, smooth, spherical. The weight of a ripe melon is up to 0.5 kg. The pulp is sweet, viscous, white.
Altai. The variety is early maturing. The crop gives in 65-70 days after germination. The whips are long. Fruits are oval in shape, weighing 0.6-1.2 kg. The pulp is sweet, juicy, aromatic. The variety is suitable for growing in cold Siberian conditions.
Melon planting and care
Sowing melon seedlings
Having chosen the desired variety, you can start sowing melon seedlings. The best time to do this is April 1-10. The seeds must be soaked and germinated. The soil should be taken neutral in acidity, not very fatty, fertile.
Sow two seeds in plastic cups with good drainage. After sowing, place the cups in a warm place, covering them with plastic. The optimum temperature is 25-26 ° C.
After germination of seedlings, polyethylene must be removed, and the container with seedlings must be transferred to a bright place. The seedlings are ready for planting when four to five true leaves appear.
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Melon seedlings planting
At the end of May, the seedlings can be transplanted into open ground. It is better to choose a place where legumes, cabbage, potatoes were previously grown. Melon grows well in calm, sunny areas.
First, you need to dig holes at a distance of 0.5 m, add humus to them (two kg each), water abundantly. Melon seedlings should be planted in the porridge formed in the hole, sprinkling with dry earth. Melon seedlings must not be buried.
Make the first feeding with nitrogen fertilizers (mullein, chicken droppings, saltpeter) 10-15 days after planting in the ground. The second and subsequent ones - every 10-12 days from the first feeding, but fertilizers should already be complex mineral fertilizers (chicken droppings with the addition of ash).
After the appearance of the fifth or sixth leaf on the melon seedlings, the top must be pinched, after which lateral shoots will appear. You need to choose two strong shoots, the rest must be removed, and the plant itself must be spud. Leave 3-5 ovaries on one bush, the rest must be removed.
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Watering and loosening
For a melon, moderate watering is enough every 4-5 days, since it grows on a melon almost without water. If the weather is cloudy, then one watering per week is enough. It is necessary to water at the root or in the aisles, avoiding moisture on the leaves.
If there was abundant dew in the morning, then watering is no longer necessary. If the soil is too dry, the plant should not be poured, otherwise the fruits may burst. And in general, after the appearance of ovaries, it is better to reduce watering to a minimum.
It is necessary to loosen in the aisles so as not to injure the roots. Weed as needed to prevent weeds from sucking moisture from the soil.
Collection, storage of crops
Melon fruits are harvested depending on ripeness. If you had to collect not quite ripe melons, saving the crop from frost, then they will ripen perfectly at home. For storing melons, it is better to place them in boxes, the bottom of which is covered with straw or sawdust. The shelf life will increase if the melons are stored in a dark, cool place.
If desired, the melon can be grown in any region of Russia. You just need to choose the right variety.
In the open field, you need to protect the melons from frost and, if necessary, cover with foil.
When grown in a greenhouse, it is not necessary to allow waterlogging by regularly ventilating the planting site. It is advisable to spray the melon with sugar syrup in order to attract insects for pollination.
Try it, pick varieties and at the end of summer you will feast on fragrant melons from your own garden.
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