Growing Rock Melon (Cantaloupe)
Rock Melon (or Cantaloupe for the Northern hemisphere) is the fresh sweet melon that has high water content. They make a refreshing guilt-free snack for those hot summer days - so why not grow some yourself? Rock Melons have many different names, Cantaloupe for the Northern Hemisphere, Spanspek for South Africa but they also go by muskmelon, mush melons and Persian melons. Rock Melon is part of the Curcurbitaceae family which consists of about 965 species including Squash, Zucchini, Watermelon and Cucumber.
If growing from a seed, Rock Melon is best grown in seed trays for 4-6 weeks once there is no further risk of frost. When sowing the seeds make sure to sow 40-60cm apart in full sun. Rock Melon is best grown in hot climates so the soil will need to be above 20°C before sowing. When it comes to harvesting your melons be sure to pay attention to the colour, Rock Melons will change from green and grey to brown or yellow. The Rind on the outside of the fruit will become more raised and the tendril closest to the stem turns brown and dry it is ready!
McGregor's Rock Melon Seed Hale's Best
A tasty and refreshing summer fruit. Prefers hot and dry climates. This variety requires a long, warm season to allow the fruit to mature but it's worth the wait. Oval fruit with delicious orange flesh, best served cold.
How to Sow
Choose a well drained site in full sun. Sow these seeds in trays or pots for subsequent transplanting or, after frosts, sow direct where to grow in a well prepared seedbed Sprinkle seeds 15cm apart and cover to a depth of 1cm Later, transplant to 1 metre apart.
Care for seedling
Keep seedbed evenly moist during the germination period of 7-10 days. Apply McGregor's FruitMax 2 weeks after germination for healthier plants and a maximum crop. Protect your vege garden from snails and slugs with McGregor's Snaa and Slug bait and from White Butterfly with McGregor's DerrisDust.
Hints & Tips
Melons must have warm growing conditions and shelter from wind. Keep plants irrigated through summer by soak hoses or similar. A void watering the foliage. Melons require a long growing season. Ideally you can start them a few weeks early under cover, or in a glasshouse.
25 February 2024