How can I grow sweeter watermelons? My soil is sandy and alkaline.
Hardiness Zone: 7a
By pecanblondie from Las Cruces, NM
Check with your local county extension office! these folks are master gardeners, and well familiar with your local area and extremely knowledgeable! They are great!
I have always throughout the growing season top dressed, pile on, some compost around the planting mound. I believe that has helped, however, I've recently learned that the melons need a really dry spell as it's maturing to the end with less water to sweeten it up. I wasn't water-logging them but I was always making sure if it didn't rain in a couple/few hot days to make sure I "helped" out Mother Nature. Well, I didn't this year. I didn't have watermelon but my cantaloupe was the sweetest ever! We were amazed at how sweet they turned out(just ate my last one last night). In this case I truly believe that, less is more! Hope that was helpful.
Protect it from what? Let it grow, then eat it! If it gets bugs, use an organic spray to rid them. If it gets a powdery mildew (which they are susceptible to), use Serenade disease control (it's organic). But other than that, let it grow and enjoy it.
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