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All About Cantaloupe

CAN I GROW CANTALOUPE?

This easy growing specialty melon can be direct sown after all danger of frost, or started indoors 3-4 weeks before setting out. Melons take some space to grow and vine, so leave enough room for cantaloupe to spread.
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PLANT HISTORY

Legend has it that cantaloupe seed was brought to America on one of Christopher Columbus's voyages.
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CANTALOUPE SEEDS OR PLANTS?

Cantaloupe can be direct sown after all danger of frost, or started indoors 3-4 weeks before setting out.
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CULTIVATION

Thin growing cantaloupe seedlings to 1 foot apart for best growth.
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GROWING TIPS

Grow cantaloupe in rows spaced 3 to 4 feet apart or in "hills" with groups of 2 or 3 plants per "hill". Cantaloupes can also be trained on a trellis or fence to save space. Cantaloupes need a constant supply of water, and particular attention should be paid during summer dry spells.
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INSECTS & DISEASES

Cantaloupe is rarely bothered by pests and disease. It's best to rotate your melon crops each year ensuring that you are not planting in the same spot each year.
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HARVEST TIPS

Melons need to ripen fully on the vine. They do not ripen well after they are harvested. Cantaloupes develop a wonderful fragrance when they are ready to pick - you can't miss it. The fruit should slip easily from the vine and the blossom end should feel soft to the touch.
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RECIPES & STORAGE

Cantaloupes are delicious and refreshing summer snacks as well as a gourmet breakfast and dessert specialty. They will last for a week or more in the refrigerator.
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Gardening Tip of the Day

  • Trees can be safely planted in the fall until about 4 to 6 weeks before the ground freezes. When planting, make sure the hole is at least twice the size of the tree’s root ball. Loosen root ball and spread out roots before planting so roots are encouraged to grow outward. Stake younger trees to withstand winter winds using a loose fabric or piece of rubber hose to avoid injuring bark. Avoid using wire that can cut into the trunk as the tree grows. Add a few inches of mulch around root zone of the tree, but keep mulch at least three or four inches away from the base of the stem to prevent rot. Add some slow-release fertilizer in early spring.