Latin Name: Cucumis melo var. reticulatus
Item #: 196L
MUSKMELON (Cantaloupe) for fresh market
GREENHOUSE: For extra early crops in the North - sow seed inside from Apr. 15th. - May 15th. Direct seed into 3 in/8 cm peat pots at 2 or 3 seeds per pot; 1/2 in/13 mm deep. Soil temp. is critical - seed requires 5 to 10 days at 65-75°F/18- 24°C soil temp. Seed will not germinate at lower soil temps. All hybrid seed should be sown indoors by the above dates - it's too expensive and too tempting to the birds for direct seeding. You can conserve soil temp. and beat the weeds by laying down black plastic, covering the ends with soil and transplanting your pots through the plastic. Combines with plant covers such as "Hot Hats" you can set out plants in this manner about May 20th. or early June in rows 6 ft/2 m. apart, plants 2 ft/61 cm. apart in the rows. Never move the vines, when cultivating - they shade shallow, sensitive root systems which follow the vine growth - just under the soil Remember, deep cultivation will limit yields.
DIRECT SOWING: seed can be sown out-doors in late May or early June. Cantaloupes like warm sandy soil and will not tolerate a highly acid soil (too much fertilizer). Sow in rows as above, make sure soil temp. is at least 65°F/l 8°C before sowing.
HARVESTING: Do not trample vines, gentle pressure at the base of the stem will disengage ripe fruit.