Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department



Specialty vegetable crops

Technical Development

Premium Vegetables

Sweet Melon

Growing Sweet Melon
Cultivation Environment : Sweet melon likes warm weather (optimum temperature for growth: 25-30oC), adequate sunlight and dry air. The most suitable soil is mildly acidic sandy loam (pH 6.0-6.8) with rich organic matters, good drainage and ventilation.
Planting and Spacing :

Transplanting method is preferred. When seedlings come to 3 true leaves (about 16-21 days), they can be transplanted to the field.

Plant spacing is about 60 cm, and row spacing 120 cm.

Application of Fertilizer and Management :
Basal dressing :

Apply 1,000 kg compost, 90 kg peanut cake and bone meal each per d.c..

(1 d.c.= 674 square metres or 7,260 square feet)

Top dressing : Apply organic liquid fertilizer (like nitrogen-rich peanut cake or fish fertilizer) of the right proportion one week after transplanting and then once every week until the fruits are fully grown. At the growing stage of the seedlings, flowering and fruiting periods, apply 30 g organic fertilizer (N:P:K=4:3:3), and 8 g bone meal and natural potassium fertilizer (50%K2O) each to the side of the plant.
Irrigation : The soil should maintain a suitable level of water from the growing stage of the seedlings to the flowering period. Less water is needed from the flowering to early fruiting period. More water is needed at the height of the fruiting period. When the fruits mature, less water should be given.
Training : Fruits are kept on the secondary vines. Adopting the "single vine for fruit setting" method, the general practice is to select the strongest secondary vines from the 11th to 15th node of the main vine for fruiting, keeping one fruit on each vine. Those vines not selected for fruiting should be removed completely. Apart from two leaves, the selected vines should be pinched. The main vine should also be pinched while keeping at least 10 leaves above the fruiting vine.
Preventive Measures against Rain, Diseases and Pests : As sweet melon does not tolerate wetness, rain is a major threat to its growth. To cultivate this fruit, farmers must put in place measures to guard against rain, flood and pests. The best option is to grow it in a greenhouse or a rain-proof and pest-resistant shed.
Harvesting : The growing period of sweet melon depends on the variety used. It normally takes 70 - 110 days from sowing to maturity. The fruit is best consumed 2 or 3 days after harvesting.


Horticulture Section, AFCD


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Last Review Date : 11 July 2018