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Agricultural Technology For Growing Watermelons In The Open Field
Agricultural Technology For Growing Watermelons In The Open Field

Video: Agricultural Technology For Growing Watermelons In The Open Field

Video: Agricultural Technology For Growing Watermelons In The Open Field
Video: The Success Story of Watermelon Agriculture - Amazing Agriculture Technology | How To Machines 2023, March

Watermelon in the garden

growing watermelons
growing watermelons

My site is located in the Gatchina region. Here are the features of the climate: spring comes early, two weeks earlier than in the north of the Leningrad region. When there is still a thick layer of snow in the north, bumblebees are already buzzing, birds are singing, flowers and berry bushes are blooming.

And in the midst of flowering, when all the plants trustingly open up to meet the warmth, frosts come to visit. Therefore, poor harvest of berries and apples is a frequent disaster in our country.

So you have to save yourself with watermelons. It turns out that it is very possible to grow watermelons in our northern region, and many gardeners have already mastered this culture. When I started the watermelon exercise, we didn't have a greenhouse yet.

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Therefore, I had to grow them in fact in the open ground, in a simple garden bed, under a temporary film cover. Bushes of early ripening varieties Stokes and Ogonyok grew very well, but fruits more than 1 kg did not grow. And then articles began to appear in print that large watermelons are very easy to grow in a greenhouse. I also started growing watermelons in a greenhouse, following exactly all the instructions of the authors.

Experience has shown that without biofuel bedding, watermelons grow poorly even in a greenhouse, often get sick and die. They really love to keep the roots warm. I had to lay biofuel in greenhouse beds: hay, leaves, grass, all this was seasoned with a small amount of manure.

At the end of April, she grew seedlings in small cups - 200 ml each.

At the end of May, the seedlings were planted in a greenhouse according to the scheme 25-30x40 cm, in a checkerboard pattern. In case of sudden cold snaps, I put lutrasil on the seedlings in two layers. She especially protected the ground around the bushes from cooling, covered it with several layers of newspaper. When the plants grew up to 20 cm, I tied a string to each plant for support, because in the greenhouse they will grow vertically, clinging to the support with antennae, and it is better to twine the string around the stems, like cucumbers. I left one main stem on the plants, because fruits are formed on it. Immediately removed all the stepsons, as soon as they appeared, in the future, all summer, I made sure that lateral shoots did not grow.

Pollinated by hand. I didn't leave more than one watermelon on the plant. For several years I "fought" for the harvest of watermelons in the greenhouse. Bushes often died from root rot in the midst of fruit growth. Especially if there was a streak of cold nights. I watered them only with warm water, fed them, but I could not get more than 1.5–2 kg of fruits. All the neighbors and gardeners I knew who, like me, tried to grow watermelons in a greenhouse, had the same result.

Of course, the watermelons were sweet, sugar. There was a lot of joy from them, but I wanted even more. So that the watermelons are like Astrakhan. A couple of years ago, at the Agrorus fair in Gavan, luxurious watermelons weighing up to 7 kg appeared, grown in the open field near Kolpino in the Leningrad Region by wonderful gardeners - the Romanovs.

It was a sensation, because until now the Epifantsev family from Sinyavino was considered an unsurpassed "watermelon", who from year to year grew rather large watermelons in a large greenhouse - mostly about 4 kg. And a year later, at the same fair, a watermelon weighing 20 kg, also grown by the Romanovs in an open garden, was put on display! Thanks to the Romanovs, they published in all details the technology of growing their sugar beauties in one of the issues of our magazine.

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growing watermelons
growing watermelons

Watermelon. Male and female flowers

The method is based on a thick layer of biofuel under a layer of soil rich in humus. I immediately adopted their method. In the spring, as soon as the snow melted, I chose the warmest sunny place on the site, allocated there a bed with dimensions of 1.5 x 2.2 m. She removed the top layer of soil.

At the bottom of the resulting hole, I laid a layer of cardboard, twigs, chips, etc. to protect the top layer of the bed from the lower cold. The Romanovs laid a thick layer of chips, but I had no chips. They laid a layer of manure on the chips. I didn't have any manure either, but I really wanted watermelons. So instead of manure, I put in a layer of hay that I had stored last summer. Sprinkled it with urea, poured hot water on it, added half-decomposed remains from the compost heap for sourdough. A removed layer of soil was laid on the formed pillow, to which ash, well-rotted compost and mineral fertilizers were added.

The result was a garden bed rising above the general soil level, which I covered with plastic wrap, and covered it with several layers of lutrasil at night. After two weeks, the soil there warmed up to 22 ° С, while on simple beds it was only 8 ° С. This means that biofuels have started to "work".

She shed the soil in the garden with Fitosporin M. In the meantime, she grew watermelon seedlings at home. I sowed watermelon seeds, as usual, on April 15-20. I used half-liter containers for dairy products, because my previous experience showed that if you sow in small containers, the root system develops poorly. The seeds were planted to a depth of 4-5 cm so that the cotyledons would come out of the ground without "caps". Watermelons are very thermophilic plants; at temperatures below 15 ° C, they do not emerge or grow. Therefore, I always put the crops in the warmest place, and the seedlings appear on the 7-8th day, after which I transfer them to the brightest place so that they stretch less.

On a warm day on May 20, when frosts were no longer expected, she planted seedlings, having previously hardened them, on a prepared bed. Three plants - a hybrid of the Moscow Region Charleston, three plants - a sort of Siberian Lights, one plant - a hybrid of Susi. Plants have almost completely mastered the earthen lump in capsules with their roots. She gently shook them out and dropped them into holes filled with warm water.

Not deepened, on the advice of the Romanovs, so as not to rot the root collars. She planted all the kids in one strip in the center of the garden bed in a checkerboard pattern so that the distance between the seedlings was at least 50 cm. The planting density was twice that of the Romanovs (they get one plant per square meter). I covered the planting with a double layer of lutrasil, added plastic wrap at night.

Plants quickly took root in a new place. I watered them only with heated water. Together with watering, she gave top dressing with full mineral fertilizer.

In the future, I watered only when it was very dry, and the plants were going to wither. After watering - surface loosening. The first time after planting the seedlings, I made sure that the lashes spread evenly over the surface of the ridge. She did not stepchild, did not pinch anything - she did everything according to the advice of the Romanovs. The whips lengthened rapidly, the leaves grew larger and healthier. Soon they intertwined, all the varieties got mixed up, covered the whole garden with greenery. On June 6, the first bush of the Siberian Lights variety bloomed.

After another week, all the plants bloomed profusely. The flowers of watermelons are light yellow, on hairy legs, a small watermelon is sure to hide under a female flower. Bees, circling over the watermelon flowers, for some reason flew past them, preferring flowers of borago and onion-batuna. I think the fact is that ants settled in the plantings, which ate all the nectar in the watermelon flowers. For this reason, she pollinated the plants herself. I usually use a brush to remove pollen from a male flower. Be sure to check if the pollen is removed.

It happens that the pollen is not yet ripe, and there is no pollen on the brush. You have to wait half a day or a day for the pollen to mature. And the female flower is also not immediately ready for pollination. A shiny drop of nectar should appear on the pistil. It is better to pollinate watermelons in the morning. If the flower is pollinated, its corolla withers, and it necessarily bends down. Its leg is rapidly lengthening, the watermelon under the flower already noticeably increases in size during the first three days after pollination. All pollination activities need to be completed before July 15, so I try to pollinate the first flowers on the bush.

At later periods of pollination, as my experience shows, the watermelon will grow, the pulp will turn red, but it will not have time to accumulate wonderful sweetness. Quickly set up and began to gain weight. They obviously liked the garden. During the period of pouring the fruits, you can water more often, but it must be remembered that with frequent abundant watering, watermelons are less sweet. At this time, it is useful to feed the plants with ash - a glass per square meter. Every evening I covered the ridge for the night with lutrasil, because the nights were very cold almost all summer. At this time, two plants of the Siberian Lights variety and one Charleston near Moscow got sick with root rot and died, although I watered the ridge with Fitosporin.

On the rest, by the end of August, charming watermelons ripened - 11 pieces weighing from 1.5 to 3.6 kg. They turned out to be very sweet, much sweeter than the purchased southern ones. I began to ponder why the Romanovs have much larger watermelons. Most likely, their soil layer was more fertile than on my bed, because it was flavored with manure. In addition, their biofuel layer is a thick layer of manure, and not hay, like mine. Plants, having mastered the soil layer, get to this fertile dung layer, and the fruits begin to "overeat".

Interestingly, one of the watermelons that were presented by the Romanovs at the exhibition weighed 20 kg. However, when it was cut, it was unripe.

Conclusions: first, you should not strive to grow the largest watermelon, because you cannot get any benefit from such a watermelon. Second, you cannot overfeed watermelon plants with manure.

When the watermelons begin to ripen, their leg and peel dry out around the place where the stem is attached, the skin acquires a gloss. If you slap your palm on a ripe watermelon or give it a gentle click on the side, it also rings like a real Astrakhan watermelon. We must learn how to choose the time to cut watermelons. Both unripe and overexposed fruits on the bush lose some of their taste. Unripe fruits ripen in bed, but they are less sweet. The ripeness of the fruit can be determined only by the combination of the characteristics described above, and even then you can be mistaken.

I enjoyed growing watermelons in the open field. Now it is not difficult. First of all, you need to choose the earliest varieties for planting. Now on sale there are many early ripening and ultra-early ripening varieties that have time to ripen perfectly in our beds. They can be selected by weight, by the shape of the fruit, by the timing of ripening, by the color of the peel. There are varieties with a striped green skin and yellow flesh, and there are varieties with a yellow skin and red flesh. Even watermelons without seeds appeared. There are many large-fruited varieties among them.

Now abroad, small - portioned - watermelons weighing 1 kg are becoming fashionable. Anyway, we prefer large watermelons. I think watermelons will soon begin their triumphant march through our gardens.

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