Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

My first batch of rock and/or honeydew melons are growing quite rapidly so I figured it was time to try out the trellis idea. Here's a start I made. For support I used 4 bamboo poles cut to about 1.6m each. The struts are river reeds from an outdoor garden screen I had lying around. I'll add more struts as the vines grow. Only time will tell whether the trellis will be strong enough. Fingers crossed!

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I tried to do that but it was impossible to distinguish between the individual plants - I planted way too many honeydews and rockmelons for that space/trellis. The intent was to thin the weak seedlings but there were none. So overcrowding is likely a cause for undersized fruit.

Here's the first rockmelon of the season. I found it this morning detached from the vine. Again, size is on the small side.

This summer I'm growing more watermelon and green honeydew than rockmelon, not because I didn't try but rather germination has been so poor. Out of 30+ seeds, only 7 became thriving plants.

I've also been bagging all the cucurbit fruit from day one. I'm not planning on losing any to the cucumber fly this time around. :)

Might be small but it looks perfect.

Have you cut it open yet?

Yeah I have. I wanted fresh seed for another batch. I looked back in my records and it's still early enough in the season to grow more .... I hope.... :)

It's not the best rockmelon from the garden (not quite soft with a slight after-taste) but still much sweeter than the two I recently bought from the store, which were simply awful. Having grown my own now, I'm sure the latter were cut from the vine before they were ready.

I'm going to do that with beans too. Some have almost finished and I reckon I can get another crop in.

I've wussed out this summer with the melons so will have to live the melon-life vicariously through yourself.

Melons take up a lot of space. They tend to escape even when trellised. I'm just a sucker for punishment :)

I think you just like a challenge is all ;)

I planted 4 rock melons and 4 honey dew.  Lost the lot.  I suspect you have a talent Joseph.  

Hi Andrew, dunno about the talent bit :) I'm not doing anything special for the melons. It's the usual mix of chicken litter/pellets + dolomite + blood n bone followed by potassium doses when the flowers are born, with fortnightly (or whenever I remember) sprinklings of Seasol in between.

You should have plenty of time to put in continuous crops of beans, Lissa. I've given up on the normal bush/pole beans for now, the beanflies are making a mess of them. I'll try again in late summer or autumn. The majority of the purple kings seemed to have survived the initial beanfly onslaught and the brown and black snake beans are as immune as ever.

I grew rock melons on a trellis where I lived outside of Cooktown. I didn't have to support the melons.I have a photo of the garden from about 1995, I'll try to attach.

Are you finding much difference between what would grow for you in Cooktown (tropical) to what will grow here (sub tropical) James? Anything you could grow there that just won't grow here?

Wonderful pic btw :) Must have gotten quite a crop from that lot.


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