Honey Rock Melon

In 2019 we planted 8 types of melons (including Honey Rock) in our Sunnyvale garden. For Christmas, Marie had given me a ‘Fruit pack’ of seeds.

The Honey Rock melons are up to six inches in diameter with a tough, coarsely netted skin and sweet, flavorful salmon colored flesh. The plants are vigorous, producing five to seven fruits per plant and are fusarium wilt resistant.

Melons grow much better when planted in the ground rather than in a container. If you have followed my website for awhile you know that I do not have a lot of ground. So I overlapped: Early in June I planted the seeds below the apricot tree in the former hot-tub. This did not interfere with the apricot harvest and now the vines have sprawled over a 12×12 area.

Cantaloupe (muskmelon, mushmelon, rockmelon, sweet melon) is a variety of the Cucumis melo species in the Cucurbitaceae family. … Originally, cantaloupe referred only to the non-netted, orange-fleshed melons of Europe, but now may mean any orange-fleshed melon of C. melo.

‘Honey Rock’, aka ‘Sugar Rock’, is a result of a stabilized cross between ‘Champlain’, ‘Irondequoit’, and ‘Honey Dew’ and was introduced by Watt Richardson in 1925.

PLANTING:

The seeds germinate in 4 to 10 days. The fruit are usually ripe in 80 days after successful pollination.

Indoors– Individual biodegradable peat/cowpots 1/2” deep, 3-4 weeks before last frost with soil temperature 70 degrees. Transplant 36” apart after last frost without disturbing the roots.

Outdoors– 1/2” deep after last frost in warm soil at least 70 degrees.

Tips– Plant in fertile soil amended with compost or well rotted manure and keep well watered. They benefit from growing on black plastic and by using row covers for weed, insect control, and more rapid growth.

Harvest– Look for the following signs as it does take some practice on telling when they are ready to harvest. The skin tone changes and netting becomes heavy, the ends soften, they will slip from the vines or a gentle tug will pull it away from the vine, a crack develops around the stem, the closet tendril to the stem dries, and the aroma increases when ripe.

The melons will continue to ripen after being picked. However, their sugar does not change after harvest, so they don’t get sweeter with age. … Set the cantaloupe in a paper bag once you want to speed up the ripening process.

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