The Q&A Archives: Cantaloupes And Frost

Question: We had an unexpected, early frost which killed the foliage on my cantaloupe plants. The fruit is softball-sized or larger and is netted. What is the best way to ripen the cantaloupes?

Answer: Melons should be allowed to ripen on the vine before they're harvested. If your melons are immature and frost has killed back the vines, there isn't a lot of hope for them. The stem of a vine-ripened fruit should break cleanly with no pressure at all on the stem; just picking up the fruit should be enough to detatch it from the vine. If your cataloupes are still firmly attached, they aren't mature enough to harvest and won't ripen fully. Wish I had better news for you!

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