The Q&A Archives: Bland-Tasting Cantaloupes

Question: What can we do to improve on last year's crop of cantaloupes and honeydew melons, which grew large and great-looking but didn't have a hint of sweetness.

Answer: It sure is frustrating to tend a crop only to be rewarded with unedible fruit. There are several conditions that contribute to bland-tasting melons: too much nitrogen fertilizer, picking before the fruit is ripe, cool temperatures, and cloudy skies. Providing the right micronutrients can improve flavor as well. Here's a preplanting fertilizer recipe you can try next year (enough for 2 or 3 melon plants). Place the mixture under rows or hills up to a week before planting.<br>* 3 shovels of soil<br>* 1shovel of compost<br>* 2 shovels of manure<br>* 1 shovel of peat moss<br>* 1 cup bone meal<br>* 1 cup cottonseed meal<br>* 2 cups alfalfa meal<br>* 1 cup wood ashes<br>* 1 cup dolomitic limestone<br>

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