The Q&A Archives: How to grow sweet cantaloupes

Question: I've successfully grown my first cantaloupe plant in my veg. garden. My first harvest was quite a disappointment because the fruit was not sweet. I water daily and fertilize with chicken manure. What can I do to help

Answer: I don't think your fruit was quite ripe when you harvested. A ripe canteloupe will be aromatic, sweet and juicy. It can be difficult to tell exactly when a fruit is ready to harvest. The stem should separate easily from the fruit. I usually just pick the fruit up, holding it a few inches from the soil. If the stem pulls off without much pressure from me, the fruit is ripe. If it is still firmly attached, I set it back down and try again a few days later. Give this method a try.

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