If you have developed an interest in growing watermelons, you may have discovered that they grow differently from most fruits and vegetables. They require a long duration of warm weather, and they are grown in a particular form of soil. Through your research, you may come across an interesting method of growing watermelons and are curious about whether or not it’s true. Can watermelons grow in sand?
Yes, watermelons grow best in sandy soil. There are specific types of watermelon that can grow in pure desert sand, but the most common watermelons need a good mixture of sand and clay to survive and grow to their full potential. Sand in soil is very light in weight and allows proper drainage. This is huge in preventing root rot during the watermelon growth process.
Has this sparked your interest yet? Keep reading for more information on growing watermelons in the correct soil.
What Type Of Soil Is Best For Watermelons?
Watermelons grow best in a sandy mixture of soil. It should also contain an adequate amount of clay and silt. Too much clay and silt, however, can cause clogging. The most important thing to know when preparing soil for watermelon plants is that it must drain correctly.
Sand and other organic matter will allow the soil to do so. Without proper drainage, a heavy rain or an abundance of water will puddle towards the roots of the watermelon plants and can cause root rot. You must also have a large amount of well composed soil for watermelon vines to develop and sprawl out. It is recommended that each plant has at least 20 square feet to grow.
When it comes to the nutrients in the soil, watermelons are heavy feeders, meaning they require a large number of nutrients to grow and thrive. Most gardeners recommend a slow release fertilizer that is well balanced with various nutrients. Lastly, the soil temperature must be warmed to 70 degrees Fahrenheit to be truly ready to grow watermelon plants.
How To Adjust Soil To Be More Suited To Watermelon Growth
How To Adjust Soil To Be More Suited To Watermelon Growth
- Purchase a pH test kit at your local home and gardening store or online and test the soil you are planting your watermelons in. The pH of your soil should be between 6.0 and 6.5 to be adequate for producing watermelons. If your soil’s pH is off, purchase a fertilizer to supply it with more nutrients.
- Your soil must properly drain water to prevent root rotting, which easily occurs in watermelon plants. Your soil should be easily clumped into a ball. If it is, then it’s not draining enough. Try adding different types of earthly matter into your soil. This could include leaves, grass clippings, wood chips, more sand, or small rocks.
- Pack your soil full of nutrients by adding well aged and rotted compost or manure to it. The best time to prepare your soil with aged matter is in the fall and spring.
Varieties Of Watermelon That Thrive In Sandy Soil
- Desert King- Known for its ability to grow with very little water and high amounts of sun exposure, this type of watermelon grows well in many desert climates. They grow to be around 20 pounds, and once they are fully ripe, they can stay fresh and edible for up to 30 days on the vine.
- Bush Sugar Baby- These are recognized as a sweeter and juicier fruit. The sugar content is higher than many other varieties. The size of Bush Sugar Baby tends to be on the lower end of the scale. They typically grow to around 12 pounds. They are considered a short vine/bush variety of watermelon.
- Crimson Sweet- This is another larger variety weighing around 30-5 pounds and growing to around 12 inches long. With a much higher sugar content than many other types of watermelon, these taste very sweet, hence the name.
- Charleston Gray- This variety is on the larger side. The plant’s vines grow very long compared to other watermelon varieties, and they take about 85-100 days to grow and ripen their fruit. Each watermelon can grow to 24 inches long and weigh around 30-35 pounds. They are known for their bold and delicious flavors.
- Sugar Baby- This very small species usually weighs around and can weigh anywhere from 8-10 pounds. Sugar Baby’s take around 90 days to fully grow and prepare for harvest time. The rinds of this variety are very dark green. Sometimes it can be close to black.
- Yellow Doll- This variety only takes 65-70 days to develop and be ready for harvest. That is a much slower time frame than many other types of watermelon. They are very sweet in taste. They are the smallest of all other varieties listed, weighing in at only 4-8 pounds.
Overall, the answer to the question stands. Watermelons can grow in sand. They grow best in sand, but the sand must be mixed with a good balance of other components to produce tasty watermelons. Watermelons need soil with great drainage so that water doesn’t puddle towards the roots and cause rotting.
A mixture of sand, clay, silt, and other larger materials such as wood chips and leaves will create a material that will allow the proper drainage. Watermelon soil must also include the proper nutrients, especially considering that watermelons are heavy feeders and require adequate nutrients to produce.
As described above, the soil should have a pH balance of around 6.0 to 6.5. There are many different options to revive soil and make it more suited to growing watermelons. If you believe your watermelons aren’t growing correctly, always check to ensure your soil fits all the required components.
Lastly, if you feel more knowledgeable and inspired in growing watermelons, refer to the list provided above to get an idea of the type of watermelon you might want to grow.
Hi there, my name is Allie and welcome to my blog; GareningWithAllie!
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