TROUBLE IN PARADISE
• Sowing melons? Don’t open your seed packets before Labour Weekend, warns Gerard Martin from Kings Seeds. Sow in trays indoors with heat (at 25°C, watermelons germinate in 7-10 days, whereas at 15°C they may never sprout).
• Warm up the soil with black plastic or transplant seedlings under a cloche to lessen transplant shock brought on by the dramatic difference in indoor versus outdoor temperatures. It’s not cool days but cold nights that check their growth.
• Be careful when weeding as melon vines are easy to accidentally uproot.
• Melons need water, but not too much at once, especially after the skins have hardened, or this can cause them to split apart before fully ripe (pictured).