Is there anything tastier than juicy sweet Cantaloupe? Of course, not!
Cantaloupe is a delicious heat-loving melon that has a relatively long growing season. Once it is picked, it continues to ripen but does not get any sweater. But when to harvest Cantaloupe? You want to pick some cantaloupe, but you are not quite sure when to pick it. Of course, you do not want to pluck it too early or too late as you cannot eat a tasteless or bitter cantaloupe.
Today, we will discuss when the right time to harvest Cantaloupe is.
When to harvest Cantaloupe?
Cantaloupe is a type of melon that has a tan-green rind. The rind of the Cantaloupe is covered with a spiderweb-like pattern. The flesh of this melon is bright orange and sweet. Bear in mind that some varieties of Cantaloupe may also be stripped.
Cantaloupe is a sun-loving fruit that takes about 65-90 days to reach maturity. But it depends on the variety you have planted. How to know when Cantaloupe is ready to pick? It is highly important to pick on time if you want to enjoy the sweet melon. If you harvest them too early, they wouldn’t be sweet enough. If you wait too long, they will turn mealy and squishy.
Knowing when to pick a Cantaloupe is not as difficult as it seems to be. Before getting into the details, let’s take a quick look at how to plant Cantaloupes:
- How to plant Cantaloupes?
First of all, you need to prepare the planting site. Bear in mind that Cantaloupes do best in well-draining soil. Plant the seeds 1 inch deep 18 inches apart. If you are planting them in hilled rows, then they should be about 3 feet apart. You have a limited space to plant Cantaloupes; then, vines can be trained up a support. Take care of the plants when they are growing. You should plant melons in full sun.
- Harvesting Cantaloupes:
You should first check whether the Cantaloupes are completely ready for harvest or not. To determine if the Cantaloupe is ready to pick, look at the color of the melon. Look if it has turned from green to tan or yellowish-grey color between netting. The netting pattern covers the second layer of the rind. If the color behind the netting is green, the melon is not ready to be picked. However, if the color behind the netting is yellowish or cream, then it is ready to harvest.
When the rind color is creamy yellow, you need to smell the melon. Put your nose right down to the blossom end to take a whiff. If there is a musky odor coming from the melon, it means it is ready to pick. But if you don’t smell anything, then probably the melon is not ready yet.
A ripe Cantaloupe does not require pulling to harvest it from the vine. It should easily slip from the vine when the melon is ready. The stem will become brown, and you may also see a crack near the point of attachment.
- How to pick Cantaloupe?
Now you know the right time to pluck a Cantaloupe. But do you know how you should do it? Well, you should not damage the melon when plucking it. First of all, you should inspect the appearance of the stem. A crack should appear in the stem base, as already stated above. It should not be difficult to pluck it from the vine. The melon should be easily skipped off the vine where the crack occurred.
To pick it, you should gently press on the stem. If it slips off easily, the melon is ready to pick. In case it does not slip off the vine easily, then let it sit for another. The next day check it again; if it is ready, you will find no difficulty harvesting it.
- How to store Cantaloupe?
Once you have harvested the melons, it is time to store them. Well, you can’t eat them all in a day. Melons will be softening after harvesting, but they will not continue to sweeten off the vine. If you want to save them for later use in smoothies or drinks, etc. then freeze them. First, remove the seeds and rinds and then cut them into bite-sized pieces.
Store these bite-size pieces in an air-tight bag and put them in the freezer. These pieces can last up to 6 months. Cantaloupes can be stores uncut for 4-5 days.
Tips for how to grow Cantaloupe:
Do you love Cantaloupes? Well, I do. If you are planning to plant Cantaloupes in your garden, then you should read the instructions discussed above. Here are a few more tips that can help you with growing melons:
- Cantaloupes prefer a sunny location so choose the best location to plant them.
- There are several types of Cantaloupes available out there. You should choose the type suited to your needs.
- These melons prefer warm weather, so you should not plant them before the temperature has warmed in spring.
- Try your best to reduce the chances of pests and diseases.
- Once the fruit has formed, raise them off the ground.
- Cantaloupes love to climb, so grow them vertically.
- Inspect leaf undersides every day to make sure they are not getting any pest or disease.
- You should give melons plenty of room to grow.
- Do not overwater the melons when they are growing. If you give them too much water, the melons will not be sweet.
- About a weak before melons are ripe, stop watering them.
- Harvest the melons at the right time.
Planting Cantaloupe is not that difficult. All you have to do is to gather some information before planting it. If you want to prevent damages when picking melons, make sure you know when to tell Cantaloupe is ready to pick. Store them to eat or use them in drinks and soups. Once you harvest all the Cantaloupes you should remove the vines from your garden.