Watermelon 'Blacktail Mountain'
One of the earliest ripening watermelons in existence and bred specifically for the cold by Glenn Drowns in Northern Iowa, USA, this popular variety actually grows well in most climates and is ideal for those wanting to try growing watermelons at home.
Melons (both watermelons and rockmelons) need to be sown in warm soil and germinate between 18-22 deg C. Like pumpkins, they are best sown on mounds, 1m apart. Sow 3 or 4 seeds where you want one plant to grow, and remove the weaker plants once seed germinates. A sandy, well drained soil of pH 6 is ideal. While the vines are growing, they need plenty of water and nutrients, so good soil preparation is essential; however, once the fruit has set, too much water can lead to watery tasteless fruit. For large, lush melons, allow a maximum of 3 fruits per vine before pinching out the ends of the vines and allowing these fruit to develop.