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Author Topic: Top Watermelon Varieties  (Read 6806 times)

mikesid

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Top Watermelon Varieties
« on: April 12, 2013, 05:50:51 PM »
I'm growing quite a few different varieties (first time) and wanted to see what your top variety was...I have only had a couple including Sugar Baby and Moons and Stars...I have read the yellow variety is pretty tasty...I am growing an orange variety called Orange Tendersweet and some others like Charleston Grey and Carolina Cross...I also tried another melon recently call Piel de Sapo..very good! though not a watermelon..still a melon...and I saved all the seeds so I can plant me some!

Tropicdude

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2013, 05:56:05 PM »
Have you tried Ali baba? I heard its really good variety for flavor and a survivor compared to most other variety when confronted with drought like conditions.
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natsgarden123

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2013, 06:17:43 PM »
Do you have photos? I really wanted to try my hand at watermelon, the seeded kind. The supermarket watermelons here are horrible.

So you grow then on the ground? on a mound?

A coincidence-my brother, who is a watermelon fiend, bought excellent seeded fruit last summer in his market. It was labeled as Florida Grown- you know where he lives?   Upstate NY!

I asked the Publix produce guy about getting better melons and he said Publix won't get any.

mikesid

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2013, 07:58:54 PM »
I'm at the fire station today so can't upload any pics...I have planted the Orange Tenderswweet in a raised bed and the rest I planted on mounds...I didn't vertically trellis them though it probably would have been beneficial given my lack of space..I also planted seeds in various parts of the yard and also in the mulch mounds surrounding my fruit trees...just trying to use as much space as possible and figured I could use the space around my trees since they are still fairly small, new plantings...this season is just a trial to find out where they grow the best and under what conditions...

Bob407

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2013, 08:03:46 PM »
Here is a pic of Moon & Stars I grew last year. I liked it and am growing it  again along with "Congo". My largest m&s was over 23 lbs, I have read they can get up to 40 lb.

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mikesid

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2013, 08:06:11 PM »
Here is a pic of Moon & Stars I grew last year. I liked it and am growing it  again along with "Congo". My largest m&s was over 23 lbs, I have read they can get up to 40 lb.



Looks great! Surprising such a little vine can produce such big fruit! How many fruits do you allow per vine?

Bob407

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2013, 08:53:45 PM »
Last year I planted several seeds around the base of my lychee tree, that way I watered the tree and the vines in one shot. I really couldnt tell you how many there were per vine because by the time the vines intermingle there is no easy way to know. I just let the vines do there thing and keep them watered. This year I have them planted around the base of the avocado, papayas, and oranges.
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fruitlovers

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2013, 01:52:30 AM »
I used to grow watermelons for sale, organic ofcourse! My favorites were:
1) Orangeglow
2) Moon and Stars
3) Black Diamond (really just non variegated ancestor of  Moon and Stars)
4) Charleston Grey

You can't really trellis watermelons, except maybe for baby (icebox) types, as they are way too heavy to hold on the trellis. Most watermelons need to be grown on the ground.
Oscar

TnTrobbie

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #8 on: April 13, 2013, 12:25:32 PM »
I'm surprised that the leaf cutter type of ants don't annihilate them. I used to unintentionally grow em (market type) in Trinidad and they'd get volley ball size until the ants destroy them. Leaves and all. Even chives / green onions were not immune. Mabye it varies by region.
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fruitlovers

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #9 on: April 13, 2013, 06:07:07 PM »
I'm surprised that the leaf cutter type of ants don't annihilate them. I used to unintentionally grow em (market type) in Trinidad and they'd get volley ball size until the ants destroy them. Leaves and all. Even chives / green onions were not immune. Mabye it varies by region.

Are there leaf cutter ants in the USA? I've never seen them....fortunately.
Oscar

Greenhaven

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2013, 04:02:33 AM »
I've seen the "moon & stars" variety in several heirloom catalogues and thought they looked  pretty cool, but 'til now have not known anyone who grew it so wasn't sure if it was any good.
Here is a pic of Moon & Stars I grew last year. I liked it and am growing it  again along with "Congo". My largest m&s was over 23 lbs, I have read they can get up to 40 lb.



 
So they do taste good?   I had Champagne last year, pretty little melons, ordinary taste.

Bob407

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2013, 04:12:58 AM »
Greenhaven,
You might find this funny, but I don't eat the melons. I grow them and give them away to neighbors, friends, etc. They seem to enjoy them though. :P

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Greenhaven

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #12 on: April 14, 2013, 04:19:25 AM »
I guess half the fun is the growing, but you're very generous Bob407, a great atitude in today's world.  :)   I'm sure your neighbours and friends love you for it. ;) 

Bob407

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2013, 04:39:34 AM »
I also wanted to clarify, in my post further up the board I mention that "I liked it" I am referring to the appearance of the melon and the vines. Eye candy is tasty too!
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selkirk

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2013, 10:23:08 PM »


Are there leaf cutter ants in the USA? I've never seen them....fortunately.
[/quote]

USA leaf cutter-Big yes on that, I have them at my place in Matagorda Texas. And you are right-you do not want them. Overnight they can and will strip a tree.

gunnar429

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #15 on: March 09, 2015, 12:55:10 PM »
Anyone in FL growing watermelon this summer?  Thinking about planting some out, but not sure which type to get.
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LivingParadise

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #16 on: March 09, 2015, 02:22:38 PM »
Anyone in FL growing watermelon this summer?  Thinking about planting some out, but not sure which type to get.

It was my experience that the summer here was too hot for them. I grew some indoors last year, along with honeydew and cantaloupe. All flowered, but I got tired of pollinating all the flowers myself so after I got one successful pollination, I moved everything outdoors to let the insects do it. The sun was way too harsh, so I ended up moving them to full shade. But the heat was still too much for them, so they withered enough to succumb to an outbreak of spider mites I had. It was very sad, my one little melon was growing well at that point. I now think that winter into Spring would be a better time. I did not try it this year however due to being busy with other things. I might try again in the next few weeks in the shade, although it is already warming up here.

Anyone who has found successful cultivars for the SFL heat though, I would be happy to hear about! Maybe it is just my experience, but it is not really a tropical fruit. Our winter conditions are a lot closer to summer conditions up North.

ClayMango

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #17 on: March 09, 2015, 02:35:06 PM »
Trying my hand at Watermelon this year, because even the markets carry decent Sugar babies which are very sweet and such a refreshing snack in the summer after you've been weeding, mulching, digging in the yard!!!

I did a little research on top tier varieties a few months ago and purchased several from the Top 5 placed varieties from a university testing. I purchased them all from this Rare seed sight inclduing their touted  Ali Baba which is apparently the sweetest of them all according to them. http://www.rareseeds.com/store/vegetables/watermelon/

Seeds I ordered


1. Ali Baba- red flesh type
2.Orangelo- Orange Flesh type
3. moons and stars- yellow flesh type with yellow blotches on exterior
4. Sweet Siberion
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simon_grow

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #18 on: March 09, 2015, 04:02:01 PM »
I tried about 6 varieties last year and here are a couple I recommend:

Hime Kansen
Hokkaido Black
Orangeglo

Alibaba was not particularly good and my grafted plants did better in terms of disease resistance than compared to my no grafted plants. Grafting the plants takes a lot of time and planning so I would not recommend it for a beginner. You can easily purchase grafted plants online from the company that sells grafted tomatoes. I think the companies name is mightymato or something like that.

If I were to recommend just one variety, I would go with Hime Kansen. Small melons but super sweet with crisp texture and thin rind. Absolutely delicious!
Simon

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #19 on: March 09, 2015, 04:22:27 PM »
Trying my hand at Watermelon this year, because even the markets carry decent Sugar babies which are very sweet and such a refreshing snack in the summer after you've been weeding, mulching, digging in the yard!!!

I did a little research on top tier varieties a few months ago and purchased several from the Top 5 placed varieties from a university testing. I purchased them all from this Rare seed sight inclduing their touted  Ali Baba which is apparently the sweetest of them all according to them. http://www.rareseeds.com/store/vegetables/watermelon/

Seeds I ordered


1. Ali Baba- red flesh type
2.Orangelo- Orange Flesh type
3. moons and stars- yellow flesh type with yellow blotches on exterior
4. Sweet Siberion


What a coincidence - i'm trying watermelons for the first time this summer and also ordered Orangeglo and Ali Baba from rareseeds.com!

I have eaten an Ali Baba (supposedly) before but don't recall it being that spectacular. We usually get Sugar Baby (supposedly) from the farmer's market and they are usually very good. I have high hopes for the Orangeglo.
I also got an orange honeydew - honeydew may be my favorite melon.

ClayMango

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #20 on: March 09, 2015, 05:38:00 PM »
Sweet Siberian was ranked 1st place at the University of Ca last tasting done which helped influence my purchases, Moons and Stars, and Orangelo placed 3rd and 4th i think.

https://www.mastergardeners.org/projects/ninepalms/2006/watermelon.html


Hmm bad feedback on the Forum regarding Ali Baba....maybe the reviews from the  Rare seeds comapany is just self promotion of their product? Hopefully it will live up to its hype and maybe everyone here had a  bad melon .
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ccamp

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #21 on: March 09, 2015, 06:04:59 PM »
I'm doing Sugar Baby this year - IME it has produced well for me in the spring and summer,  tastes very good, and can be trellised which is important for me since I am lacking in space.

ClayMango

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #22 on: March 09, 2015, 06:09:54 PM »
Guys I'll be doing a humanitarian deployment starting in may and won't be back until Sept.... Is there anyway to have my Wife start these varieties much later towards the end of Spring/Early summer so I can enjoy some watermelon when i get back.... this sucks so bad...missing out on my Peaches again as well!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! duty calls....
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fruitlovers

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #23 on: March 09, 2015, 06:31:21 PM »
Sweet Siberian was ranked 1st place at the University of Ca last tasting done which helped influence my purchases, Moons and Stars, and Orangelo placed 3rd and 4th i think.

https://www.mastergardeners.org/projects/ninepalms/2006/watermelon.html


Hmm bad feedback on the Forum regarding Ali Baba....maybe the reviews from the  Rare seeds comapany is just self promotion of their product? Hopefully it will live up to its hype and maybe everyone here had a  bad melon .

I used to grow watermelons for market, and Moon and Stars was my #1 variety i grew. Orangeglo was #2. Both of these are excellent quality. I also grew Black Diamond, which i think is just the non variegated version of Moon and Stars. Tastes the same, but doesn't have the variegation, so is a bit more vigorous and productive. I also liked and grew Charleston Grey.
I don't think S. Florida is too hot to grow watermelons. They thrive in areas with high heat. They just need a lot of water and like sandy soil. Main limiting factors for growing watermelons is disease. If your area has diseases in the soil that may really limit the varieties you can grow. If this is the case look for varieties that are disease, especially wilt, resistant. Here main problem is: fruit fly. They will sting the fruits when very small.
Oscar

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #24 on: March 09, 2015, 06:32:17 PM »
I am going with Desert Yellow.  Haven't found a better tasting one yet.

mangomanic12

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #25 on: March 09, 2015, 06:40:29 PM »
Hey, we must all be on the same wavelength /  brotherhood here  - i just planted 5 starts last week also only ( Crisp sweet - i believe is the name) . I really like watermelons and gave it a try.

There is a great video on youtube by a Australian or Brit guy that shows how to grow them ingeniously on a trellis system. when the fruit gets heavy he just places bamboo sticks across Pyramid shaped trellis for support. I am going to try this. This prevents little bugs or ants etc from eating / chewing the small fruit . Check it out ! It's only a minute and a half video. Claymango and others - Thanks for the info on where to order some seeds etc.

Mike - in the desert

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #26 on: March 09, 2015, 10:08:06 PM »
I'm interested growing my own watermelons, mainly orange/yellow flesh. Clay, how reliable is rareseeds.com? or anybody know about this site? i want true seed types, i don't want it to turn out to be something else if i planted a orangeglo lol. Thanks and lets grow some watermelons for this summer.

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #27 on: March 09, 2015, 10:24:11 PM »
I'm interested growing my own watermelons, mainly orange/yellow flesh. Clay, how reliable is rareseeds.com? or anybody know about this site? i want true seed types, i don't want it to turn out to be something else if i planted a orangeglo lol. Thanks and lets grow some watermelons for this summer.

I believe the site is highly regarded and reliable (mostly.....I was just perusing beans and noticed multiple reviewers howling that one advertised as a bush was anything but....)
But I have yet to plant anything.

ClayMango

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #28 on: March 09, 2015, 10:25:55 PM »
I'm interested growing my own watermelons, mainly orange/yellow flesh. Clay, how reliable is rareseeds.com? or anybody know about this site? i want true seed types, i don't want it to turn out to be something else if i planted a orangeglo lol. Thanks and lets grow some watermelons for this summer.

I just got the seeds, well the seed packets look legit lol, they appear to be professional based on their reviews...i also think they have the largest selection of melons period in the US....very large scale company here.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2015, 10:27:33 PM by ClayMango »
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fruitlovers

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #29 on: March 09, 2015, 10:43:07 PM »
I originally got my Orangeglo seeds from Willwhite. They specialize in watermelon seeds and have been in bizz for very long time:
http://www.willhiteseed.com/
Oh, just checked them out and it seems they don't carry Orangeglow any more, but they have a few other good ones. (Seems they had lots more open pollinated types in the olde days.)
Oscar

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #30 on: March 10, 2015, 01:33:44 AM »
Anybody growing Moon and Stars.  It's an old hairloom variety. ;D
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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #31 on: March 10, 2015, 05:15:35 AM »
Anybody growing Moon and Stars.  It's an old hairloom variety. ;D

The orange fleshed large moon and stars is the best watermelon I've tried.

Bob407

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #32 on: March 10, 2015, 11:19:02 AM »
Anybody growing Moon and Stars.  It's an old hairloom variety. ;D



Haa! I love it! :D
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ClayMango

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #33 on: March 10, 2015, 11:53:32 AM »
Is it me, or is Watermelon a really refreshing snack, feels like an all natural tasty and hydrating treat in the summer, The flavor isnt explosive as say a Mango, but it doesnt need to be...I never really liked this fruit that much until my wife started bringing me these cold tasty snacks while doing yard work in the Summer....In the Desert Heat, this fruit becomes God Tier.
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simon_grow

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #34 on: March 10, 2015, 02:08:55 PM »
Is it me, or is Watermelon a really refreshing snack, feels like an all natural tasty and hydrating treat in the summer, The flavor isnt explosive as say a Mango, but it doesnt need to be...I never really liked this fruit that much until my wife started bringing me these cold tasty snacks while doing yard work in the Summer....In the Desert Heat, this fruit becomes God Tier.

Same goes for a good Dragonfruit, super refreshing after a hot day.

Simon

ClayMango

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #35 on: March 10, 2015, 02:47:54 PM »
Is it me, or is Watermelon a really refreshing snack, feels like an all natural tasty and hydrating treat in the summer, The flavor isnt explosive as say a Mango, but it doesnt need to be...I never really liked this fruit that much until my wife started bringing me these cold tasty snacks while doing yard work in the Summer....In the Desert Heat, this fruit becomes God Tier.

Same goes for a good Dragonfruit, super refreshing after a hot day.

Simon


Good point Simon...especially. A chilled Dragon Fruit!!
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fruitlovers

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Re: Top Watermelon Varieties
« Reply #36 on: March 10, 2015, 05:20:28 PM »
Is it me, or is Watermelon a really refreshing snack, feels like an all natural tasty and hydrating treat in the summer, The flavor isnt explosive as say a Mango, but it doesnt need to be...I never really liked this fruit that much until my wife started bringing me these cold tasty snacks while doing yard work in the Summer....In the Desert Heat, this fruit becomes God Tier.

Not just you. Watermelon is on my top 10 favorite fruits list always. Most Americans haven't tasted a good watermelon because most supermarket fruits are very low quality. There is a tendency to select for small seeded, or seedless, and the quality of those is really usually quite bad. You won't find Moon and Stars, Orangeglow, Black Diamond, in any supermarket. I'd walk a mile for a good watermelon. Can't say that about most fruits.
Oscar

 

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