Cultivation of Watermelon

Hello
We are going for watermelon (Syngenta Sugar Queen) variety in 2.5 acre land with drip and plastic mulching sheet.
If anyone has experience in growing the same variety in their land please share the various things to look out for during the crop cycle. From what I have heard farmers stories, its a very delicate crop, but returns are better than any other.
I would like to know

  1. Fertilizer schedule
  2. Pesticide and insecticide schedule
  3. Harvest time and yield
    and anything else that you would like to share.

Please let me know.

Thanks
Nikhil

Nikhil,

Here is quick reference for watermelon
srinidhifarm.com/tips_watermelon.php

Brother, think of experimenting moulded watermelons. In China and Japan you will get square watermelons.

Biggest threat you have to adress is to avoid from getting stolen.

Good reference, I am planning some watermelon myself.

Check this picture how to prepare square watermelons. Again it is not natural, just for curiosity sake we can make few of them.

The original purpose of the square melons seems to be easy fitting in the fridge, apart from the fancy value. In fact, I noticed there are Japanese sites that sell watermelons in fancy shapes now - hearts, human faces, cylinders etc., at huge fancy prices.

I also considered trying the squares, but I am first battling the basics - I will keep you posted.

On the topic, does anyone know how well the icebox hybrids perform?

Wow, humans really dont know where to stop. Growing watermelon itself is difficult, now they are changing the shapes to suit personal needs :slight_smile:.

Let me give it a shot on a couple of fruits once they reach that stage, in the meantime, the journey to that stage passes through tough obstacles. Please share experiences.

Thanks
Nikhil

Hello Nikhil -

There should be plenty of literature available around basics of watermelon cultivation. We have one season of Watermelon (another hybrid similar to Syngenta) under our belt. We have shared some information on our blog - saverafarms.com.

Our harvest was as expected, not anything to write home about but quite healthy. With that said, our challenges were in the post-harvest processing and marketing. At the conclusion we tried and were able to sell most in the local retail market - something I would not recommend to everyone. I am not sure of your background (agri or otherwise) but securing a go-to market strategy is most vital. A big issue facing our agri-prenuers today is not as much of cultivation but profitable marketing arrangements.

Farmgate sales will most likely produce disappointing profits. Agents / brokers will exploit your position of weakness once the produce is ripe. Ensure you have an end customer, preferably a volume consumer, lined up before you break ground for your crop.

I do not want to be a kill-joy but you want to reap what you sow and sell what you reap! 
Good luck and keep us posted of your progress.

  • Savera Farms

Thanks for replies.

Ok, specific questions as general experiences are hard to come by.

  1. When should I use Calcium Nitrate, spray or fertigation and dosage?
  2. Should I use Boron as precaution, spray or fertigation and dosage?
  3. Is general micronutrient required, spray or fertigation and dosage?

Lets take it from here. Please reply.

Thanks
Nikhil

Though this is not natural, it makes business sense as it takes less space and easy to transport and it cant roll over too, typical Japanese, Bonsoi and now this. 

This is one of the classic example given for innovation ( though minor) in software industry to let people think about simple but effective innovation.

From my little knowledge and research, I am going with the below. I have gotten some poultry manure ploughed in.

  1. Basal P at ploughing as Single Super Phosphate (has Ca and S too), part K.
  2. N and rest of K will be through fertigation. Fertigation is supposed to be hugely superior in fertilizer use efficiency whereever possible. However P and Ca, I believe clog the drip. For N and K, Urea and MOP are quite soluble and are the cheapest sources.
  3. Boron is recommended as foliar spray to increase female flowers and reduce cracking. Soil application of micronutrients is the best way and has effect over several years but needs larger quantities. Foliar spray is a quick fix; fertigation does not seem to be the best for micronutrients though. Utmost caution is needed not to overapply micronutrients - ideally apply after a soil test - I am applying half doses to the soil.

Chandra, Have you tried water melon in your farm, and did any one attempt shape, how did it work out, was the properties (growth, taste, color) normal or under rated yield.

For all Fancy Watermelon lovers
anybody tried yet?
i saw in some japanese channel that these fancy watermelon had no good market
reasons being
ripening of the fruit was not uniform making it unpalatable

youtube.com/watch?v=2JNSpMhJLvg