Possibly from Japan originally, this early-producing cantaloupe was developed by a Japanese melon grower in California in the 1910s and was popularized and released to the seed market by I.D. Hale in 1923, hence the name. This heat-loving melon has quickly gained in popularity and is a parent to many modern hybrids. The oval fruits have thick salmon-coloured flesh with a very sweet flavour and grow to about 6-7’’ in diameter. One of the most popular open-pollinated melons for good reasons!
- Latin Name: Cucumis melo
- Life Cycle: Annual
- Days to Maturity: 80-90
- Planting Depth: 1 cm
- Plant Spacing: 60-90 cm or 30 cm with trellis
- Row Spacing: 1-1.5 m
- Growth Habit: Vine
Melons are a classic long season summer crop that thrive with plenty of water, heat and sun. Cantaloupes and honeydew are two different types of muskmelon. Cantaloupe is easily recognized by the coarse tan netting of the rind and is defined by a sweet, orange flesh. Honeydew typically have smooth skin and a mellow green interior.
Start seeds indoors 4-6 weeks before the last spring frost. Keep seeds warm, moist and well lit. Don’t rush to get transplants into the garden, wait until soil temperatures exceed 16°C. At this temperature, seeds can be sown directly. Plant seeds at 3 cm deep and 45 cm apart.
Melons need plenty of light to produce their sweet fruits, so use a space that receives full sun. The soil should be well-drained. Melons can also be planted in mounds or hilled rows to improve drainage.
Plenty of water is important during the vegetative and fruiting phases. They should receive 3-5 cm of water weekly. Once fruits are well established, withhold the heavy watering. The dryness and heat will force the sweetest fruit. Make an effort to water early in the day and keep foliage as dry as possible. Spread mulch away from the base of the plant in order to retain moisture and provide a dry bed for the heavy fruits.
Be good to your pollinators! Male and female flowers are produced and need healthy native insects to aid in fertilization. Once melons are growing, flowers can be thinned from the vines to concentrate size and quality to a few fruits.
Approaching harvest time, pay close attention to the colour of the skin and the condition of the stem. Melons are probably ripe when skin changes from green to tan or the stem is dry/cracked near the fruit.
- The cantaloupe is technically a type of muskmelon that is thought to have first originated somewhere between Africa and Asia. It was among the first plants to ever be domesticated and cultivated.
- Cantaloupes are a delicious, heat-loving melon with a relatively long growing season, making them especially well-suited for hot summer climates.
- Cantaloupe seeds will remain viable for 4 years if stored in a cool, dark place, ideally between 4 and 10⁰C. After that, the germination rate may start to go down.
OUR SEED GUARANTEE
You know that a lush, fruitful garden needs good soil, frequent watering, and sunlight to grow, but it’s the seeds that really make the harvest.
Picked and bagged for 2023 the vast majority of our seeds have germination rates of over 85%. The seeds are all-natural, non-GMO, non-hybrid, untreated, and open-pollinated for seed saving.
We have put a lot of thoughts into the design and packaging of our seed packets. Our seeds are all carefully packed in food grade kraft paper/aluminium zipper lock bags, and then are shipped in eco-friendly padded mailers.
We heat-seal each of our seed packet for even more protection from moisture, odour and light, allowing you to store your seeds for up to 3x longer than paper or plastic. Plant them all, germinate some indoors, save some for next season - it’s up to you!