Any advice for growing watermelons?

I'm new to gardening, and after a fairly successful first attempt, im expanding and experimenting this year. I have an area i have set aside to try my hand at growing watermelons this year. Does anyone have any advice? Common mistakes to watch out for? Any halp is greatly appreciated.
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Zimmy wrote:

Live somewhere warm. ;-)
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Thinks LOTS. Lots of compost or rotted manure. Recommended amount of veggie fertilizer and lots and lots of sun and lots and lots of water. ;-)
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On Sat, 05 May 2007 13:39:52 -0500, Manelli Family wrote:

And lots of space!
sf
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Depends on where you live. It takes 110 days from day of planting for the watermelon to mature. And they like hot weather.
--
Susan N.

"Moral indignation is in most cases two percent moral,
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Grow them out of sight of any neighborhood teenage boys ;)
Andrew
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Lots of space. Plant 5-7 seeds in a hill...thin to 3 Side dress ferts when vines start to run. Spray fungicide to control powdery mildew.
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Interpret "Lots" to mean "Vast amounts" and not just a little area. By the end of the season, I'm usually moving watermelon vines anywhere there's room. They race to the edges of the garden, tiptoe through the tomatoes, and cover the ground.
*snip*
Puckdropper
--
Wise is the man who attempts to answer his question before asking it.

To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
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As I'm doing melons this year for the first time myself, I also appreciate the answers. I only planted 1 of each(cantaloupe/honeydew/watermelon) because I know I'll get enough from those. I always start them indoors a few weeks before the weather is decent enough to plant them outside, so they're A: going to have enough warm outside weather to finish growing since only have like 2 or 3 months of a growing season here, and B: they're established/'strong' enough to handle the transplant. I tried to do this last year, but when it was time to transplant, I put one of the pots on the porch/patio ledge and went inside to get the others and a chicken pecked the stalk/stem clean in half. I was so upset...anyways, hope your plants thrive Zimmy!
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I got a good chicken recipe:-) - Bill Coloribus gustibus non disputatum (mostly)
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haha well if my mother wouldn't have a fit, and we didn't have mostly small banty hens which you'd need at least 2 of to get enough meat, I'd take you up on that...
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I'm no expert, but I'd suggest planting a small melon variety. They would reach maturity faster than the full-sized monsters, and by growing 4 or 5 small ones instead of one monster, you'd not be putting all your eggs in one basket, so to speak. Protect from goats, sheep, rats, and hail storms. The seedless melons have gained popularity here, for a number of reasons. The flesh is firmer, and the cut melon keeps perfectly for a longer period than does a melon with seeds.
--
John Savage (my news address is not valid for email)

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Thanks to everyone for the helpful advice. I hope i didn't jump the gun and plant too early. its nice and warm during the day, but its still a little chilly overnight. I planted 3 different types of watermelon: one is supposed to grow fruits up to 14 lbs, one is supposed to grow fruits 20 to 25 lbs, and the others were seeds my mother-in-law saved from watermelons she cut up for my kids last summer. (the kids planted some of the seeds in pots on the window sill and they sprouted, so we'll see what they do in the garden.) thanks again
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