The Art of Harvesting Watermelons

A couple years ago, a student asked if we could grow watermelons in the garden.  Always looking to experiment with new veggies and fruits in the garden, we decided to give it a try!  Since then, we have never tasted watermelon so mouth-watering delicious!  If you haven't had an organic watermelon grown locally, you haven't truly tasted a watermelon... in our humble opinion.

Watermelons do take a bit of work to grow,
especially in northern Vermont.  You need rich soil, you need warm conditions.  On top of all the hard work that goes into growing it, it's even trickier to determine the exact right time to harvest it.  There are four methods to use to help determine if it is time to harvest or not: (1) when the tendril nearest the fruit has turned brown and dry, (2) if the ground spot has turned from white to yellow, (3) when the blossom end of the fruit has become soft, or (4) if you knock on the fruit and it sounds "hollow." 

We'll tell you right now that the knocking method is quite difficult to follow, what does a "hollow" knock on a watermelon sound like any way?  What we have had the best luck with is utilizing the brown tendril method.  Two Fridays ago, we tested our first sugar baby watermelon of the season (its tendril was perfectly dry and brown).  It was a deep pink inside, perfectly sweet and juicy.  We are still waiting on the others to follow.  Hopefully within the next couple of weeks we'll lots of watermelon at the Farm Stand!

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