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How To Grow And Care For Cucamelon

 Common Name  Cucamelon, Mexican Miniature Watermelon, Mexican Sour Cucumber, Mexican Sour Gherkin, Mouse Melon, or Pepquinos
 Botanical Name  Melothria scabra
 Family  Cucurbitaceae
 Plant Type  Annuals, Perennials, Fruit, Vine, Tubers
 Mature Size  Vine: 1 ft. tall, up to 10 ft. wide Fruit: 1 in. tall
 Sun Exposure  Full
 Soil Type  Well-drained, Rich
 Soil pH  Acidic, 6.1 to 6.8
 Bloom Time  Spring, Summer
 Flower Color  Yellow
 Hardiness Zones  Zones 2-11
Native Area North America, Central America



Cucamelon Care

Cucamelon plants love warm weather, so summer in the South is an ideal environment for them. It’s best to plant them in the spring so they can germinate in plenty of time to enjoy the hot summer sun. You may want to grow them in pots to bring them indoors to keep warm when nighttime temperatures begin to drop. For daily care, cucamelon plants need full sun, regular watering, and well-drained soil to ensure they bear fruit. The cucamelon plant is a vine and will also need a trellis structure to climb as it grows. As a vine, it can spread and become invasive in areas when not correctly trained to climb a trellis or pruned.


Light

Cucamelons need at least six to eight hours of direct sunlight daily to bear fruit. In some areas, cucamelons can tolerate partial shade, especially in the afternoon in hot climates.


Soil

Cucamelons grow in similar soil conditions as most vegetables, which means amending it with organic matter. If your soil quality does not contain rich, fertile nutrients, add compost and a layer of mulch to help enrich the planting area. The soil should be well-drained, slightly acidic, and humus-rich. Maintaining a consistently warm soil temperature will also help cucamelons to grow. As vines, cucamelons have shallow roots. Provide a trellis for them to have space to grow.

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Gardening jobs in August: what to plant and tidy in your garden this month

The fruit garden 

It is time to cut down any raspberry canes that have already borne fruit this summer. Summer fruiting raspberries bear fruit on new growth, and so there is no purpose in keeping the old ones hanging around. Cut them down flush with the ground, and then select up to eight of the new canes that have been produced this summer, and tie them in, along horizontal wires, cutting the rest back to ground level. The chosen ones will bear fruit next summer. 

Houseplants 

Houseplants can suffer when you are away on holiday, particularly now, during the warmest month of the year. If you are going to be away for a few days then just give them a good watering before you go, but for any longer you should move them into one place together, ideally a cool, north facing room where they will not get too much direct sunlight. Make sure each has a saucer. Grouped like this they will help to create a moist microclimate and prevent excessive evaporation. If going for more than a week you could group them together in the bath and fill it with a couple of inches of cold water. 

Flowering shrubs 

This is the month that rhododendrons and camellias begin to form the flower buds that will bloom next spring, and if it happens to coincide with a dry spell, fewer will be formed and you will have a less impressive spring display. It is worth watering them well even if there has been rain, and whether they are growing in pots or in the ground (though it is even more important in pots) as their dense growth can stop rain from easily reaching the roots. 

Herbs 

Take ‘semi-ripe’ cuttings of woody herbs such as rosemary, thyme,

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