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How to Plant Sugar Baby Watermelon Seeds

How to Plant Sugar Baby Watermelon Seeds

Jeena Lugo Jeena Lugo
5 minute read

Hello fellow gardeners! As a passionate gardener, I absolutely adore growing various fruits and vegetables in my garden. One of my all-time favorites is the sugar baby watermelon. These small icebox watermelons are delicious and small enough to fit in your refrigerator. In this in-depth article, I will provide a step-by-step guide on how to plant sugar baby watermelon seeds and ensure a bountiful harvest. Let's get started!

1. Choosing Sugar Baby Watermelon Seeds

When selecting your seeds, choosing high-quality, heirloom seeds is essential. I highly recommend purchasing your sugar baby watermelon seeds from a reputable source like Gardeners Basics. Their seed packets contain non-GMO, heirloom seeds with a high germination rate.

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2. Preparing the Soil

Proper soil preparation is crucial for growing sugar baby watermelons. Before planting, ensure the soil temperature is consistently above 70°F (21°C). Here are a few tips for preparing the soil:

  • Choose a location with total sun exposure
  • Make sure the ground is well-draining
  • Amend the soil with organic matter, such as compost or well-aged manure
  • Test the soil pH; watermelons prefer a slightly acidic to neutral pH of 6.0 to 7.0

3. Starting Seeds Indoors

If you have a short growing season or want a head start, show your sugar-baby watermelon seeds indoors. Here's how:

  • Fill seed trays or small pots with high-quality potting soil
  • Plant seeds 1 inch deep, following the recommended spacing on the seed packet
  • Keep the soil moist but not waterlogged
  • Provide a consistent temperature of 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Transplant seedlings outdoors once they have at least two sets of true leaves and the risk of frost has passed

4. Direct Sowing Sugar Baby Watermelon Seeds

You can plant your sugar baby watermelon seeds directly in the garden for those with a longer growing season. Follow these steps:

  • Create mounds of soil spaced approximately 3 feet apart
  • Plant 3 to 4 roots per mound, about 1 inch deep
  • Once seedlings emerge, thin to the most potent plant per mound
  • Keep the soil moist, especially during germination

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Sugar Baby Watermelon Seeds


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5. Caring for Your Watermelon Plants

Proper care is essential for successful watermelon growth. Follow these guidelines to ensure healthy, thriving plants:

  • Water deeply and consistently, aiming for 1 to 2 inches of water per week
  • Apply a balanced fertilizer, following package instructions
  • Mulch around plants to retain moisture and suppress weeds
  • Prune plants as needed to encourage healthy growth and air circulation

6. Companion Planting for Sugar Baby Watermelons

Companion planting can benefit watermelon plants, as it helps to repel pests and improve soil health. Some good companions for sugar baby watermelons include:

  • Nasturtiums, which help repel aphids and squash bugs
  • Marigolds, which deter nematodes and other pests
  • Corn, which provides shade and support for the vines
  • Beans, which fix nitrogen in the soil and improve fertility

Avoid planting watermelons near potatoes, as they can encourage the growth of harmful pests and diseases.

7. Trellising Sugar Baby Watermelons

If you have limited garden space or want to improve air circulation around your plants, you can grow sugar baby watermelons on a trellis. When growing watermelons vertically:

  • Choose a sturdy frame that can support the weight of the fruit
  • Train the vines to grow up the frame, gently guiding them and securing them with soft ties as needed
  • Use a sling or netting to support the weight of the developing fruit, attaching it securely to the trellis

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8. Fertilization Tips for Watermelon Plants

To promote healthy growth and abundant fruit production, providing your watermelon plants with the proper nutrients is important. Here are some fertilization tips:

  • Start with a balanced, all-purpose fertilizer when transplanting seedlings or after thinning direct-sown plants
  • Once the vines begin to run and set fruit, switch to a fertilizer higher in phosphorus and potassium, such as a 5-10-10 or 8-16-16 blend
  • Avoid over-fertilizing with nitrogen, as this can encourage excessive vine growth at the expense of fruit production

9. Identifying and Managing Pests and Diseases

Watch for common pests and diseases, such as cucumber beetles, aphids, and powdery mildew. Implement the following strategies to manage these issues:

  • Inspect plants regularly for signs of pests and diseases
  • Employ organic control methods, such as neem oil, insecticidal soap, or beneficial insects
  • Rotate crops to prevent the buildup of pests and conditions in the soil

10. Determining When Your Melon is Ripe

One of the most challenging aspects of growing sugar baby watermelons is determining when they're ripe. Here are some indicators that your melon is ready to harvest:

  • The color of the melon changes from a bright, shiny green to a dark green, matte finish
  • The curly tendril closest to the fruit has turned brown and dried up
  • The spot where the melon rests on the ground changes from a light green or white to a creamy, yellowish color
  • The melon emits a deep, hollow sound when you tap it gently

Remember that sugar baby watermelons typically reach maturity 75 to 80 days after planting.

11. Harvesting and Storing Your Sugar Baby Watermelons

Once your watermelons are ripe, it's time to harvest and enjoy them. Here's how to properly gather and store your watermelons:

  • Use a sharp knife or pruning shears to cut the melon from the vine, leaving a small portion of the stem attached to prevent rot
  • Gently wipe the melon clean with a damp cloth, removing any dirt or debris
  • Store uncut watermelons in a cool, dark place, such as a basement or pantry, for up to two weeks
  • Refrigerate cut watermelon in an airtight container for up to five days

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In Conclusion

Growing sugar baby watermelons is a rewarding and enjoyable gardening experience. You can produce a bountiful harvest of these sweet, delicious fruits with the proper care and attention. By following the step-by-step guide outlined in this article and selecting high-quality heirloom seeds from a trusted source like Gardeners Basics, you'll be well on your way to enjoying your homegrown sugar baby watermelons. Happy gardening!

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