MELON

Can be grown in a frame if in good sun, given free air and planted in a rich compost of loam, sand and leaf mould in good firm texture, and brought to a fine tilth. If conditions are favourable, melons may be cut four months after sowing. Sow seed, one in a pot, in winter, plunge in a box of manure for warmth to start germination and when roots established set in 5-in. pots and later give a top-dressing; when 1 ft. high plant in the frame soil. Their habit is like the vegetable marrow and the same general treatment for fertilising the female flowers, which have swellings that are the incipient melons, must be given. Remove surplus shoots, add compost if roots show through. Give plenty of water. Greenhouse culture is much the same, training them up strong wires or canes by the glass. They can also be grown in the open, after starting in a frame, if put on a rotted turf pile or an old hotbed. Good varieties include Best of All, Dutch Net, Hero of Lockinge, No Name and Superlative. Do not be afraid to stop shoots, as this lessens the number of male flowers.

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