Growing Watermelon in Containers

Nothing can define summer better than piled up watermelons on the roadside. I still remember my schooldays, the way we used to buy slices of watermelon and eat them dripping the juice all over. I still love the watermelon for being such a nice fruit to eat and to grow!

Watermelon contains about 6% sugar and 92% water by weight. It is a good source of Vitamin C. Surprisingly, It seems that the white part of the flesh is highly nutritious but we all avoid them. 

Usually the ones that you see on the road sides weigh about 8-10 kg and are very huge in size too. For growing in our garden in containers, we don’t grow such varieties as their nutritional requirements is also quite high. So for this summer, I chose a variety called “Sugar Baby”. Its not too big in size. Its compact and suitable for our home needs (at least mine). It doesn’t have the traditional stripes. It is totally dark green.

I seed started them in small sized pots ( 6” dia) and they were transplanted into dustbin buckets and paint buckets after they showed 2-3 true leaves. The medium, as you can see is cocopeat.

11/3/2010

 MyGarden 1094

 

14/4/2010 -  You can see the vine is already exploring my terrace. Shade net was of support to the vine. My idea was to let it spread on the terrace floor so that I dont have to worry about supporting the melon. But the plant’s idea was something else. So I let it decide what works for it. It started climbing the net and flowering at 2-3 feet high.

MyGarden 1245

4/5/2010 – The unexpected happened! I told you not to climb there!. As the fruit started growing, the stem started bending and it was going to break anytime. I think this fruit likes to hangout..

MyGarden 1314

Anyway I was not ready to lose a fruit so I kept a pot to support the fruit.

 MyGarden 1344

Well this is not the only fruit, there are couple more..

MyGarden 1373 MyGarden 1374

These are still growing. Lets see how big they get.

Ciao

gg

Related posts:

  1. Growing Kohlrabi in Containers
  2. Growing capsicum in containers
  3. Growing Tomatoes in Growbags – Hydroponic way
  4. Pear tomatoes – or Garden candy?
  5. Growing Coriander in container

182 comments to Growing Watermelon in Containers

  • amit

    hi,
    i am highly impressed with ur work,would like to start a kitchen garden on my roof.i would be highly obliged if u could guide me about hydroponics,as there is not enough information about it on the web(with regards to india………..more specifically delhi)you are the only one whom i can look up to………..as i saw ur blog pages from jan2008……….u have started from scrach……so i look up to you for guidance……as i would also be starting from scrach.i live in delhi.my email id is amit16january@gmail.com.waiting for an early reply……..regards…
    amit

  • Watermelon in containers? wow! this is news to me!!
    Thanks for this informative post GG. where in Bangalore can i get these ‘sugar baby’ seeds?

    btw, the greenery i see in four pots, alongside the watermelon plant… are these beans?? just curious :)

    • geekgardener

      Hi GoodEarth,

      You are welcome. I got the seeds from IndoAmerican Seeds in KR road. You are right. The greenery you see is Beans. :)

      gg

  • quite inspiring!!!..i grew a tiny kitchen garden in my 7×5 balcony i hope i can try this sometime :)

  • Atul

    Great post! I will surely try this. Can these be grown in the rainy season?

  • Awesome! We tried to grow some seeds that sprouted from the seeds(of the normal variety) that were thrown around, but it died after sometime. Next time we will surely try the sugar baby. Usually it is allowed to grow on the ground so that you don’t need to support the fruits I guess. Couple of questions,

    1. What is the right time to grow water melons ?
    2. What about water/compost etc. any special needs for the plants ?

    • geekgardener

      Hi Jayadeep,

      Nice to hear from you. For home use, in bangalore, you can grow them almost anytime. Jun/July is apt to start many seeds. This hanging watermelon you saw is totally grown in soil+compost mix in the ratio 50-50 and I topped it with handful of bonemeal. Plenty of watering daily without fail :).

      gg

  • Yummm! Melons in summer! That’s the best. Looks great, GG! Happy Gardening!

  • Binita

    Hi gg,

    This melon looks delicious…fruit color is very nice…

    I have one balcony with no direct sunlight. Can i grow something there in small pots? I am not looking for any exotic vegetable variety..Any flowers , vegetables in small pots in shade…any suggestion??

    Regards,
    Binita

    • geekgardener

      Hi Binita,

      Thanks. You can grow many veggies that can tolerate partial shade. That includes mint, lettuce, spinach, turnip, knolkhol etc. Flowers, you can grow Hydrangea, Pansy/Viola, Begonia, Hosta etc.

      gg

      • Binita

        Thanks much for your reply. Whenever i see watermelon farms, I used to feel that these melons must have poped up from the soil directly [:)] … It is simply amazing to see them growing in a container. I have one question. You have described that plant is growing on the shadenet. What if you forcibly remove the plant from the net and put it on the floor. Will it hook up to the floor?

        • geekgardener

          Hi Binita,

          Thanks. You can cut the tendrils with which it clings to the support it gets and let it run on the floor. If its on the floor it will run around and you have watch every step you take in the garden.

          gg

  • Hi gg ,
    Recently i got ur blogs URl from one of my friend who is also follows you.
    I am having a small garden with variety of hibiscus , roses , bonsai and other plants.
    Now i am having plan for driping system for my garden. can you sugesst some furtilizers for my plats(i rearely use Urea and DHP).

    • geekgardener

      Sandip,

      For the above said plants, you can use a water soluble fertilizer like 19-19-19 about 3g/liter of water. They will respond to it very well.

  • Who doesn’t love watermelon? We just bought some one yesterday! Yummy!

    http://www.restaurantreviewers.wordpress.com

  • Hi gg, I used to grow tomatoes and beans in containers, but never tried watermelons. Thank you for sharing your watermelons and photographs. I really enjoyed your post!
    Jan

    • geekgardener

      jhsketch,

      Thanks for stopping by. Tomatoes and beans are veggies I always count on. They grow so well and make every minute’s effort worth it.
      You should try watermelon. Glad you enjoyed this post.

      Thanks
      gg

  • so it’s possible to plant it in pots then and i figured they would eventually cling to the net instead of creeping on the floor. good that you have placed pots to support them. are these the red ones or the yellow ones? i would love to grow one…particularly those yellow seedless watermelons.

    • geekgardener

      Hi Jen,

      Thanks for stopping by. These are the red ones. The cultivar name is Sugar baby. I am tempted to grow seedless watermelons too. The seeds are not easily available here in Bangalore.

      Geekgardener

  • David

    I like this! Having recently become single, I’ve just got to get started on my own little veggie plants. It’s probably just what I need. Thanks for the inspiration. – Dave in Fort Walton Beach, FL

    • geekgardener

      Hi David,

      Thanks for stopping by. I always go to my garden first thing in the morning and It brightens up my day. The reason I love my garden is that it keeps changing every day and its inspiring. Good luck with your veggie garden!

      geekgardener.

  • Catherine

    My mum once did this…. many years ago, but the watermelon didn’t grow like yours. Thank you for sharing the photos, I like it.

    • geekgardener

      Catherine,

      Thanks for visiting my blog. I was having my fingers crossed when I sowed the seeds. Glad you liked it.

      gg

  • Hi,
    I have worked on organic farms, I have worked in gardens yet these are the first photos I have ever seen of watermelon plants. It is great to open my mind to knew things.
    Thank you for sharing D from http://www.crazyparking.com in Nice

  • I grew some in a garden once and they were the best tasting watermelon I ever had. Didn’t think to try them in a container, I might do that.

  • I tried growing watermelons on a patio a few years ago. While I got very impressive vines, I didn’t get any melons. Eventually, it became too hot and I could not keep them watered well enough and my vines died. Part of my problem may have been too small of a container.

    • geekgardener

      The Gates of Lodore,

      Summer keeps us on our toes.Especially with growing plants in the terrace/roof top. Watering everyday was very very important during its growth. Sometimes twice a day. The container is 20L bucket.

      Happy gardening
      gg

  • This was very interesting. I grew some squash last year in a kid’s blue plastic swimming pool. It worked well but I didn’t think larger veggies would work in a pot but I see now that they just need room to climb out. I have a raised garden this year with way too many plants so I might try taking some out and doing the same thing. My beans this year are back in the plastic swimming pool because I ran out of space. I will try the netting so they can climb.

    Barbie

    • geekgardener

      Hi Barbie,

      Growing vegetables in the kids swimming pool is an excellent idea. It has enough room too. Larger fruiting vegetables grow well in pots as long as they are fertilized well. Good luck.

      gg

  • wow that is sooo amazing!!! It makes me want to grow something. I wonder if watermelon can grow in Singapore.

    • geekgardener

      Hi Bookjunkie,

      Thanks. From your blog, I read ‘its hot’ out there. You can and should grow watermelon :D..

      Happy gardening
      gg

  • Nice article. This blog can give anyone an idea to start a kitchen garden.

    But you did not put the dates for all the pics. Tell me – Roughly how long will it take to get a full grown watermelon.

    I saw your other blogs, great work – I must say. You make it so informative by posting the pics. By the way, where are you from?

  • Hi GG,
    Thats a great sight. Congrats! I want to grow melons in containers however have only tried muskmelons so far, it produced a couple but they were very small, I was not into soilless during those days.
    Have a few questions for you:

    1. Whats the best time to sow water melon seeds? I thought it is in Dec-Jan but you have got good results sowing them in Mar.
    2. Are all three from the same plants? how many a single plan can produce in containers?
    3. Do they have side shoots which needs to be pruned? from the snap it seems that only the single main stem is growing.
    4. whats the length of the creeper? can it be controlled by pinching the head growth? like sometime done with indeterminate tomatoes?
    5. Need for any special nutrient?

    Regards,
    -FG

    • geekgardener

      Hi Fg,

      Thank you. This plant is grown totally in soil+compost mix(+chicken manure). Also, I added bonemeal. Now I feel I should have used hydroponic nutes as well. May be the size would have increased.
      1) You are right. As per season, they sow in Dec-Jan so that we get melons by Feb/Mar. They need good sunlight and hot weather to grow. We can grow them year round too. Since it is for home use, a little reduction in yield is not going to impact so much.
      2) No the fruits are from Different plants. The last 2 pics are of little smaller size. Hopefully they grow larger. The plants produced 1-2 watermelons per plant. That too the 2nd one is little malnourished ;)
      3) I didn’t do any pruning/pollinating. There were 3-5 stems spreading in all directions. The picture contains only one.
      4) The length is around 4-5 feet/vine and there were 3-5 vines( long and short). I didnt pinch the tip but if done will help branching. It is a practice to leave only one fruit /vine to mature for a good fruit size.
      5) No nutrient added for watermelon.

      Happy gardening
      gg

      • Thanks for the answers gg,
        This length seems manageable for me, otherwise, I had grown cucumbers 2 yrs back in rainy season and it grew wild. though at that time I was not much experienced about fertilizers, and it was an effect of excess nitrogen – it produces only 2 cucumbers after covering my entire balcony :-)
        Without fertilizer is interesting, any specific reason for growing them in soil (+compost)?
        -FG

        • geekgardener

          Hi FG,

          I can relate to excess nitrogen problem. I had my tomato plants grow like monsters with tiny pea sized tomatoes once :).
          I knew you would ask this question. To be honest, I wanted to have an hydroponic setup and with that in mind I sowed the melon seeds. But due to my laziness+summer’s heat, I couldn’t set it up. Then I transplanted them into 20L buckets that had soil+compost prefilled. That seemed to be an easy task. I simply moved them out of the greenhouse so that they can run around freely.

          gg

          gg

  • What a cool idea! If I’m able I’ll give that a try this year.

  • Very impressive…..you could let the melons climb up an old ladder and use some netting (they suggest using panty hose here) to tie it to the ladder to ease the pressure

    • geekgardener

      Thanks Giri. I grow these melons on my terrace that gets heavy winds once in a while and hence I decided to leave them on the ground. I have some shadenetting that i can use to support melons. Thanks for the idea.

      gg

  • hey there geek gardener! I am in Vermont USA and our outside growing season is at maximum 7 months, but watermelons would only like to grow outside for 5 of those months. With that said, we have to be very careful and baby our watermelons to get them to produce. I recommend the following:
    – Do not disturb the roots when transplanting to a new pot, you reduce shock and they are happier!
    – Letting them grow up a vine is wonderful because it increase airflow, and reduces your chance of getting powdery mildew on the leaves.
    – When the fruits get too big for the vine to support them, you can tie pantyhose to your trellis and make a hammock for the fruit!
    Hope this helps! Beg my pardon if you already knew this :)

    • geekgardener

      Hi Herbaloo,

      Really good suggestions. Thanks for the same. I follow these in my next batch. THere is always something new to learn :).

      gg

  • My GG stands for Great Grandmother – What a neat idea! Pots! I have to wonder if deer eat watermelon?

    We had five acres of melons when I was 5. They were HUGE, and they were delicious. That was in Oklahoma, USA. My Dad sold them by the truckload.

    Thanks for the idea.

    • geekgardener

      Thanks for visiting lifeaftereighty,

      I would love to have a deer eat the watermelons in my garden. :) We see watermelon everyday here but for a deer we have to visit a zoo. :D. It must be exciting to have a farm and grow them in large numbers.

      gg

  • GreenWorldPeace14

    Hey, I am doing this same thing with my garden this year. I planted all my tomamtoes in pots, and am going to finish transplanting the others (including watermelon (: ) when it’s nice enough out. I thought it would be good because you can move them to follow the sun or if it gets too cold. Also, plants in pot are less suspectable to deiases because of potting soil. And on Saturday, in an attempt to be ‘green’, I took old soup cans and planted some seeds in them to see if the would grow. Nothing yet, but it’s only been two days. (Don’t worry, I poked drainage holes in the bottom.)
    Also, last year I planted pumpkins and watermelons in my garden. When the fruit was heavy, but not ripe enough to be picked, it started to rot because it was on the ground. Is there any thing I should do differently or something I could do in general to stop this?
    Thanks,
    GWP14

    • geekgardener

      Keeping the plants in pots gives us so much control. Regarding the rotting, it could be because of the place where the fruit touches the wet soil is more prone to rot/fungus. You can add some coarse mulch underneath the fruit and lay the fruit on it. Or like other have said, you can use a netting to hang the fruit if its at a height.

      hope this helps.
      gg

    • Satish Dayal

      Hi GWP 14 and gg!

      This is regarding the rotting of the fruit on the ground. I take the liberty of giving hereunder the following ideas suggested to me by a friend:
      1. Let the vine spread on ground that does not require to be watered. This means that one has to plan in such a way that while the plants are in narrow beds, there is sufficient land next to such beds which does not need to be watered and where the fruit-bearing vine can fan out.
      2. As each fruit is formed, one could place a piece of thermofoam under it. The foam I am talking about is the one that comes as a packaging material with almost all consumer durables today and is thrown away by all of us.
      If you are successful, even I might try growing water melons and pumpkins!
      I just remembered something that I noticed often while travelling by train in my childhood. All the quarters near railway crossings would have pumpkins growing on their slanting roofs. Now, I know why! It was to avoid the very problem you are facing. May be it will be even better if the foam is placed in a slanting position by propping one side thereof with some stone. Just a wild thought !
      Regards
      Satish Dayal

  • jscottg

    I just spotted your blog (it’s featured on Freshly Pressed). You’ve given me some great ideas that may well allow me to prevail over the critters that normally eat my plants just before everything is ripe. Thanks!

  • Very nice. It is great to see gardens from the other side of the planet.

  • Ah, nothing says summer like watermelon.

  • Very impressive! Congratulations on your hard work! I really want to see how bigger those watermelon can get:) It is very interesting to see them getting bigger and bigger everyday:) The same thing happens with my tomatoes right now! :)

    • geekgardener

      Thanks Kendylau, Having grown tomatoes, I totally relate to what you are saying. Everyday is interesting when you have tomatoes growing.

      :)

  • Hi GG,

    This is incredible and very inspiring! Having recently moved, leaving our garden behind, we’re feeling uprooted in more ways than one. You’ve provided us with the perfect solution for this season. Thank you so much and I look forward to reading (and learning) more! :)

    • geekgardener

      Tara,

      Leaving behind a garden is such a difficult thing and the only thing that can help is to start a new garden. A growing/yielding plant is such a stress reliever. I go to my garden every time i am little stressed and I come back energetic. Works every single time.

      gg

  • I think I’ll try this along the chain link fence in my back yard. Maybe I can get something to hang on the fence to support the fruit. Climate is a lot cooler than where you are, but lots of sun. I’ll give it a try.

    Bill
    Evanston, WY

    • geekgardener

      Thanks for stopping by Bill. Letting it on the fence is a good idea. It gets more light and air circulation. Readers suggest the use of pantyhose / netting to make a hammock for the fruit. Give it a shot and keep us posted :).

      gg

  • Ram

    Hey GG,

    I want to try simple hydrophonics (passive type). Would you know where I can get the solution in B’lore?

    Thanks for all the info you provided on the post, my capsicum, tomato and zuccini have germinated.. I hope they yeild going forward :)

    Ram.

  • You have a very interesting mix of interest and I like your container plants. They look very healthy. I heard some people who are planning to develop a roof-top gardening program in India. Since you are from that part of the globe, what are your thoughts on this? My first reaction was that it is not feasible…but then I do not know how scarce land is in India. I don not even understand what the people might think about it.
    Thanks you.

    • geekgardener

      Thanks Helen. Roof top gardening is the way to go from here. It is quite feasible and its not about the scarcity of land. But the feasibility. Farm lands/cultivable lands are quite far and people who own them are in cities (mostly ) . A terrace garden bridges the gap.

      gg

  • wow- congratulations- I only manage to grow weeds in my garden… planted a few seeds for some flowers the other year- yes, so even those did not turn out… so I am definitely jealous of your gardening skills! :o)

    • geekgardener

      Hi Kris,

      I think its a matter of time. I have had my own share of plant-killings done and it taught me a lot. Keep trying :)

      gg

  • Chitra

    Hi gg,
    Fantastic to grow watermelons in containers.
    I always thought that watermelons require a lot of soil and space.
    I am tempted to try, just a few questions.
    Is it too late to sow watermelon seeds? (I stay in Navi Mumbai, rains are supposed to start in June 1st week.)
    And will the seeds of watermelon bought from the market germinate and give fruit?
    Also, I had sown some okra seeds, had 75% germination rate, but the seedlings are very long. Did I sow the seeds too deep(2inch) hence lack of sunlight or is there some other problem? Can I use these seedlings or should I sow more seeds?
    Thanks.
    Chitra

    • geekgardener

      Hi Chitra,

      You can start watermelon now too. Choose a smaller variety for containers. You can try the seeds from store bought WMs also but it will most probably be a hybrid and wont give the same taste. You can try it though.

      Long seedlings are due to lack of light. You can use them if they are not weak/lanky. I would say discard them and sow again.BTW how long are they?

      gg

      • chitra

        Hi,
        I will definitely try watermelon but maybe next year, the weather has turned very fickle too hot one day and cloudy the next but no rains yet, it’s too early.
        Regarding the okra seedlings only 2 out of the 3 that germinated survived, and they are both about 10cm long but with two real leaves each now. I can see some small white spots on the underside, not sure whether it is some disease or pest but am trying the get rid of it with an organic pesticide.
        Anyways I am planning to plant some more okra and transplant the healthy seedlings this time.
        Thanks an lot for your advice.
        Chitra

        • geekgardener

          Hi Chitra,

          Check if it is mealy bug infestation. If so, you can use spirit+water(1:1) ratio and spray on it.

          gg

          • Chitra Vaidya

            Hi,
            No it is not mealy bug, but after your comment I searched the net for mealy bug photos.
            Turns out that I have this infestation on my brinjal and tomato plants. I was manually removing the big bugs with a stick. It did not work on my brinjals, but tomatoes are fine. They have started fruiting now.
            I will try the spirit+water on these plants now.
            Your posts and replies are of great help and are helping to bring me back to gardening after many years
            Thanks a lot
            Chitra

          • geekgardener

            Chitra,

            You were saying it looks like a white spot. Are they big insects that you can remove with a stick? are they white in color? Can you post a link to the picture?..

            Glad to be of help.

            GG

  • Yum, I love watermellon. Wish they would grow over here in Ireland.

  • Thanks for this interesting blog and photos. I live in Spain and we eat a lot of water-melons. I will have a go at trying to grow some.

  • K. Meena

    Hi GG:

    Looks very tempting ! I will try this probably next Summer. I have a doubt about growing gourd plants (and in general, creepers that love to crawl on the ground). Three of my yellow pumpkin plants, which I grew in 20 l bucket died ovenight; this , after having grown for nearly 10 feet , and showing great promise in the form of small pumpkins. When I checked, I noticed that they are weak at the point they leave the bucket and start growing down on the floor. Have you noticed this? Is there anything to be done so that these plants , when they bend down from the container, do not become weak at the spot they leave the container?

    Regards
    Meena K

    • geekgardener

      Hi Meena,

      You can try it this summer too. They yield very quickly. And for the other question. Yes I have noticed it and the only thing i can think of is to not let them bend near the crown area. If you keep the media little deeper in the container. It grows vertically to some extent and then starts bending. Either that or train them vertically for some height and keep the container in a place that wont keep the stem moving.
      hope this helps. May be others have better a solution

      gg

  • Very goog post , thanks
    dedetização redes de proteção sp automáticos

  • This is such a neat idea! I love watermelon. Think I will try this idea.

  • I was thinking about growing watermelon or just a melon in general, but wasn’t sure. I saw some blue potatoes that I want to try out.

  • Very interesting post and I like your pictures. It makes me want to start a small garden, but I don’t know if I’m too late or not. I’m in Florida.

    • geekgardener

      Hi Gracekay,

      Thanks. I am not too sure how the weather’s like in Florida. I am guessing its summer? If so you can definitely start a garden.

      gg

  • Sumathy

    Wow GG! Great! Nice write up, also inspiring and informative. Now I want to try this out. Looks like you are busy with sugar babies now a days.
    Keep posting.
    Regards,
    Sumathy

  • homegardener

    hi gg,
    i like your blog very much and it is very useful too.
    I want to start soil free plantation can you please tell me what is the alternative of per-lite and what are the fertilizers need for the plants in different stage of there life.

    • geekgardener

      Hi sandip,

      Cocopeat is an alternative to soil. Regarding your other question, it depends on plants you are growing.

      gg

  • [...] Growing Watermelon in Containers Posted on May 16, 2010 by geekgardener [...]

  • Snimar

    Hi GG,

    Let me say that i am a TOTAL FAN of ur blog..actually ur garden :)
    I shifted to Mumbai, where space & greenery is both premium. I have Star Cluster, Bleeding Heart Vine & Lantana. After going thru ur blog, I am recommitted to the idea of kitchen gardening….

    Actually I wanted to ask a question…Can I grow plants in pots without drainage holes?
    Like glass jugs, coffee mugs etc. I have read so much abt it on net (with gravel, without gravel etc etc etc) that I am totally confused. I hope this doesn’t top as the most dumb question on ur blog :(
    I will go with ur recommendation on this one …Can u or some of the other experienced & knowledgeable fellow gardeners (Fun-gardener) enlighten me plz….

    • geekgardener

      Hi Snimar,

      Thanks for reading. For your question. Its is a must to have drainage holes in the pots. You can have grow plants in them without the drainage holes too. But you have to becareful in watering them. Never let water stay in the bottom. If you always water only after the medium is dry them I think you can grow them in pots without holes. But for growing vegetables in pots, it is necessary that they always have moist soil. I suggest go with pots with holes.

      thanks
      gg

    • Hi Snimer,
      Your question is not at all dumb, infact the technique you are referring to is called hydroculture. You can google it, its a wonderful art.
      The rose plant you see in one of my post (http://fungardener.wordpress.com/2009/12/05/hydroponics-signs-of-success/) is actually hydroculture.
      Keep us updated about the progress.
      -FG

  • Snimar

    Hi GG,

    I have got spider mites & mealy bugs on my Lantana..The spider mites are threatening others as well……PLEASE HELP!!!!!

    • geekgardener

      Hi Snimar,

      You can use rubbing alcohol+water(1:1 ratio) mixture and spray on the infected area. This will control.

      gg

      • Jyothi

        Hi GG:
        I have also got mealy bugs in my hibiscus … Instead of spirit, can i use any of the consumable alchohols that we get??
        If so…., which one is the best ???
        GG..I have one query… you start off on all plants with seeds bought from outside… after the first fruiting, do you save the seeds under all the plants or for evry season / planting do you get your seeds from outside ???

        I have found a good garden shop in Delhi and am excited about slowly starting off my veggie garden, although now i have my flower garden… I have papaya, lemon, and several flowering plants.

        Jyothi.

        • geekgardener

          Hi Jyothi,

          Spirit contains more than 90% alcohol ( i could be wrong) but our consumable alcohol have very less alcohol content. I am not sure how effective they will be. However you can give it a try.

          For the plants whose seeds are difficult/expensive to get outside I save my own seeds. Otherwise I dont bother.

          Good luck
          gg

        • Seema

          Can you please share the garden shop you were mentioning about.
          Thanks
          Seema

  • One additional step I take is to cover the watermelon fruit with netting to keep the insects from boring into it.

  • V. Srinivasan

    Excellent GG, Melons looks pretty nice. What about leaves, seems some leaves dried and some leaves has yellow spots, is this normal or any simptems

    Goodluck,

    V. Srinivasan

    • geekgardener

      Hello Srinivasan.

      Thanks. Yes you are right. There are some leaves dried. Actually there was a powdery mildew attack on the plant .I sprayed wettable sulphur and powdery mildew came under control to some extent. This is not normal.

      GG

  • Chitra

    I did comment earlier on one of your very old posts. But I repeat Man tu se great ho. What dedication, patience and creativity. Though in agricultural field and having keen interest to garden I hardly find time and energy. Really hats off to you. I spent two days and read all your blogs. Loved it. Will be a regular on it now

  • Chitra

    To continue by earlier comment I got so inspired by you gardening prowess that I went on and ordered online for a lot of seeds. But nowhere do I find this egg plant white and earliana cabbage mentioned. May be its sold only In bangalore??? Would you be knowing someplace in Hyderabad. Though not in continuation to your water melon post I am writing for all your posts. Again as you have gone through a series of hierloom tomatoes can you grade them for taste as salad. people like me with lesser space may choose only a few instead of experimenting with the whole lot.

    • geekgardener

      Hi Chitra,

      Sometimes very good varieties come to lalbagh and very soon they vanish. Could you elaborate your question? I didnt quite get you.

      gg

      • Chitra

        Sorry I have been reading too much of your posts and was trying to get all the discussion into one .
        My first question is is there someplace I can order at least online your eggplant white and earliana cabbage?
        Second – if i want to grow some of the heirloom tomatoes I wanted to know which are tops for taste ?? Like some variety kids will like to gobble up raw.

        • geekgardener

          Hi Chitra,

          No problem at all. I am not too sure where you might get white brinjal but you can get cabbages from many sites like http://www.biocarve.com and http://www.indamseedsonline.com. Get any cabbage with 55-60 days as their maturing age.

          And for the tomatoes, from what I have grown, any cherry tomato is fun to grow as well as to eat. For regular tomatoes, Marmande , Pink of Berne were the Best. Trust me.. cherry tomatoes on the plant will tempt anyone let alone kids :)..

          gg

  • Ramya S

    Hi GG

    Can we grow veggie garden in an apartment balcony? (Assuming it has sufficient
    lighting, say it get direct sunlight from morning 6 till noon 1) Can we use coco peat and
    supply with nutrients? What do u suggest?

    Ramya

    • geekgardener

      Hi Ramya,

      You can grow many vegetables in a balcony that gets sunlight from 6-1. Yes you can use cocopeat and supply nutrients . or you can also use a soil based potting mix and use nutrients like NPK once in a while. The latter is easier.

      gg

  • Ramya S

    Hi gg,

    I live in Hyderabad. Do you know any coco peat suppliers here?
    Also place where i can get the nutrients/salts?
    Please help me out.

    Ramya

    • geekgardener

      Ramya,

      I am not too sure where it is available in HYD. But I am going request the readers to send the places they know who sell gardening material so that we can have a database.

      gg

      • V. Srinivasan

        Hi Ramya,

        In Hyd – you may get water soluble fertilisers at PR Agro Nutri Pvt. Ltd. , G/1, Sai Keerthi Towers, B K Guda, Sanjeeva Reddy Nagar, Hyderabad-500038. Tel: 0091 40 23801288, Fax: 0091 40 23801299 http://www.pragro.com/. You may check with them the availability of small quantity.

        Goodluck,

        V. Srinivasan

  • Yoga

    Hi G.G,

    I saw your website and the blogs , quite intresting indeed.
    Just to give you a background , I am a beginner and I dont have any clue about lot of aspects related to gardening.
    But i am very must passionate about lerning a lot about the same from you.As of now I have got only few plants which i have kept it in my verandah where I have ample amount of sunlight,the problem which i am facing is when I buy the plant (for ex. Hibiscus ) it looks good for the next 1 week and then it starts becoming dry (though I water it relegiously everyday morning) and the leaves starts to turn yellow and then they fall off.After a week I can see a set of new green leaves but after sometime the same process continues.It’s been 45 days now, I haven’t seen even one flower expect on the day i purchased the plant from the nursery.

    Am I doing anything wrong in the whole process from selecting the sapling to watering the same.How do you prepare the soil for your plant , is there any method, pls share the same.

    I am so concerned now, because I have got 4 more plants (lime, samanthi etc) and I dont want to see them go dry due to my lack of knowledge in gardening.

    Expecting your advice on the same.

    Regards,
    Yoga

  • Ramya S

    Thanks a lot Srinivasan !!!

  • Chitra

    Thank you GG. I ordered some seeds from indam and got it today. Very very excited. I am trying some pop bottle sub irrigation planters. Would,nt say its working very well for me with amaranthus seeds. I now live in an independant rented house but would shortly move into an apt. So gearing up to do some container gardening. Have you tried sub irrigation planters. You seem to have a knack for new things. Why dont you try and give us a write up

  • chitra

    Hi Ramya
    I am from hyderabad too. I came across a company called SV coirs on the web , based at Begumpet. Yet to check out availability. The road at Basheerbag cross roads has a number of garden suppliers and pesticide dealers. May be you check that out. Hope GG I can reply this way coz its your blog and not a forum

  • Watermelon my new cultivation in my garden now!

  • Ramkumar G

    Hi GG,

    Need some help, planted some capsicums. Both the plants have about 8 leaves now, but it looks curled and burnt. Any particular reason this might be happening? If not attended now, it does not look like it’s going to last.

    Ram.

    • geekgardener

      Hi Ramkumar,

      I think your plants are having Leaf Curl Virus. Once affected it is very difficult to control this. The yield will be affected too. It is better to remove the plant and plant new ones. Do not plant in the same pot. It will again infect the new plant as well. Use yellow sticky traps to control flies( esp white flies) that act as a vector for many viral infections.
      gg

  • Ramya

    Hi GG,
    I am new to ur blog.happened to peep in while searching about stuffs related to home gardening. Planning to have my home garden.Already had rose garden (of about 10 varieties)but lost them all. Now planning to have veggies & fruits..Can u help & guide me out.

  • Ramya S

    Hi gg
    I’m using cocopeat as the potting mix. Can i use only water without nutrients for a week? In case i go out of station, it would be easier for the maid to water the plants rather than mixing nutrients with water.

    Can i use cocopeat and compost as the potting mix? In this case too, can i use just water?Both on a regular basis and when i’m out of station too.

    Please clarify.

    • geekgardener

      HI Ramya,

      If you are using only cocopeat, then there is nutrients in it. Watering 1 or 2 days is fine but doing it for a week will result in nutrient deficiency. You can use compost+cocopeat and it can be watered with plain water for a week.

      gg

      • Ramya S

        In case I mix cocopeat, vermiculate and soilrite( shopkeeper told its the alternate for perlite as perlite is not commonly available in hyd), will it sustain for a week with just water?

        • geekgardener

          Ramya,

          Cocopeat, Perlite and Vermiculite all of these dont have any nutrients in it. The plants will definitely survive for a week. But their growth will be impacted.

          gg

    • Chitra

      HI Ramya
      Are you the one from Hyderabad? Can you please tell me what was the cost of cocopeat?

  • PK

    You can get cocopeat bricks in Hyderabad at Hyderguda. It also has a whole lot of fertiliser and seed shops.

  • guddu

    hello gg,
    I just hit on your blog through google after attempting to look for vegetable gardening.
    It is really amazing to see you do all these things and sharing all these with us. Thank you for you blog and you inspired me and people like me.

    I am interested in gardening and I just started gardening in my balcony. I have started reading your blogs one by one.
    thanks

  • Subha

    Hi GG,
    This is Subha from chennai. Actually i’ve been following your blog for quite sometime.Its very informative and actually i should thank you for inspiring me into doing kitchen gardening. After reading ur blogs i went about planting the seeds from a local nusery shop and planted tomatoes, brinjal, watermelon, bittergourd, okra and chilly on our terrace . Only bittergourd and lady’s finger were successful. I’ve heard chillies are easy to grow and easily fruit but unfortunately nothing worked. I am not doing hydrophonic so i’ve used only red calyey soil,cowdung and vermicompost and apart from that i’ve used Panchagavya. I am not able see any brinjal or tomatoes or chillies. Is chennai weather not good for these plants?Can u plz guide me as to where i could hv gone wrong. but my plants are very healthy and flowering nicely but the flowers fall out pathetically. Or could you suggest a place in chennai where i could better seeds.

    Also i’ve a few rose plants to which i’ve put this rosemix as suggested by the shopkeeper and they hv been flowering nicely
    but off late these flowers and stems are turning black. Inspite of this problem there are new leaves(red color) coming up like anything. Can you plz guide me as why the stems, flowers and leaves are blackening.

    thanks,
    Subha

    • geekgardener

      Hi Subha,

      I am happy to hear that this blog inspired you. I really appreciate the efforts you have taken so far in growing vegetables. The reason flowers are falling off could be due to lack of pollination. You can try pollinating the flowers yourself.

      http://www.google.com/search?q=artificial+pollination

      Summer can also be the reason for lack of pollination. Try the manual pollination and it should work. If it doesn’t then we should look at the nutrients the plant are getting.

      Regarding the blackening of rose stems/leaves/flowers buds. I am guessing it could be a fungal infection or could be canker as well. It is better to cut the affected stems and apply a fungicide.
      gg

  • david

    Something else you can try when growing melons vertically is to make slings. These are just hanging hammocks of netting, plastic bags, whatever can be used to hang the melon. Ive even used the mesh hairnets you see workers wearing in restaurants, factories, etc.!

    This is common trick in greenhouses, one you should bring to your own small garden.

    • geekgardener

      Thanks David. I am going to try growing them vertically next season. It always good to bring nice greenhouse practices to our own kitchen garden.

      Thanks for the tip.

  • Asha Ram

    Hi GG,

    I have bookmarked your Web site. It’s lovely to see your vegetables grow splendidly, and to read your postings.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Regards,
    Asha
    (http://rake-and-spade.blogspot.com)

  • [...] Rooftop, balcony, Kitchen gardening and Hydroponics Skip to content HomeAboutContact Me ← Growing Watermelon in Containers Growing Spinach in Containers [...]

  • STS

    Hi gg, Sorry to bother you again. As a medium for growing, how is coco peat different from pot mix. From you experience, which one is good for quick and steady growth.

    Regards,
    STS

    • geekgardener

      Hey STS,

      By potmix, you mean the mix with soil in it?. Cocopeat is preferred because it doesn’t compact like soil and provides good drainage and is very light weight. Easy to work with and doesn’t leave stain marks. Steady growth totally depends on the nutrients. Since cocopeat lacks any nutrient in itself. There is a need for fertilizers.
      Soil has some amount of nutrients until they are leached out.

      Hope this helps.

      • STS

        Thanks gg! I was referring to the pot mix available in Lalbagh, the bag does not talk about the contents in potmix. It certainly is soil based. Where in Bangalore can I purchase coco peat from?

        Regards,
        STS

        • sam

          Hi STS,

          I find that the pot mix available in Lalbaugh is mostly red soil with little manure in it. However, separate cocopeat and manure bags are also available there.

          GG, I had a related question. I made my pot mix with cocopeat+manure+some red soil, and sowed seeds (tomato/capsicum/chilli) couple of weeks back. Seeds have germinated and saplings are about a inch tall. (Except that not a single chilli seed germinated) When should I start giving additional fertilizer and at what frequency. I want to use an organic fertilizer, do you have an recommendation? Can I find that in Lalbaugh?

          Thanks much,
          Sam

  • VS

    Once again, my search for coco peat retailers in hyd landed me at your blog. Thanks GG for coming up with such an informative blog. Wondering if it would be nice to have a thread for sharing such information on the forums.

    Ramya S, Chitra, V Srinivasan, PK thanks for sharing the info.

    • geekgardener

      Thanks VS, Glad you found my blog helpful. It was exactly the idea behind starting this blog.

      Sure, We will have separate forum for discussion material availability.

  • Fanof_geekgardner

    Hi gg,
    I like all your posts especially this one. I started to think like everybody should produce at least a small ratio of their daily need. No doubt after some time greenery will be more and we have lot of satisfaction also.
    Now I used my backyard about 10×7 ft size to grow bitter-gourd and now I planted snake gourd, and beans (chicken avarai), peerakai (tamil name) all in 3×3 and made support with bamboos. Total cost for seed is only Rs. 10 + support bamboo Rs. 100. about 6 feet it grownup.
    But my bitter gourd died because of beetle and another one is yellow in color but very dangerous it killed bitter gourd vine in a weektime. Tell me some suggestion about pest to control this.

    cheers,
    A fan of yours

    • geekgardener

      Hello Fan!,

      Thanks for your nice words! :). This post for some reason was the most popular. It got featured in wordpress “FreshlyPressed” list.
      It nice to hear that you have converted your backyard into a veggie garden and that too in a cost effective way.

      To check the beetles, its better to do a thorough inspection of the plants and hand pick them first. Use neem oil spray. Controlling beetles is little difficult. You also need to control the grubs. The caterpillar phase of those beetles. When I was gardening with soil, I have seen grubs almost the size of my hand. They bury deep in the soil and live there.

      happy gardening.
      gg

  • greendreams

    Hi gg,

    I too have one water melon vine. It gave me some female flowers last month. But it didn’t grow. All died. And the November rain worsened the health of the plant. Now also the plant is there but no hope to get a melon from that.

    Regards,
    Greendreams

  • sush

    This is awesome. I never knew we could grow watermelon in a container!! Can you tell me if I should use any fertilizers to grow them or just plenty of water is sufficient??

  • Seema

    Hi:
    I frequently visit your blog and get inspired by it. I would love to know where to get this sugar baby seeds in Delhi/ gurgaon area. Please let m eknow.
    Thanks
    Seema

  • Hi GG

    Great Gardener, Generous gardener, : ) I cam across your site today! And wondered how i could have missed it for so long.Wonderful work, presented beautifully.Congrats.

    We grew watermelon on our terrace too in Amrut Mitti. Last year was the first time we ever did it and this year are encouraged to do it again.

    http://natuecocityfarming.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2010-01-01T00:00:00-08:00&updated-max=2011-01-01T00:00:00-08:00&max-results=8

    keep sharing

    Smiles

    Preeti

    • Hello Preeti,

      Thanks for stopping by and its a such pleasure for having you as a visitor. I have read your blog several times and also had a chance to listen to your talk in National seminar on terrace gardening in Bangalore. ..

      Watermelon is very rewarding and such a delight to grow one at home. This year too I have one growing (although started little late). I checked out the link and the melon looks healthy!..

      Continue your great work and thanks for the nice words.
      GG

  • supriya

    This is simply lovely..,would love to see even more and get inspired from you. Will keep all your inputs in mind and start my lil garden soon and definitely will ask your help on this.

    Cheers,
    Supriya

  • aparna

    Hi,

    I am aparna live in navi Mumbai. I have terrace and I try to grow plants like Lemon,curry leaves and haldi etc. I usually put all my vegetable scarps to pots directly. That is how the melon started growing in pot. Now it has started fruits and lots of flower are there on plant. I do not use cocopeat or anything else. Can u tell me what I need to take care at this stage so as to get good fruit. I saw that some of the fruits withered. The help would be appreciated. Thanks

  • FruitsFan

    Hi GG,
    Very cool page and very helpful.
    I live in Mumbai & starting with Window gardening(not much of terrace we have here..:)).

    I have ample space to use for fruits and veggies gardening and need some advise on what i should start with. Preferable easy ones first as i dont want to be demotivated the first time..:D.

    Also can you advise some place to buy seeds in Mumbai, Powai? And how much to buy ??

    Thx,
    FruitsFan

  • geekgardener

    Chitra, Its not a problem at all. Thanks for sharing the info. Appreciate it.

    gg

  • Ramya S

    Thanks a lot chitra!!

    Here are some more suppliers i could find out in hyderabad.

    Mysore Nandi Tarpaulins Manufacturing.Co‎ – 5-5-201/1, Lala Temple Road, Rani Gunj, Secunderabad.

    Yaaganti Seeds Private Ltd‎ – # 411B, Babukhan Estate, Basheer Bagh, Hyderabad

    Hytasu Corporatin – #3-6-295, F2, Pioneer Chamber, Hyderguda, Hyderabad,

    Hope it helps !

  • chitra

    HI
    Thats exactly what I was telling. Just go to Basheerbagh you can pick up lots of other things too required for gardening. There are a number of shops on the same lane
    chitra

  • geekgardener

    Hi Yoga,

    Thanks for visiting my website.

    I can understand your concern. When you buy a plant from Nursery, you must understand, they are regularly fed with fertilizer and you get to see only the best of their plants. Hence after you bring it home, the dosage of fertilizers stop and the plants are deficient in nutrients.

    I suggest you add some fertilizer. orgainc/inorganic, both of them work. YOu can add vermicompost by loosening the top 2 inches of soil and mixing it in. Or mix 3g of water soluble NPK 19-19-19 and water it once a week. You will see a difference.

    Thanks
    gg

  • geekgardener

    Hi Chitra,

    You are welcome. Nice to hear that you got the seeds so quickly. I haven’t tried subirrigation planters. But I would love to give it a shot. Sometime back a friend of mine offered to give an EarthBox. It didn’t come yet.I will try making one myself and try posting about it too. Thanks for the Idea.

    gg

  • chitra

    I somehow am not finding success with the SIPs. I see the wick working very well and the soil being moist all the time. But my greens which germinated all dried up just like that. But it seems so convenient for apt dwellers for growing greens as per house needs. I saved up all our summer 2l soda bottles for this.

  • geekgardener

    Wondering why the plants would dry up. Is the soil surface moist?. Sometimes the problem with wick is the area around the wick will get wet and the rest will be dry. Check it out. It definitely is a saver if it works well.

  • Chitra

    I checked. The soil was quite wet. I thick I got over-enthu and top watered too which may have been the cause. I am trying again. have to set this up before I move into the apartment

  • sts

    Hi gg, I came across your blog few days back. I must complement you for the excellent work you are doing by sharing your experience.

    I am new to roof top farming and would like your view on if I am doing it right and if there are any changes I need to bring in.

    I have bitter guard, tomatoes, capsicum, beens and cabbage, all at various levels of growth. Capsicum, Beens and Cabbage are still in germinating cup for which I used the small use and through plastic cup. Bitter guard and tomato’s are in pots and around 4 weeks old. Recently got some more pots and seeds(Palak and Coriander) . I used long tray to sow palak, its just fews days old and sprouting well.

    I got potmix, compost and vermicompost from Lalbagh and used a mix of these during germination and also in pot. I have not used any fertilizers yet.

    My queries – Are the above(potmix, compost and vermicompost) enough? Do I need to add any fertilizers? When to add fertilizers if any and at what stage of growth? How to avoid common plant infections, what sprays do you recommend?

    Expecting your help and advice.

    Regards,
    STS

  • Hi,

    Thanks for stopping by. You have quite a lot growing !. The pot mix you mentioned in good enough. That said, few veggies can really use a supplementary dose of fertilizer. You can use NPK 19:19:19 water soluble 2-3 gm per litre every week.
    You can use neem oil+soap mixture for most of the pests.

    Good luck
    gg

  • STS

    Hi gg, thanks for responding. Is NPK 19:19:19 fully organic or a chemical supplement that is not harmful to health. Is there any particular brand name that you would recommend or is “NPK 19:19:19″ a brand in itself.

    neem oil+soap mixture – Again, any particular brand you would recommend for neem oil. Need some more info on soap :), what type of soup and quantity should I use. Any particular ratio?

    Regards,
    STS

  • geekgardener

    NPK 19:19:19 is just a composition that contains Nitrogen, Phosphorus (P2O5)and potassium in the ration 19:19:19. There are several companies selling that mix. For neem oil mix, use 30ml of neem oil per litre and a teaspoon of dish soap. I use VIM drops.

  • STS

    Thanks gg! Do you use panchagavya? Would that have right amount of NPK? Can you pls help me with details of where I can buy panchagavya in Bangalore.

    Another query – I have sowed palak in a mix of potmix+vermicompost+neam based compost. Its been 2 weeks and palak has germinated very well but I see fungus like formation on the top layer of the sand… lot of white patches. What could be the cause and how do I get rid of the fungus formation.

    Regards
    STS

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