Approximately 40-45 seeds per gram. Cucumis melo Lot# ME29003 Minnesota Midget Cantaloupe is a compact cantaloupe that usually grows on 91-121 cm (3-4’) vines and produces between 6–8 super sweet, softball sized melons. You can even grow ‘Minnesota Midget’ in a larger container on your patio, because the vines are trainable and are easily managed to the point of being well behaved. A delicious treat for one or two people.
Start melon seeds indoors in a seed starting mix or a good soil mix at least 3-5 weeks before the last frost date. Sow 3-4 seeds each in 3-4 inch pots. Keep soil moist and maintain a temperature between 27-30ºC (80-90º). Once the seedlings appear, lower the temperature to 24ºC (75ºF) for about a week until the first true leaves begin to emerge. Thin to one plant per pot with scissors and lower the temperature to 18-21ºC (65º-70ºF). Seeds should germinate in 3-7 days. Direct seed when soil has warmed up to 23-29˚ C (75-85˚ F). If direct seeding, plant seeds 1-2 weeks following your last frost date. Sow 3 seeds per hill at a depth of 12mm (½”) deep 45cm (18”) apart. Space rows at 122-182cm (4-6’) apart. We start cantaloupe seeds under lights and move to the greenhouse when they have germinated. Sow seeds in pots 12mm (½”) deep in rich organic soil at least 4 weeks before transplanting outside. An outside temperature of 23˚C (75˚F) is healthy enough for seedling growth. Gradually harden off the seedlings prior to transplanting by reducing both temperature and water. We transplant directly into the garden by planting double transplants into hills that are 45cm (18”) apart with rows spaced at 122-182cm (4-6’) apart.
Height at Maturity: Vining type habit. Minnesota Midget Cantaloupe will grow to about 30cm (12”) high and have vines that spread about 91-121 cm (3-4’) long.
Days to Maturity: 65-75 days for maturity from transplants.
Watering: An inch of water a week ensures good growth, whether vegetables are grown in single or wide rows. The amount of rain that falls during the week affects how much you should water your garden. Keep soil consistently moist. Try to water evenly throughout the growing season until harvest. We utilize drip irrigation to keep leaves dry and slow disease development.
Sun/Shade: Full Sun
Spacing after Thinning: 45cm (18") between plants in rows that are 122-182cm (4-6’) apart.
Additional Information: Harvesting melons at perfect maturity can be tricky at best; each type of melon is a little different. In general, cantaloupes slip from vine when ripe. Charantais Cantaloupe can be cut when they have a thick netted skin. Galia melon types slip from the vine and are ready when skin turns bright yellow; honeydews can be cut from the vine when skin turns color. Other indicators of ripeness are when the leaf closest to fruit becomes dried and shriveled and when the stem becomes corky.
Isolate different varieties of melons by 1/4 mile to prevent cross pollination. Tree lines, woods or buildings separating fields can allow for shorter distances. Harvest the melons when ripe for eating. Remove the seeds and pulp and rinse under water until seeds are clean. A light fermentation with a little water can sometimes help in the cleaning process. Simply add 1 cup of water for every cup of seeds and pulp and let sit in a warm place for 2-3 days, stirring daily. Then rinse under water and allow seeds to dry on a tightly woven cloth or plate. We winnow our seeds to remove immature and light seeds. Melon seed will remain viable for 5-6 years under cool and dry storage conditions.