video tutorials, tried-and-true tips + our latest learnings to surround you with abundance all season long
How do you know when a melon is ripe?
The million-dollar question!
There is simply no one way, Friends.
Here are the keys to keep in mind.
Here are three clues to help you harvest at just the right moment:
Go knocking on your watermelons! Listen to the tone, feel the resonance in the melon. The lower the tone, the riper the melon. Ripe melons will also have more vibration from within, with unripe melons feeling more solid with a higher pitch 'pink' rather than the deeper 'pank' and deepest 'punk.'
For this method, it's ideal to have multiple melons to give you a reference point. It's also crucial to note that the lowest tone only denotes the ripest melon --- not necessarily a ripe melon. If you're wondering what method to employ in a market, this is the one :)
You'll notice at the base of a watermelon's stem is a green, spiraling tendril. Once the associated watermelon is ripe, that tendril...
I was tempted to share 'seeds to never transplant,' yet never is such strong, dominating language.
There is always more than one way to do things.
In fact, we transplant some of these seeds...
...but only because it keeps our lives more simple ...
...not because the plants prefer it.
So yes, it's true, there are some seeds whose sensitive root systems simply prefer to grow where they're planted. Planting them in soil blocks, cow pots or peat pots is always an option --- just be sure you're transplanting them as soon as seedlings emerge from the soil.
It's counter-intuitive, I know, but directly sowing these seeds in deliciously warm soil after final frost will surround you with earlier and more abundance than their transplanted kin, even in short seasons. Planting them earlier is simply not an equation to get an earlier harvest.
The cucurbit botanical family includes zucchini, summer & winter squash, melon, &...
Each year we trial new varieties and develop new ones, harvesting their seeds and tucking in packets to share with you!
With each season we learn more about our seeds, ourselves, our soil, our community and our climate. Most seed companies are simply repackaging seed they've bought wholesale on the commodity market, which doesn't eliminate all the variables by any means, but it does greatly reduce their risk of not having seed in their packets.
The seeds in our packets is largely harvested on one of Fruition's four farms; we also collaborate with over a dozen talented organic seed growers to bring you the highest quality seed we can source.
And Friends, we don't always reap what we sow. Though we grew a glorious bed of Lime Queen zinnias this summer, persistent rain brought powdery mildew early to her leaves and filled her seedheads with millions of spores instead of seeds. (Thank goodness our Zinderella Peach zinnias, below, were a...
Once final frost has come and gone and the nights are consistently above 50 F, the soil is finally warm enough for the crops that thrive in the heat of summer.
Some of them, like tomatoes and ground cherries, absolutely must be started 6 to 8 weeks prior to final frost to have any chance of surrounding you with abundance in short seasons.
Others, like basil and cosmos, will surround you with abundance whether you transplant or direct sow them.
Here, friends, are the crops whose fragile, sensitive root systems despise being transplanted. When direct-sown, they'll grow faster and fruit earlier, increasing your harvests significantly. (If you must transplant them, be sure to follow the tips on peat/cow pots and soil blocks at the bottom of the list.)
A brush up on botanical Latin! The Cucurbit family classically sprawls and is slightly spiny, including everything from summer squash to winter squash, cantaloupe to cucumber.
⭐️ Rise & Shine: Starting Seeds with Ease ⭐️
For years we’ve been asked to demystify seed starting and here it is: Rise & Shine shares everything you need to start seeds successfully at home in 25 beautiful pages with easy-to-follow instructions and insightful tips for the novice and experienced grower alike.
For years we’ve been asked to demystify seed starting and here it is: Rise & Shine shares everything you need to start seeds successfully at home in 40 beautiful pages with easy-to-follow instructions and insightful tips for the novice and experienced grower alike.