Friday, January 15, 2010

2010 Garden Planning: Bed A

Bed A is one of the two traditional in ground garden beds (click to view larger image):

Bed A will mostly be the melon patch where Charantais Melon, Fastbreak Melon, and Sugar Baby Watermelon vines will run wild and intertwine. Black solar mulch will be used like last year for both soil warming and weed control.

This is the third year that Fastbreak Melons have been grown in the Garden Spot. Last year the yield was impressive even with the abnormal rain and colder temperatures we experienced. Last years harvest was 12 fruit from three plants. There would have probably been more if our summer has been more normal.

Fastbreak Melon from the 2009 Garden

Both the Charantais Melon and Sugar Baby Watermelon are new to the Garden Spot. I am hoping they will both do as well as the Fastbreak Melons have in the past.

A row of Self Watering Containers (SWC) with Roma Tomatoes will frame the north edge. I want to be more careful about leveling the SWCs as I had problems with excess water wicking into one of the unlevel containers last year because the corner dipped into the water reservoir. The SWC can be located elsewhere if I decide I need the garden space.

Tomato SWC from the 2009 Garden

There will be one hill of three zucchini plants which is the same amount of plants that were in the 2009 Garden Spot.

Zucchini from the 2009 Garden

The bottom of Bed A in the half moon shaped section has several perennial herbs, Greek oregano, chives, garlic chives, and hopefully thyme (if it survives the winter). I usually plant other various herbs among these.

Greek Oregano and Chives from the 2009 Garden

Next: Bed B


  1. We have not planted melons although I can't imagine why since we planted everything else under the sun. lol Perhaps this is the year to try. Any special tips? Diana

  2. Gosh, I wish I would have known you would plant sugar baby melons, because I have plenty of seeds. I haven't heard of those fast break melons - do they have an early maturity date or something?

  3. The plans for bed A are looking good! Melons are a difficult crop to grow in my region - the summers are largely just not hot enough long enough. The fast break melon has my interest because it might be able to produce despite those challenges.

  4. That sounds like a really good melon for our area. How is the taste? Maybe you will convince me to grow them. I've grown ambrosia melons before, but they are a real PITA to get to produce here.

  5. I really need to draft up a garden plan. I'm flying blind at the moment. This is indeed a very impress melon harvest. I'll be curious to see how the charantais melon compares.

  6. Di: I would encourage to give melons a try. Select ones with the lowest maturity date. Fast Break has a maturity date of about 70-days. I would also suggest using black plastic solar mulch to help warm the soil and draw the heat of the sun.

    EG: How sweet of you! I picked up the Sugar Baby Watermelon seeds last year on a clearance rack. Couldn’t resist. Fast Break melons have a maturity date only 70-days, so seem to work well here in Maine.

    Laura: I am really curious to see how the Fast Break melons do this year too. They didn’t grow at all during June and July last year when we were experiencing cooler than normal temperatures and lots of rain. But when the warm weather of August hit, they just took off. Too bad the warmth didn’t stay around longer because there were many fruit on the vine that didn’t have a chance to mature. Hopefully this year our summer’s weather will be more on the normal side.

    Daphne: The first Fast Break melons tasted good to us, fresher and sweeter than supermarket cantaloupe. Unfortunately that’s all we have for comparison as I haven’t really tasted other fresh grown melons yet. The later melons really made us drool. Less water and more heat gave them an even sweeter flavor.

    Thomas: This plan will be altered many times, but at least it gives me a general idea how many plants to plan on for now.