2007 Statewide Watermelon Trial - Cultural Practices Specific to Location


Transplanted: February 28, 2007 (average plant population of 1,089plants/ A)
Harvested (twice): May 21 and June 4, 2007
 Fertilization: Fertilized with 12-12-6 at 10gal/A (wt. 10.71 lbs/gal) for a total of seven times on every other irrigation run through the course of the season. (Rate of actual N-P-K in lbs per acre of 90-90-45).
 Irrigation:  Transplanted plants into test plot and drip irrigated Feb.28th. Drip tape was placed 6 inches deep and 6 inches offset from the center of the black plastic mulch bed. About 1 inch of water was applied per acre during each irrigation for a total of 14 irrigations on about 5 to 7 day intervals.
 Pest Control: After plants were established two applications of Platinum were applied 1 week apart at 4oz/A. One application of Nova was applied for powdery mildew and one application of Trigard was applied for leafminers.
 Study Comments: Excellent yields and quality was observed in this sandy location. Overall the season was very dry with some showers near the 2nd harvest. Whitefly and leafminers were present but kept under control..

College Station

Transplanted: Not planted due to rain.

Crystal City

Transplanted: April 27, 2007 (average plant population of 2,613 plants/ A)
Harvested: Not harvested due to rain.
 Fertilization: Pre-plant fetilizer applied with 40 units of nitrogen, 60 units of phosphorous, and 20 units of sulfur per acre. Two nitrogen applications were applied with about 35 units of nitrogen per application during the growing season. (Rate of actual N-P-K in lbs per acre of 110-6-0).
 Irrigation: Drip irrigation; watered at planting and then one other time; Over 30 inches of rain received over the next three months.
 Pest Control: Sprayed as needed.
 Study Comments: Plant growth was good, but not as good as in years past which was attributed to the cloudy weather and too much rain. Fruit set was fair to good. Too much rain was encountered during fruit maturity.


Transplanted: April 16, 2007 (average plant population of 1,452plants/ A)
Harvested: Not harvested due to rain.


Transplanted: May 15, 2007 (average plant population of 1,815 plants/ A)
Harvested (twice): August 17 and 29, 2007
Fertilization: Nitrogen and phosphorous was pre-plant incorporated about one week prior to transplanting. (Rate of actual N-P-K in lbs per acre of 80-20-0).
Irrigation: Drip-irrigated as needed on bare ground.
Pest Control: The test site was treated with pre-transplant applications of Strategy (3.5 pints/A) plus Sandea (0.5 oz/A) for weed control. The test site was weeded by hand as needed during the course of the trial. There were no major outbreaks of disease or insects during the course of the study.
 Study Comments: Plants were seeded in the greenhouse on April 9 and transplanted in the field on May 15. Plants were transplanted late due to wet field conditions. Plants were transplanted by hand into single rows at a spacing of 3’ within row and 8’ between rows. A diploid pollinator was also transplanted at the beginning and end of each plot, and bee hives were brought in to improve pollination. The test site was previously sprayed with herbicides for weed control, and the crop was monitored during the season for weeds, insects and diseases. Plants were not grown on black plastic but were drip irrigated regularly. Early season, cool wet conditions slowed plant growth during the first month. In addition, temperatures were cool to moderate throughout the duration of the trial (highest recorded temperature was in the mid-90’s) and this may have affected overall yields. Plots were harvested on August 17 and again on August 29. Fruit was weighed individually, categorized by size and culls. Watermelons from several plots within the test site were stolen prior to the second harvest, and yields in those plots were estimated.