When thinking of summer fruit, watermelon is top of mind. This warm-weather fruit not only needs the right soil to thrive, but the appropriate nutrients to produce the perfectly sweet slice.
Soil, location and timing
Watermelon can be grown throughout many regions of the country, including USDA plant hardiness zones three to eleven. However, due to its need of warm soil (62° F or higher) for optimal growth, watermelon is best suited to deep sandy loam soil, where the soil is generally warmer in the spring and allows for a deeper root penetration.
Improved quality with a balanced diet
Weight, yield and quality are what you’re looking for in a winning fruit crop, but sweetness level can also be attributed to the success of the fruit. Fruits and vegetables typically require more than the basic NPK for optimal quality, size, look and taste. Watermelon needs nutrients like potassium, magnesium, zinc, boron, manganese, calcium and sulfur to promote elasticity and plump fruits.
The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture suggests that poor flavor and lack of sweetness is often due to poor fertility, low potassium, magnesium or boron. Every granule of Rainbow Plant Food contains potassium, magnesium and boron, allowing for a better chance of a sweet, flavorful fruit.
Keep chlorine uptake down
As a chlorine-sensitive crop, watermelon can be susceptible to chlorine toxicity faster than other crops. Though essential to plant growth, excess chlorine can lead to necrosis of the leaves and jeopardize the health of the crop. As the chlorine converts to chloride in the soil and is absorbed through the plant, sensitive crops should be wary of chloride-containing potassium sources that could impact the quality and shelf life of their plant. Rainbow fertilizers do not have chloride-containing potassium, so growers can be confident that the low chloride levels will improve their crop health.
The 5-12-12 Super Rainbow formulation is recommended on watermelons. Not only is it a low-chlorine fertilizer, it also has more magnesium and water-soluble calcium than the 5-20-20 Super Rainbow. To keep levels of chlorine uptake down, and keep magnesium and calcium uptake levels up, Rainbow Plant Food uses chemically homogeneous ammoniated granules that ensure your watermelon crop will get consistent nutrition.
Essential nutrients for a bountiful crop
Give your watermelon the balance of nutrients it needs with Rainbow Plant Food, delivering a perfect ratio of essential minerals within each granule—no blending necessary. No blending means no chance for segregation, which, in turn, means healthier, more vibrant crops at every harvest.
For fruit and vegetable application recommendations, click here.