What Is A Cucamelon?
A Cucamelon is a small fruit that looks much like a thumb size tinyl watermelon on the outside and is completely green with tiny edible seeds on the inside. They have a texture very similar to grapes, but the outside is slightly harder giving a crunch when you take a bite.
Cucamelons taste like a cucumber with a twang. The longer they grow the more twang you taste so picking early is best about 1".
Cucamelons have many names, its scientific name being Melothria Scabra, but is better known by Mouse Melons, Mexican Sour Gherkin, and Cucamelon.
Cucamelons are a tender perennial that will come back each year blessing the grower with another harvest of these tiny mouse melons. Originally they are from Mexico where they are well known and grows in abundance.
Mouse Melons are rapid growers and give an abundance of melons from just one or two plants. They can grow an excess of 10 ft tall on their tender plants so a trellis, fencing, or cascading is advised.
Plant your seeds ¼ to ½ inch deep in rich soil after all danger of frost is over. Planting when night time temperatures are around 50 degrees. Cucamelons need full sun and thrive in summer heat but can tolerate afternoon shade.
You may plant them inside 8 weeks before last frost. Germination time is 21 days.
Fertilize Cucamelon plants once or twice during the growing season to encourage fruiting. They typically being producing 65-70 days after transplanting.
Eat Cucamelons like grapes, pickles, in pasta’s and salads.
At the end of the season in cold climates, dig out and remove the tuber to overwinter in a shed or garage. In mild winter areas, just mulch and it should come back in the Spring.
Cucamelons are a hidden gem that will give your garden a beautiful landscape, and will be the talk of the town. Cucamelons are a great snack fresh out of the garden and will be a favorite with the kiddos.