Muskmelon (Cucumis Melo) variety trial for Rhode Island growers

Joe Manetta


In this study we compared 20 different varieties of muskmelons, Cucumis melo, based on their sugar content, flavor profile, and quantity of fruit produced. The seeds were sown in early May and then transplanted two weeks later into beds prepared with black plastic mulch which had previously been amended with 14-24-12 fertilizer, KNO3, urea. Buffer plants were planted on the outside of the experimental rows to decrease prevalence of cucumber beetle (Acalymma vittatum) damage. Seedlings were placed under hoops with plastic mesh to increase ambient temperature. The plants were watered and fertilized as needed. Harvests began in late July and continued until mid-August. Fruits were weighted and counted when harvested to record quantity. To measure fruit quality, we used brix measurement, and tasting. We found “Sensation” to be the best performer based on quality, and one on the best based on quantity.