We have a healthy rockmelon vine with both male and female flowers. With the absence of bees, we have been hand-pollinating religiously every morning. (Gently removing the petals from the male flower, etc.)We could not understand why the tiny rockmelons were turning yellow and dropping off. We investigated the male flowers under a magnifying glass to discover there was absolutely no pollen, not even a tiny bit. What could be the cause of this do you think?
01 January 2014 07:32 AM
The reason why your tiny rockmelons are falling is because they are not adequately pollinated and is linked to the lack of bees, pollen and environmental conditions. The lack of pollen in your male flowers, according to the website attached below is due to weather. It states "in windy, dry conditions pollen rapidly dries out and fruit set is usually poor while those conditions prevail." This seems to correspond well with conditions experienced in Sydney this spring and summer. The Rockmelon and Honeydew Information Kit www.deedi.qld.gov.au offers some great information about growing rockmelons.