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True Charentais Melon (Heirloom, 80 Days)

A true, traditional Charentais melon is surprisingly hard to find. The oval fruit have a smooth gray exterior with dark gray sutures. The flesh is a lovely, fragrant, delicious bright orange. Plants are medium size and the melons run to 2 pounds. Fruit should be harvested when the skin turns from green to gray for the best flavor. 

15 seeds


Cucumis melo

Germination: 4-10 days

Germination Temperature: Optimum soil temperatures 70-85ºF

Seed Sowing Depth: 1/2" deep

Sowing Indoors: 3-4 weeks before last frost. Provide 70-85ºF soil temperature. Sow 2-3 seeds per cell/pot. Sowing into individual biodegradable peat/cow pots reduces root damage when transplanting. Transplant after last frost, 36" apart.

Sowing Outdoors:  Sow after last frost when soil temperature is over 70ºF. Sow 2-3 seeds every 36", thin to the strongest seedling. 

How much does a packet plant: 18-20 foot single row, 5-6 hills

Harvest: Look for the following signs as it does take some practice on telling when they are ready to harvest. The skin tone changes and netting becomes heavy, the ends soften, they will slip from the vines or a gentle tug will pull it away from the vine, a crack develops around the stem, the closet tendril to the stem dries, and the aroma increases when ripe.

Tips:  Plant in fertile soil, amended with compost or well rotted manure and keep well watered. They benefit from growing on black plastic and by using row covers for weed, insect control, and more rapid growth. 

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Marty G.
I recommend this product

Delicious but hard to tell when it's ripe

I have grown these for 2 years now. If you get them at the right time, they are very sweet. For me, it's hard to tell when they are ripe. I have also grown Minnesota Midgets for many years, and they turn the classic gold/yellow and I have missed the moment with these melons before! I do recommend them, and will grow them again. Like the description says, watch for the transition from green to grey. Then they are at their peak. For me in Ohio, they are the last melons to ripen, and have been smaller than described.

Christine z.


I had a volunteer come up in my south-southeast flower bed. I let it vine up the iron trellis work with the clematis. About 5-5 hours sun. Great big melon and very flavorful. Don't wait for the rind to turn yellow. Support fruit with an old nylon if trellising. Can't wait to grow it again.