UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA
University of California
UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA


Garden Help > Vegetables

UC Links

How to grow: Watermelon, UC Davis Vegetable Research and Information Center

Pest management: Watermelon cultural tips, pests, and diseases

The Basics

When to plant

  • Transplant or direct seed: May–June
  • For best results, wait until daytime temperatures are regularly over 75 degrees and soil temperature is over 70 degrees
  • Start in pots for transplants: April–May; ready to transplant in 4 weeks

Harvest window:  July-October, depending on variety.

Care overview

  • Vines need plenty of room in full sun.
  • Use floating row covers to protect seedlings and transplants from cool air temperatures and early insect pests. Remove the covers when plants start to blossom.
  • Encourage bees with companion flower planting or consider hand pollinating female flowers.

More links

 Recommended Varieties for Santa Clara County*

Sweet Siberian  Red flesh, and dark green seeds. 83 days. Very prolific.

Osh Kirgizia

Russian variety with sweet pink-red flesh. Weight from 10 to 15 lbs, round shape, pink flesh, small brown seeds, some reddish. 95 days.


Large 20 to 30 lb oblong fruit, very sweet crisp and flavorful with deep orange flesh. The rind is light-green with jagged dark green strips. Harvest period was 105 to 150 days from seeding.

Other recommended varieties: Charleston Gray, Moon & Stars

* Many other varieties may also do well here in Santa Clara County. This list is based on UC Master Gardener trials, taste tests, and feedback from local growers.

Webmaster Email: webmaster-mgsantaclara@ucanr.edu