Richard mix, grex experiments - Melons

One of my favorite crop this year was melon.
These are some of my starting packages and some from swaps.

I do not have photos of the first generations. The “arizo” an “ananas” variety were productive, I eat a lot of them.

I have done like 9 plantings, and probably I got some 2-3 generation melons. I do not know if the 2 generation seeds made it. But these are the melons from the last planting, harvested last week, early November. Some of them look cross to me, the white melon got green stripes that did not have before, some of the charantais lost the rough skin.

This is the place that they grow, landrace style.

I think planting 5 I water a lot with sprinkles and the melons got huge. Before I only got smaller ones.

From all the melons that I ate, lets say 100, only 3 were super sweet.

One of the yellow variety the flavor was not great, but they were great producers.

Acorn one were super nice, maybe they are a cross between yellow and charantais, because I do not remember that variety. I do not know If I separated the seeds. They mature fast, flavor was nice.

I got a hold to 8-12 more varieties for next year to add to the grex. Most of them from a local shop. They are usually breed for drought resistant and long lasting.

I think I diluted to much 2-3 generation 5-9 planting from adding the 0-1 generation seeds to plant. I think I planted 30% 0 generation, 30% 1 generation seeds, and 30% 2 generation seeds.

I looking forward to next year and try to mix them more.


You are doing some of the same projects I am doing. I wish you lived in the US for seed trades.

1 Like

Excellent. I’m also a melon fan.

I love melons but can not seem to get any to grow/finish here. It is just to short season with too cold of nights. but I will keep trying variety’s till I find some seed that will.

Same thing I do in France, thanks for sharing pictures! I had some exactly like yours: white with green stripes.
I “injected” lines from turkey, meditteranean, middle east and croatia, through a greek website (, croatian one ( and an ukranian (
I will send some of these to you if you want

I had lines appear this year naturally through a cross. I haven’t grown any varieties that had green stripes, although I can’t say for sure “farthest north melon mix” evolutionary population didn’t have some in it’s ancestry. It must be a recessive trait.

Oh, yep, me too, so much genetic variety, that we could share, maybe we can wish for less strict trading.

1 Like

I would love it.

I was thinking of waiting for the serendipity package to come back to me, but I think it won’t be around before spring.

1 Like

One think that I realize from the melon seeds from swaps, they are small, mine are huge, even for smaller melons.

Interesting, what’s your theory?

My melon seeds have been all sizes when I started, but I wonder if natural selection will favour bigger seeds with direct sowing. Atleast with watermelons it seems that this years fruit had mostly larger seeds when last year there was a lot of medium sized as well. Weird thing is that I had them mostly separated so that I would sow from one fruit to a certain area. Which makes me wonder if even the medium seeds would have bigger seed traits like bigger cotyledons and then produce themself bigger seeds. I didn’t keep track of seeds size when planting so I can’t say if medium sized had only big seed offspring survive since some didn’t have any that produced. Only thing I know for sure is that some tiny seeds that I got from Spain didn’t come up after sowing even though they were pre-sprouted. Might be the temperature, but I’m suspecting that ground hardess might pose a problem for some as well. I did some digging after sowing and found at some spots there were sprouted seeds that didn’t seem to be able to penetrate the soil surface. Survival might be largely luck based, but maybe there are some that had favourable traits for that. Time will tell.

1 Like


Perhaps I select for bigger seeds or they are more viable.

1- Human selection? Probably I make seedling from the bigger seeds because I think they will do better. If I find a smaller seed I just plant two of them or ignore it.

2- Ignoring? When I save seeds from the melon, and If I see some smaller ones I just ignore them, If they are big I just get them and making sure there are in the pan to dry. If I see some smaller seed compared to the other ones I assume the seed is empty on the inside and I just ignore it.

3- Maturing? Bigger seeds have been maturing for longer, they got more fertility stored?

4- Energy stored? Bigger seed do better in the seedling stage, they got more energy to go through that phase and to better. And then produce more viable or more melons.

5- Faster? Bigger seeds sprout faster. If I have 100 seedlings in the tray, I just plant when they sprout, usually the last seedlings get more dried and stress.

What are your thoughts?

There is a lot of variability on muskmelon seed plumpness.

I have noticed honeydew being generally larger than cantaloupe.

I believe seed size correlates with better everything. So that’s why I take the time to process my seeds carefully one seed at a time. I remove deformed seeds, curved types, and smaller/thinner ones.

I hope this selects for better quality melons and melon seeds in future generations. My planting methods are not scientific at all, and therefore, I doubt I will be able to prove my claims anytime soon. Doing a A/B test on this stuff over 5 years might give the data on whether or not we should be selecting out seeds on this criteria. But I don’t know if I want to go through all of that.

I would be pretty interested to see the results of that test… but yeah, I don’t think I want to be the one to put in the effort to actually do the testing on it. At least not right now.

Just for a comparation.

From the 9 varieties on the top, only the charentais got smaller seed in the first generation. All other melon got bigger seed. Generation 2 and 3 even for orange melons got bigger seed, probably that orange melon is a cantaloupe. Maybe bigger seed is a predominant trait

I was thinking a smaller seed can have some advantages. You got more seeds in the same space. From a breeding prespective more seeds are more tries and more descendants. Or if the amount of seeds is the same but smaller, the cavity of the melon can be smaller, and you got more flesh to eat.

Maybe I can do a smaller trial of sowing seeds and let them grow to the seedling stage. Two 104 plastic tray. One with bigger seeds and the another one with smaller seeds.

1 Like

I think I rather have moderate amounts of big seeds. Having 100-200 seeds per melon, bigger size doesn’t take that much more effort and that is plenty enough seeds if you got several fruits per plant. Having several hundred or even in the thousands is a bit of a nuisence as there is just too much even if plan is to share. Big seeds should have big seedlings that are less affected by bugs. Here there aren’t specific bugs that would attack them but I have had some tiny buggars making little damage.

That’s a good idea. That should provide a data point worth reflecting on for sure. It wouldn’t give a complete picture but efficient enough to be reasonably done.

I was thinking of comparing apple seeds to lettuce seeds like 3 - 10000. Or comparing fava seeds to tomato seeds. It has more range, advantages and disadvantages are more clear.

For me, If I have to save seeds form 20 melons I have to get a lot of trays to dry. But if the seed were smaller like a tomato I can get 20 fruits in one tray.

Size might not be that helpful if you just get more of them. With small seeds there tends to be more of and you end up getting as much by weight. Drying is just a short term problem. They can be packed tighter after a few days. I’m more concerned/interested how seeds size affects growth. At the moment I don’t plan to select for it more than natural selection will do, but seed amounts I might pay more attention to. If I just find significant differences.