Growing watermelon from seed in containers

Growing watermelon from seed in containers is a fun and rewarding project. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you successfully grow watermelon in containers:

Materials and Ingredients:

  • Large container (at least 5 gallons in size)
  • High-quality potting mix
  • Watermelon seeds
  • Watering can or hose
  • Trellis or support (optional)
  • Fertilizer (balanced, water-soluble)


  1. Choose a Suitable Container:
  • Select a large container with good drainage. It should be at least 5 gallons in size to provide enough space for the watermelon roots.
  1. Select Watermelon Seeds:
  • Choose a watermelon variety that is well-suited for container gardening. Look for smaller or “bush” varieties. Common choices include “Sugar Baby” or “Bush Sugar Baby.”
  1. Prepare the Container:
  • Fill the container with high-quality potting mix. Make sure the container has drainage holes at the bottom to prevent waterlogging.
  1. Plant the Seeds:
  • Plant 3-4 watermelon seeds in the center of the container, about 1 inch deep. Watermelon seeds can be sown directly into the container, or you can start them indoors and transplant seedlings when they are a few inches tall.
  1. Watering:
  • Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Watermelon plants need regular watering, especially during hot weather. Water at the base of the plant to avoid wetting the leaves excessively.
  1. Sunlight:
  • Place the container in a location that receives full sunlight. Watermelons thrive in warm and sunny conditions.
  1. Support (Optional):
  • Consider providing support for the watermelon vines if you have limited space. You can use a trellis or create a sling to support the growing fruit.
  1. Fertilize:
  • Feed the watermelon plants with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer according to the package instructions. Fertilize when the vines start producing flowers and continue every few weeks during the growing season.
  1. Thinning:
  • If multiple seedlings germinate, thin them out, leaving only the strongest and healthiest plant.
  1. Pollination:
    • Watermelon plants require pollination for fruit development. If you’re growing in an area without natural pollinators, you may need to hand-pollinate by transferring pollen from male to female flowers using a small brush or cotton swab.
  2. Harvest:
    • Harvest the watermelon when it reaches full size, and the underside turns a creamy yellow. The tendrils near the stem may also dry up.
  3. Enjoy Your Watermelon:
    • Once harvested, cut the watermelon into slices and enjoy the delicious fruits of your labor!

Growing watermelon in containers allows you to enjoy this sweet and refreshing fruit even if you have limited garden space.

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