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Annual BiennialConservatory GreenhouseFruit EdibleHerbaceous Perennial

Melothria scabra

cucamelon

Melothria scabra is a fast-growing herbaceous perennial climber, usually grown as an annual, 2.5-3m high, with double-spiralled tendrils, rough-textured green leaves, 3-7cm long with three or five lobes, small yellow flowers about 4mm across in summer, and olive-shaped fruits which are usually about 2.5cm but up to 4cm long and dark green with bands of pale green mottling, in late summer and early autumn; the fruits are edible with an acidic cucumber taste and crunchy texture

Other common names
mouse melon
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Size
Ultimate height
2.5–4 metres
Time to ultimate height
1 year
Ultimate spread
1–1.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Yellow Green Green
Autumn Green Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

West–facing or South–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H1C
Botanical details
Family
Cucurbitaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Climbing
Name status

Correct

Plant range
Mexico

How to grow

Cultivation

Sow seeds in spring and keep at 22-24°C until germination, grow on at 18-21°C or plant out in moist but well-drained soil in a sunny, sheltered position once all risk of frost has passed, and provide support such as netting; roots may be lifted and stored overwinter in just-moist compost in a frost-free place and re-planted the following spring

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown at 22-24°C in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Patio and container plants
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Wall side borders
Pruning

No pruning needed

Pests

Generally pest-free

Diseases

Generally disease-free

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