Perennial communication with pepino made it possible to know (although not completely) its biological features, the technology of cultivation. But the main thing is that a perennial shrub semi-woody plant, inhabitant of the southern range, was able to adapt to our conditions and cultivate it as an annual plant in the open ground, receiving a harvest of wonderful fruits.
The agrotechnology of a new culture for us is similar to the agrotechnics of tomato, with the exception, perhaps, of preserving uterine plants in the winter period.Pepino, Melon Pear or Sweet Cucumber © Gavin Anderson
Pepino can be propagated by seed and cuttings. Seeds from grown fruit have high sowing qualities - germination and germination energy. We sow seeds at the end of January — beginning of February into a light and loose soil mixture. They are small, therefore we do not close them into the soil, but only slightly sprinkle it.
To preserve moisture, vegetation is covered with a film or glass. The optimum temperature for seed germination is 26–28 ° C. Shoots appear in 5-7 days. In the phase of two or three true leaves, the seedlings dive into pots and cups, deepening them to the cotyledons. For the prevention of black leg disease, we use steamed soil mixture or pre-spill it in the planting tanks with a solution of potassium permanganate. Picked seedlings are covered with a film (over the arcs) to maintain the humidity of the air and better survival of the seedlings. In the first month they grow very slowly and by the time they land in open ground they reach 8-10 cm in height, forming 7-8 leaves.
Now we have simplified the cultivation of seedlings. After checking the germination, seeds are sown immediately by 2-3 pieces. in cups. In them, the plants develop (without picking) before planting in open ground. To accelerate the development of seedlings helps dosledichivanie. Time is saved and the plant root system is not injured once again.
To grow pepino from seeds in a protected and open field, you should know that even under favorable conditions, not all varieties of pepino produce full-fledged seeds. Due to the splitting of varietal traits, seedlings not only bloom late, but also form heterogeneous fruits, which leads to a loss of purity of the variety.
Most reliably propagate and grow pepino rooted cuttings. To separate cuttings from overwintered plants need to start from mid-February. To do this, cut off the apical part of the shoot with 7 leaves. The bottom 2 leaves are removed, and the next 2–3 are shortened by half to reduce the evaporation of moisture. With a lack of uterine plants as the planting material, you can use the lower part of the shoot with 4-5 interstices, as well as removing and shortening the leaves.
It is best to root the cuttings in a standard cutting, if not, in a shallow container. Tightly place the cuttings in the tank should not be. There should be enough water so that the lower leaves of the cuttings do not sink into it.
Pepino cuttings root almost 100% without any stimulants. At normal room temperature (20-24 ° C), roots of 1.5-2.0 cm or more grow in large quantities in 5-7days on the cuttings. This is the most favorable time for planting the rooted cuttings in seed pots or plastic disposable cups. In the bottom of the cups you need to make several small holes to drain excess water during watering. The soil in the seedling tank should be as loose as possible, since pepino roots are sensitive to the lack of air in the substrate.Pepino, Melon Pear, or Sweet Cucumber. © andreasbalzer
Cuttings can be planted in seedling tanks without bruising in water. In this case, they need to pay more attention. The cuttings should be in moist soil and at high humidity. Rooted such cuttings within two weeks. It should be remembered that the containers with rooting cuttings, with transplanted rooted cuttings should be under the film to maintain the necessary high humidity during this period.
Soil preparation and transplanting
Pepino prefers light fertile soils with neutral acidity. The best predecessors are early harvested crops: cucumber, onion, garlic, beans. After harvesting the precursor, the soil is loosened, cleared of weeds, and, if possible, dug before the onset of cold weather.
In the spring, when the soil is ripe, loosen it to retain moisture before planting. Before planting seedlings on the site of future rows (70 cm between them), we prepare shallow trenches to double the width of the shovel and add organic fertilizers to them: after the fertilized predecessor - well-decomposed manure or compost - 3-4 kg / m2, after the non-fertilized - 6— 7 kg / m2 and ash.
We plant seedlings in open ground in early May, when the threat of recurrent frosts is past. We orient the rows from north to south; we arrange the seedlings in a staggered manner, deepening 2-3 cm lower than it grew in a container. Seedlings are planted in moist soil in the afternoon or in the evening. The distance between plants in a row is 40-50 cm. After planting, we water and mulch with dry soil. This reduces the evaporation of moisture and improves the conditions for engraftment. Depending on weather conditions, watering is repeated in 2–3 days.Pepino, Melon Pear, or Sweet Cucumber. © Maure Briggs-Carrington
In recent years, we plant seedlings on the same dates as tomatoes - in mid-April. This allows you to get ripe fruits for 2-3 weeks earlier, as well as extend the growing season and thereby increase plant productivity. To protect Pepino from possible frosts, we install a simple construction of wooden bars or reinforcing wire over the rows of planted plants and cover it with a film or spunbond. Under the film along the row of plants we put the tape drip irrigation. In such conditions, the plants survive well and start to grow. When the temperature rises on sunny days (hours), one of the sides of the shelter is lifted so that the plants are aired and hardened.
We open the pepino when stable warm weather sets in (usually May 5–10). By this time, the plants have time to settle down well, get stronger, they begin to grow intensively. Now is the time to install trellis. Along each row with an interval of 2-3 m we hammer into the soil quite strong supports (thick metal fittings, pipes, etc.) with a height of 70-80 cm. We stretch on them in three rows (18-20 cm) a single-core wire that does not sag under the weight of the fruit.
2-3 weeks after planting, we begin to form and tie up the plants. Usually we leave 2-3 well-developed escapes, the rest are removed without regret. The left shoots are tied to the lower trellis (the bottom row of the wire): the central stem is vertical, the lateral - with a slight deviation to the side.
Mandatory reception when growing pepino — pasynkovanie. The plant is very bushy and forms many stepsons. Pysynki are removed when they reach 3-5 cm in length, leaving small stumps on the stem (0.5-1.0 cm), which prevent the emergence of new stepsons in the axils of the same leaves. Plants need to pinch regularly - every week.Pepino, Melon Pear, or Sweet Cucumber. © Jade Craven
As we grow, we tie up the stems to the higher located trellis. An unconnected plant without a pinching under the weight of its mass wilts and falls on the ground, the stems take root and practically do not bear fruit.
Gathering and dressing to the trellis allow plants to efficiently use the radiant energy of the sun. Fruits are not tied to the trellis, long and sturdy flower stalks allow you to simply hang them on the trellis.
During the vegetation period, plants often have an overturning - unmarked stepchildren overtake the apical shoot in growth and grow 1-2 knots before the next inflorescence. Leaving them one by one on the stem, an additional stem can be formed, prolonging the fruiting of the plant.
Further care for the plants is usual: loosening the soil in rows and between rows, removing weeds, regular watering, fertilizing, destruction of pests and pathogens. We carry out the first top dressing after the seedlings take root. Use the infusion of mullein (1:10) or bird droppings (1:20). The second time we feed the plants during the formation of the fruit indicated infusions or infusion of green fertilizer (1:20). After feeding the plants we water. Caught on the leaves of the solution immediately wash off with water.
We do not use mineral fertilizers. If necessary, you can use mineral supplements (10 g of ammonium nitrate, 15 g of superphosphate and potassium sulfate per 10 liters of water) during the flowering period and at the beginning of abundant fruiting.Pepino, Melon Pear, or Sweet Cucumber. © Dezidor
Pest and disease protection
The complex of pests and diseases with extremely limited cultivation of pepino has not yet formed. Only certain types of pests have found a new forage plant, causing him harm. Among them are the Colorado potato beetle, spider mite, aphid (melon, green peach), whitefly.
Pepino and diseases are striking: the black-leg “mows down” shoots; when the soil becomes wet, root bacterial rot develops; in the second half of the growing season, if favorable conditions develop for the development of the causative agent, the phytophtora may appear.
Plants are sensitive to solanaceous viruses. There are isolated cases of infection with a leaf bronze virus - the affected leaves with a bronze tint turn black and curl. The plant is noticeably lagging behind in growth and does not form normally developed fruits. To prevent re-infection of other plants with sucking pests (aphids, cycadns), such a bush should be removed.
Registered drugs for the destruction of pests when growing pepino in Ukraine is not. If necessary, you can use insecticides and fungicides recommended for protection against pests and diseases of tomato, eggplant, belonging to the same biological group with pepino (family solanaceous). Experts note the increased sensitivity of pepino to some drugs and consumption rates acceptable to other vegetable solanaceous crops. Therefore, it is advisable to first treat one stem of the plant with a preparation with the recommended consumption rate to ensure that the working solution is not toxic.
It is necessary to protect pepino from pests not only in summer in open ground, but also mother plants wintering in the room. It is possible to limit the development of spider mites, whitefly, and aphids on plants during the winter period by treating insecticides when preparing and transplanting mother plants for wintering. Use the recommended drugs to destroy these pests on tomatoes and eggplants. It is possible with the compatibility of drugs treatment with a mixture of insecticide (to kill aphids and whitefly) and acaricide (to kill spider mites). But this must be done before the plants are transferred to the living room, so that unpleasant and harmful evaporations of the preparations from the plants and the soil are eliminated.Pepino, Melon Pear, or Sweet Cucumber. © Carlos Vieira
In winter, if there is a need for treatment against pests, it is best to use decoctions or infusions of phytocidal plants (marigold, tobacco, tobacco, yarrow, onion peel, garlic), which need to be prepared in the summer. Spray the plants with infusions and decoctions in 5-7 days.
If there are no phytoncidal plants, but there is a need to get rid of pests, the treatment is carried out by an atellic, 500 EC, e. (2 ml per 1 l of water) or konfidor, c. R. to. (2-2.5 ml per 1 l of water) in a separate room, observing all safety measures. After drying, the plants are brought into the living room.
Preparation of uterine plants
The fruits are still ripening on the plants, and you should already take care of growing the uterine material for the next season. Mother cages begin to grow from the stepsons of plants in mid-August so that by the end of the growing season they will have a well-developed root system.
By overwintering plants can be prepared in different ways:
- Grow young plants from stepsons, rooted in June-July. The main stems are shortened, leaving only a few lower stepsons. The root system in plants has already formed, it is not exhausted by fruiting. With proper care, the plants safely endure the winter period.
- Grow plants from stepchildren in the second half of August. In September, when the cold snap falls in the fall, the nomads, grown in September, do not have time to form into a stronger plant.
Pysynki better to sit down to the mother plants, where they will be protected from hot rays and provided with moisture.
- Grow plants from stepchildren rooted escape. To do this, you need to leave one shoot of the lower tier on the bush, give it the opportunity to grow, then tilt it and pin it to the soil. In contact with wet soil on the shoot more than a dozen stepchildren grow and they are already with the root system. It remains to cut the stem and plant the finished plants.
Before planting, 1 - 2 lower leaflets are cut and planted in a container, a little deeper than the leaves, so as to form additional roots. On the above-ground part of the stepson, leave 5–7 leaves, from the vaginas of which new shoots will grow, forming a compact plant.
Preservation of uterine plants
Plants prepared for wintering, at the end of September with a decrease in temperature at night to 14–15 ° C, we dig out with a clod of earth, without damaging the root system. We place in the container corresponding to the volume of the dug out coma. At the bottom of the container pour claydite for drainage and a layer of prepared soil mixture. In the bottom of the container we make drainage holes for irrigation water.
Transplanted plants for a few days leave on the street, so that they are better acclimatized. Growth processes in pepino are suspended at a temperature of 12–13 ° C. Therefore, the plants in time we bring in the room. We place them on the window-sills of windows of southern orientation and take care of them as usual houseplants.
Plants exposed to the north side, in frosty periods, when the temperature in the room drops below 10–12 ° C (taking into account the proximity of the leaves to the window frame) can drop the leaves. When the temperature rises, after 2-3 weeks leaves grow again on the shoots, the stepchildren grow from their sinuses, and by the beginning of April they can be rooted for reproduction. The plants respond with gratitude to the backlighting, they noticeably grow, the leaves become more intense in color. If desired, overwintered plants can continue to grow indoors (balcony, loggia), transplanted into a large container.Pepino, Melon Pear or Sweet Cucumber. © Leo_Breman
When uterine plants are harvested in larger quantities than can be placed in residential premises, the plant itself helps to solve the storage problem, its biological feature is a tendency toward a rest period inherent in tree crops and shrubs.
Uterine plants can be stored in a lit and dark rooms. Preparation for the storage of plants is as follows: watering and feeding the plants is gradually minimized, the temperature is reduced to 5-6 ° C over a period of 3-4 weeks. Exchange and growth processes slow down, the plant sheds leaves.
Humidity of the air to prevent the development of fungal diseases should be low, ventilation is good, and watering at a level that does not dry the roots. Under such conditions, the dormant period lasts up to 1.5–2 months (December — January).
With the onset of favorable light conditions, the plants are transferred to a bright room, watered with warm water, fed and grown until mid-April, when it is time to take root for the grown shoots and stepsons.
Pepino: a description of a melon pear
At home, you can grow a fruitful bush. On the branches of the plant ripen pear-shaped fruits. In greenhouse conditions, perennial reaches 1 m in height. Leaves grow large, acquire oval contours. Their length is about 15 cm.The plant itself is a lignified perennial up to a meter high.. Despite the pronounced fruity taste of the fruit, this plant is from the family of Solanaceae, to which belong peppers, eggplants and tomatoes.
Therefore, the leaves are similar to large oval pepper leaves, inflorescences - on the small color of potatoes (about 20 pieces on one branch). To taste, the fruits have absorbed all the sweetness of a ripe melon with a banana note in the aroma.
In the process of ripening, the fruits acquire yellow or cream peel, decorated with longitudinal lilac, brown, gray or green stripes. The average fruit of homemade pepino in a pot varies in weight from 200 to 700 g.
The cut fruit has honey-yellow or brown flesh with a pink sheen. Melon pear has unprecedented juiciness. The botanically forming fruits are real berries.
Two varieties are most common in our area: "Ramses" and "Consuelo".
The first has the following properties:
- excellent resistance to external factors
- хорошая плодоносность,
- раннее дозревание грушевидных плодов желто-оранжевого цвета с перечным оттенком.
«Консуэло» имеет более приближенный вкус к дынному. Ярко-желтые груши вырастают с сиреневыми полосками. Но этот сорт плохо выдерживает перепады температуры и влажности воздуха. Both varieties are adapted for growing indoors.
When the fruits ripen, they become yellow or cream, have longitudinal purple, brown, gray or green stripes. Fruit weight - from 200 to 700 g. Honey-yellow or pinkish-brown flesh is very juicy, has a delicate sweet-sour taste.
Solanaceae is a storehouse of vitamins C, B1, PP, carotene, iron, pectin. Before eating fruits, it is desirable to clean the outer skin.
Necessary conditions for growing pepino in the house
Breeders count about 25 varieties of this plant. For growing on a home window sill you need to create optimal conditions for the growth and development of pepino:
- provide a high level of humidity,
- monitor the moderation of temperature at different times of the day.
Growing this unusual fruit can turn into a real experiment. The plant is much better fruit in a cool environment. But at the same time there is a risk that the fruits will not ripen and lose weight.
Lighting for growing pepino in a pot
In pepino, after a week or two, when grown at home, roots appear from seeds. At this time, a vessel with planting material is placed under the usual light bulb for around-the-clock lighting before the formation of cotyledons.
A month later, the light feed is gradually reduced to 14 hours a day. Closer to the beginning of spring, the plant is transferred to the usual light regime of the day, without the use of lighting.
Air humidity and temperature
The most optimal humidity conditions for upset stepchildren are up to 90%. This indicator can be provided in a greenhouse or in a pot under a film, glass or plastic cap.
It is very useful to conduct airing of the room.. This will not only contribute to better pollination of the growing bush, but will save plants from disease.
"Melon cucumbers" prefer a light fertile soil with a neutral level of acidity. Choose a light, moisture and breathable substrate without an excess of nitrogen for planting seedlings in home pots.
Experts recommend treating the soil with a fungicide before the picking procedure.
How to plant pepino at home
In our climate zone it does not always come out to get high-quality seeds.. Often they are immature. Experienced gardeners say that pepino, when grown from seeds, bears fruit later than sprouts from cuttings at home. If the cuttings are planted at the end of winter, then at the end of summer you can get the first ripe pears with melon flavor.
Planting pepino seeds
Seeds are sown at the end of the autumn season. Then, before the first spring heat, the sprout is already strong and will be ready for the ovary of the first fruits. Seeds germinate poorly in the ground. For germination, it is better to put them on wet toilet paper or tobacco paper, which has the best water-holding properties.
Planting material on a paper sheet is placed in a shallow ceramic or plastic container to avoid the rapid evaporation of moisture. For germination use Petri dishes or small dishes with lids. Instead of paper, you can use cosmetic cotton pads.
The vessel is covered with a usual transparent film or package. Ceramic bowl covered with glass. Then it is put in a dark place until the first shoots. Paper or equivalent moistened with water every three days. As soon as the first seeds are hatched, it is possible to transfer the container to a bright place (temperature conditions are not lower than + 24 ... + 26 ° C. Seedlings dive only after full opening of the cotyledons.
Experienced gardeners know the secrets of how to grow a fruitful pepino shrub from seeds extracted from a mature fruit. It is important to ensure that the “pear” is not plucked in its immature form - there remains a risk that the seeds will not sprout. In order to avoid such a risk, it is better to purchase ready-made planting material at a garden store. When buying, they prefer seeds of the correct round shape and light shades of the structure.
Vegetative reproduction of pepino gained its popularity due to more intensive growth of young shoots. Breeding seedlings pepino causes a lot of difficulties. It is much easier to root stepchildren.
"Kids" on the third day let out small roots. Pyschopes from the uterine pepino rooted in peat soil in February. Monthly seedlings stalls store all identifying traits of a particular variety. They bloom and bear fruit, ahead of time seedlings of seeds.
At the end of February, the stepsons are carefully separated and planted in light ground. You should immediately prepare yourself for the fact that the melon bush of pepino melon pear will grow slowly even with all the rules of cultivation.
How to care for homemade pepino
Placed pots with light-loving bushes on the window sills of the southern windows of an apartment or house. Beware of abundant watering. It is important to maintain the desired temperature during the day and at night. When supercooling, the plant can shed its ovaries of future pear-shaped fruits.
The plant develops especially large inflorescences. From time to time, they may break without sustaining their own weight. It should be time to tie the buds of pepino to the upstream node of the stem in the pot - this is one of the key procedures in the care.
How to fertilize melon pear
Under digging make previously harvested rotted mullein (1:10) and mineral fertilizers. 7 days after the disembarkation of the bushes, the above-ground part of the plant is fed with a solution rich in microelements:
Pepino bush formation
For the formation of a beautiful crown adhere to the following rules:
- With a strong growth of bushes, their basis is tied to wooden or plastic supports.
- A highly flowering plant requires periodic removal of the “stepsons”. If this is not done, the fruits will be formed with some delay.
- For giving to a magnificent crone accuracy use a cutting. The best option for trimming a bush is to fit it under the shape of a tree.
For an adult petain bush, the loss of several mature leaves will not cause damage, but on the contrary - will contribute to a good insolation. Interestingly, New Zealand, Australian and Californian scientists derive new varieties of this berry in modern laboratory conditions. This helps them learn better how to grow attractive pepino fruit for supply to other countries.
The main diseases and pests in the pot pepino
Domestic breeders until this time did not derive a complete classification of pests and diseases for this rare plant. In many countries, pepino remains a mystery to the local population: many residents do not even know what it is.
Our summer residents have identified certain types of pests that affect uterine specimens in the winter:
- spider mite,
- Aphid green peach or melon.
Compatible in composition means you can prepare a universal solution for the destruction of the above pests. It is important to schedule such a procedure before moving the potted bushes into the room. The preparations have a not very pleasant smell, which is preserved for a long time on the branches and stem of the bush and the top layer of soil.
Optimal analogue - fitootvary or infusions based on marigolds, yarrow, tobacco, tobacco, onion peel, garlic. Natural home remedies for the destruction of pests harvest in the summer. Spray the plants at intervals of 5-7 days.
The greatest danger to planted specimens in home pots is the defeat of the black leg. It occurs due to improper watering. Overmoistened soil is a favorite medium for bacteria that cause rotting of the root system of flowerpots and ornamental crops. Also homemade Solanum muricatum suffer from fungal phytophthora.
Plantings in pots are influenced by certain viruses characteristic of melon pears and other types of nightshade. In rare cases, leaves are affected by bronze bloom. In addition to the harm done to the green part, the virus does not allow pepino to develop its fruit normally. It is important to neutralize the infected shrub in time during the cultivation of pepino so that other neighboring plants are not infected at home.
Harvesting homemade pepino
The fruits ripen in a two-month period after the formation of inflorescences. Ripening, they acquire softness. Immature "melon berries" dope in a bright room at room temperature and even on the shelf of the refrigerator.
Ripe fruits have amazing tonic and refreshing properties, quickly quench thirst. If you are late in harvesting pepino, you will surely find out what kind of cunning plant it is. Overripe berries will not please you with the expected aroma and completely lose their taste.
In autumn, a shrub with unripe berries should be transplanted into a larger pot and grown in a greenhouse for additional harvesting from November to the New Year. Pepino without fail provide conditions of rest if the bush has otklodonosil. The stem with the crown of the plant is cut into three quarters and placed in a dark, cool and well-ventilated room for 2 months. The optimal temperature indicator is + 5 ... + 10 degrees. It is important to prevent excessive air dryness. After a period of time, homemade pear-shaped melons are transplanted into pots with loose soil.
Following these tips, you can easily grow an exotic fruit yourself and please yourself and loved ones with the unexpected taste of its juicy flesh, even in harsh winter.
Pepino is an evergreen low shrub. It bears bright and juicy fruits, the shape of which resembles a pear. The taste of pepino resembles a sweet melon, a slight taste of pineapple or mango is felt. The consistency of the fruit pulp is more like a melon.
Pepino is 90% water, so it is recommended to include it in the diet menu. You can make various preparations from the fruits of melon pears: jam, compotes, mashed potatoes, or used raw. In addition, pepino perfectly amenable to drying and freezing, while valuable nutritional properties are preserved.
Before eating, it is advisable to peel the vegetable, as it has a bitter taste. But the seeds do not need to be removed. Fruits of melon pears are well stored and easily tolerate transportation. In America, pepino is grown for trade.
By type of growth, pepino looks more like a tomato or pepper. It is a shrub that grows strictly upwards and can form several stems. It develops quite quickly, needs support. Five months after the rooting of the cuttings, the plant blooms and sets fruit.
How to grow pepino in Russia
Don't forget that Pepino is from South America. Under the conditions of the harsh Russian winters, the shrub is grown as a tub plant. A melon pear can withstand a short-term drop in temperature to -5 degrees, but it will not tolerate frost sustainability.
Growing pepino and caring for shrubs will require certain skills. It is best to propagate the melon pear by cutting, which allows you to increase the yield of the plant. When sowing seeds of pepino, the nutritional value of fruits is lost, they turn out to be less juicy and useful, and the yield is sharply reduced.
In addition, pepino is demanding for irrigation and irrigation, although it can withstand short-term drought. Under adverse conditions, the shrub suspends growth and sheds leaves.
Growing pepino from cuttings
For vegetative propagation of pepino need cuttingscan be rooted stepchildren plants. They retain varietal characteristics, rooted easily, seedlings bloom earlier.
In order to grow pepino every year independently, it is necessary to have a mother bush. The selected healthy plant is transplanted into the tub in the fall and brought into the house. The shoots of the shrub are shortened by about a third of the length, watering is reduced. The room temperature should be at least 8 degrees.
In early spring, the pot is transferred to a room with a temperature of up to 16 degrees, gradually increase the watering and make feeding. When shoots appear, they are cut and rooted in a light substrate. During this period, the cuttings need a humid environment, so the container with the cuttings is covered with a bag or placed in a greenhouse.
Planting cuttings of pepino in the greenhouse
The earlier the seedlings are planted in the ground, the sooner the shrub will begin to bear fruit. The landing is carried out according to the following rules.
- On 1 square. meter have up to 3 plants.
- Soil temperature should not be below +20 degrees.
- The air temperature in the greenhouse should not fall below 22-25 degrees during the day and 18 at night.
Before planting seedlings in the ground, it should be prepared. Cucumber, onion, beans or garlic are good precursors of pepino. The beds are loosened and dug up since the fall.
Pepino is planted in trenches whose depth is up to 25 cm. The distance between the rows is about 7 cm. In the spring, fertilizers are applied to the beds:
- rotted manure - 3-4 kg / 1 sq. m. m,
- mature compost - 4-5 kg / 1 sq. m,
Pepino seedlings are planted in a staggered manner, deepening a few centimeters. After planting, the pepino water and mulch the soil well, which helps to keep the soil moisture. Pepino seedling survives very well, under favorable conditions, the indicators are 100%.
When the plants adapt, trellises are installed along the rows so that the shoots of the shrub are not broken by the severity of the fruit.
After 2-3 weeks you can begin to form a shrub. We leave only 2 stalks, remove all the extra shoots and stepchildren. They significantly reduce the yield of the plant.
Pepino bushes heavily, stepchildren break out every three days, leaving small peneces in the sinuses. Such a technique does not allow new stepchildren to form in the same sinuses.
How to care for pepino
All care for shrubs comes down to the main actions:
- regular loosening of the soil, which increases soil aeration,
- weed removal
- regular watering and spraying,
- top dressing
- spraying against pests and diseases.
Water pepino every few days, letting the soil dry out between watering. Top dressings allow to achieve plentiful fruiting.
The first time additional food is made in 10-12 days after transplanting to the ground. It is best to use a solution of mullein or bird droppings at this stage. Feeding is carried out on wet soil. If the solution gets on the tender leaves, then it should be washed off.
The second time pepino feed after flowering, when fruit are tied. Use infusion of green fertilizers.
The third dressing falls on the period of abundant fruiting. It is best to use mineral fertilizers:
- ammonium nitrate - 15 gr,
- superphosphate - 10 gr,
- potassium sulfate - 15 gr.
All components are mixed and dissolved in 10 liters of water. Carry top dressing in the evening or early in the morning after watering.
Pest and disease control
Pepino relatively recently appeared on our beds, but shrubs have already been chosen by pests. The most common ones are:
- Colorado beetle,
- spider mite,
In addition, pepino is affected by diseases such as late blight and bacterial rot. There are no specially developed preparations for pepino. To combat diseases and pests apply complex fungicides and insecticides, which are recommended for tomatoes, peppers and eggplants.
Protect from pests and diseases not only need planting pepino, but also uterine plants. In winter, it is better to use infusions of tobacco, horsetail, marigold, wormwood, or onion peel to fight diseases and pests. Spraying is carried out several times with an interval of 5 days.
Pepino fruit ripening
Depending on the method of cultivation, the melon pear pleases with fruits twice a year: in the fall and in the spring. If you grow a shrub in the greenhouse, then fruit picking occurs in August - September.
Pepino fruits ripen 2.5 months. Mature vegetable is soft, its color changes to cream or light yellow, dark characteristic bands are visible on the skin. Pepino fruits can be harvested immature, they are able to reach the store or in the refrigerator. But here it is not worth delaying with cleaning. Overripe fruit loses its taste, poorly stored.
If you follow all the rules of care, the cultivation of pepino does not cause much trouble. It is important to remember that the shrub needs sunlight, fertilizing, watering and loose soil. Cutting a tub plant at any time of the year.
Pepino has a lot of names: Quechua, Aymara, mango cucumber, Peruvian cucumber, sweet cucumber, pear melon, melon bush, or melon tree. The fruits of the plant have a pleasant taste and are widely used in cooking. The people of South America and Japan use pepino as a dessert. New Zealand residents use pepino for cooking vegetable soups, as well as sauces for meat, fish and other seafood. In addition, pepino fruits are part of a variety of fruit and vegetable salads. Плоды можно консервировать, сушить или замораживать.
Когда плоды вырастут размером с гусиное яйцо и станут бледно-желтого или кремового цвета их осторожно срывают с веток. Средняя масса плодов достигает 1300 гр. The pulp of ripe fruit is honey-yellow, juicy, aromatic.
Pepino fruits contain iron, vitamins A, C, B1, B2, PP and pectic substances. The content of vitamin C fruit pepino not inferior to citrus. Leave ripe fruit on the tree is not recommended, as they quickly lose their taste properties. Fruits on a plant ripen at the same time, therefore it is necessary to pick them off as they mature.
During the period vegetation, flowering and fruit ripening air temperature must be maintained at + 20–25 ° C.
AT flowering period air temperature must be maintained at a level not lower than + 18 ° C. Prolonged exposure to lower temperatures may result in the flowers falling off. Soil temperature should not fall below + 20 ° C. Also, pepino develops better and actively sets fruit in a room that is systematically aired.
In the period of flowering on a sunny day, the plant should be slightly shaken. This helps pollen to more actively fall off, falling on the stigma of the pistil.
Description: varieties and varieties of pepino. Combination with other plants
Pepino is quite a popular fruit in the world. The perennial plant, which belongs to the Solanaceae family, is a relative of eggplant, tomato and potato. There are about 25 melon pear varieties. Two are adapted to the climate of the middle lane: Ramses and Consuelo. Their differences are easy to find and identify by photo.
This tropical culture does not overwinter in the open field in a midland setting. In areas with a mild climate, it can be grown in a garden format. But the experience of local gardeners shows: the harvest in the open field is poor. General characteristics of different varieties of melon pears:
- The bush reaches a height of 1.5 m.
- Stem semi-woody.
- The plant is densely covered with large long leaves. Externally, it resembles pepper or tomato bush.
- The size, shape and color of the fruit depends on the variety. Weight - 80-750 g. Form - spherical or oval. Color - with shades of cream, purple, bright yellow or orange, with longitudinal stripes-strokes.
- The pulp of different varieties in ripe form is always white or yellowish translucent. The taste is sweet and sour.
Fruiting perennial depends on the timing of planting. In the middle lane, the plant sets fruit for almost the entire spring, until the second half of May, or from late August to mid-autumn. The first fruits ripen on the branches about 2.5-3 months. Fruiting lasts 1-2 months. You can harvest up to 8 kg of crop from a bush.
Melon pear looks pretty impressive. She can trudge on the support. Therefore, the plant is sometimes used for cultivation in the open field with a decorative purpose. Beautiful leaves and flowers of pepino look good in combination with garden greens and decorate resting places, a gazebo.
Pepino: planting a plant. Care, fertilizer and fertilizing culture
In order for planting and reproduction of a melon pear to pass normally, first of all prepare a greenhouse. Requirements:
- stable temperature around +23 ° C,
- air humidity at 75-80%,
- lack of drafts and strong wind.
The soil should be clean and loose. Pre-fertilizer compost in the calculation of about 4 kg / sq. m. Work is best done in the evening:
- make shallow rows at a distance of 70 cm from each other,
- staggered deepen the melon pear seedlings, leaving at least 50 cm between the bushes,
- water the seedlings again
- make mulch from dry ground.
Growing pepino like pepper care in the open field:
Feeding pepino carried out with the help of organic fertilizers. Well works solution of mullein in a ratio of 1:10, made:
- immediately after the rooting of the seedlings, when the bush is actively growing,
- during the formation of the fruit.
Tip Fertilization is effective only in combination with the subsequent irrigation.
Melon pear diseases and pests
Common diseases of pepino are easily identified by photo:
- root rot,
- bronze leaves.
With all the diseases, except the last, you can fight with the help of special means for tomatoes or eggplants. In order not to accidentally destroy the whole plant, try a specific tool on a small process. When blackening and twisting the leaf plates (a sign of bronze leaves), the bush should be removed from the bed and destroyed. The melon pear can also be struck by the Colorado potato beetle, spider mite, aphid and whitefly - typical pests for solanaceous birds. Ecological folk care products can be an alternative to chemicals. For example, sprinkle a bed of decoction of onion peel, yarrow, garlic. The procedure should be repeated once a week.
Pepino: plant reproduction
Some gardeners are advised to begin work on seed propagation in the first days of February, others - in November-December. You can get the material yourself by washing it from the pulp of a ripe fruit, or buy it in a store:
- Seeds are germinated in light, loose and nutritious soil. Well proven substrate for tomato seedlings. Spill it with a solution of potassium permanganate or foundationol.
- A few days before planting, wrap the seeds in a damp cloth. Place in a dark place at a temperature of at least +28 ° C.
- After the seeds hatch, plant them in a pot with soil. Sprinkle on the surface and sprinkle with a thin layer of the same soil. Cover the container with film or glass.
- Seed care during this period consists only in maintaining a constant temperature of about + 26 ... + 28 ° C.
- Seedlings should appear in about 7-10 days. Clean the greenhouse. Continue to control the temperature and lightly water.
- A pair of leaves appeared - dive the strongest sprouts into separate pots. The soil is the same. Cover them with film again.
Attention! After planting in separate containers, Pepino seedlings temporarily slow down the pace of development.
After the picking, the sprouts need additional lighting. With the February planting - 2-3 hours a day until mid-spring. When disembarking in the fall - around the clock in the first week, 16 and 14 hours in the next 2 months. When the sprouts reach 10 cm in height and release 8-9 full-fledged leaves, they are transplanted into the ground at a permanent place.
Propagation by cutting is considered a more reliable way. In February, cut from the shoots parts with 7-8 leaves. Remove a couple of lower leaf plates, cut another 3-4 by half. Place the twig in the water so that the leaves do not touch it. For 2 weeks, the cuttings will release the roots of the desired length, after which they can be transplanted into the ground. The care of the process is similar to the seedling method of reproduction.
Pepino has limited vitality in a midland climate. But you can certainly surprise friends and relatives with the exotic taste of the fruit.