Cucamelon (Mexican Sour Gherkin)


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Cucamelon, also known as Mexican Sour Gherkin or Mouse Melon, is a delightful and unique addition to any garden, producing tiny, 1-inch-long, watermelon-lookalike fruits with a refreshing cucumber flavor and a hint of citrus. These grape-sized fruits grow on vigorous vines that can extend up to 10 feet, perfect for trellising or growing in containers. Cucamelon is considered a superfood because it is full of vitamins and minerals, antioxidants and fiber, while also low in calories. To prepare cucamelons for eating, simply wash and enjoy them fresh as a crunchy, tangy snack, or add them to salads, salsas, and pickles for a zesty twist. With their adorable appearance and excellent health benefits, cucamelons are sure to be a hit in both your garden and lifestyle.

Also Known As: Mexican Sour Gherkin, Mouse Melon, Sandita, Sandia de Rato, Mini Mexican Mini Watermelon, Mexican Sour Cucumber, Mexican Sour Cucumber, Pepquino, Watermelon Cucumber, Tiny Melon, Cuke-nut

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Plant Name:
Latin Name:
Melothria scabra 
Days to Germinate: 7-14
Days to Harvest: 70
Germination Rate: 86%
Test Date: 2/24
Growth Habit: Vining
USDA Zones: 3-12
Lifespan: Annual
Brand: TomorrowSeeds
Sunlight: Full Sun, Partial Shade
Heirloom, Open-Pollinated
Fungicide-Treated Seeds:*: No
Seeds Packed For**: 2025

*Fungicide-treated seeds protect the seedlings from diseases until they are up and growing. Do not eat treated seeds.
**Seeds are freshly packed for the growing season of the year listed. Seeds are still viable beyond pack date. Store in a cool and dry location such as the refrigerator or basement to best preserve germination rates.

Planting Instructions:


Soil Preparation:

Remove weeds, large rocks, and litter from the planting area. Leave small weeds and dead grass, they will enrich the soil when turned under. Spade the soil 8-12 inches deep and turn each shovel of soil over completely to cover the plant materials with soil. You may add fertilizer or organic matter at this point (see "Fertilizing" below). Make rows of soil beds 4-6 inches high and 4-6 feet apart. This formation of ridges will help with drainage.


Since cucamelons cannot survive frost, plant only after all danger of frost has passed and the soil begins to warm. Choose an area with full sunlight, well-drained soil, and away from tree roots. To plant, make 1 inch deep holes spaced 18 inches apart in raised beds down the rows, then plant 3-4 seeds in each hole. Cover seeds with about 1 inch of fine soil and firm the soil with the flat side of a hoe, but do not pack it. Remove extra plants after seedlings emerge. 

Cucamelon vines can reach 8 feet long or more but grow very well in containers. In large gardens, cucamelons can be spread on the ground. In small gardens, cucamelons can be trained on a fence, trellis, cage, or along a wire attached to a wall. If wire cages are used, plant along the cage or trellis. 

Planting Depth: 1 inch
Within-Row Spacing:
18 inches
Between-Row Spacing:
4-6 feet


Care During the Season:

Watering: Water the plants well about once a week if it does not rain.

Weeding: Keep cucamelon plants as weed-free as possible. When plowing or hoeing do not dig deeper than 1 inch to prevent from cutting the feeder rooters which may slow the plant's growth. 

Fertilizing: Cucamelons may optionally be fertilized. When vines are 10-12 inches long, you may optionally apply 1/2 cup of fertilizer for each 10 feet of row, or 1 tablespoon per plant. Water the plants after fertilizing. 

Insecticides: Insecticides may be used to protect plants. Bt-based insecticides and sulfur are organic options. Sulfur also has fungicidal properties and helps in controlling many diseases. Before using a pesticide, read the label and always follow cautions, warnings and directions.


Harvest Cucamelons when they are 1 to 1-1/2 inches long and oblong-shaped. Try not to wait until cucumbers turn yellow because they may be over-mature. 


Nutrition Facts:

Calories 16
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0.18 g <1%
Saturated fat 0 g 0%
Polyunsaturated fat 0 g
Monounsaturated fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Sodium 2 mg <1%
Potassium 170mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 2.95 g 1%
Dietary fiber
Protein 0.62 g 1%
Biotin 0.962 ug
3% Zinc 0.2 mg
Calcium 16mg
1% Iron <0.25
Vitamin K 24ug
20% Molybden. 0.085mg
Phosphorus 23mg
2% Magnesium 10.1
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.