Melons are a favorite summer snack. Watermelon, Cantaloupe, and Honeydew melons are amongst the most popular melons.
But can you compost melons? Yes, you can compost melons, including the rinds. The flesh rots down exceptionally quickly, and while the rinds take a bit longer, chopping them up will speed up the process. Melons are a good source of moisture and nitrogen, as well as other trace minerals like phosphorous.
How to compost melons
Here are some tips to get the most out of composting melons.
Add some browns in with the melon
Melons are mostly water. Watermelons and cantaloupe melons are both over 90% water. This is one of the reasons they rot down so quickly, but composting too much moisture can cause problems in your compost pile, such as lack of oxygen.
If your compost pile already looks quite wet, then adding some brown materials like dry leaves, twigs, or shredded paper along with the melons will help soak up any excess moisture. This should prevent the pile from becoming too wet. If you think your pile is running too dry, then melons will help fix this.
Can you compost melon seeds?
No, it’s best not to compost melon seeds. Seeds can survive in a passive composting pile. It’s a good idea to remove the seeds before you compost the melon unless you have a hot compost pile. If you don’t, then you run the risk of the seeds germinating when you spread the compost.
In a hot compost pile, the seeds won’t survive so there’s no need to remove them.
If you’re struggling to get your compost pile hot enough, don’t forget to read our guide on 9 ways to heat up your compost. It’s full of actionable and quick tips.
Can you compost melon rinds?
Rinds from watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew melons are a great addition to any compost pile. If you add a whole melon rind, it will be quite slow to decompose, so it’s best to chop it up before you compost it. The smaller your compost pile, the smaller you should make the rinds.
Can worms eat melons?
Melons are one of composting worms’ favorite food and you can absolutely add them to your worm bin. The worms will eat both the flesh and the rinds of all types of melons extremely quickly, especially if you chop it up into manageable pieces.
Check out this incredible time lapse of worms eating a whole melon.
Worms love moisture, which is one of the reasons they like melons so much. But you do need to be careful not to overload the bin and make it too wet. If there’s too much moisture in the bin, the worms will start trying to escape. To prevent this, add in some extra cardboard to help absorb the moisture.
Worms will migrate to melons so quickly that people often use them when they want to harvest the worm castings. If you place the melon at the top of the bin, the worms will migrate there within a few days leaving the bottom of the bin worm-free and easy to harvest.
What else can you do with melon rinds?
If you’re a fan of birds in your yard, then you can leave the rinds out as a snack for the birds. They’ll pick off any leftover fruit, and once they’re done eating it, you can put the rinds in your compost pile.
You can also eat the rinds yourself! According to Healthline, watermelon rinds are full of fiber and have a number of nutritious benefits. You can blend them up to have in a smoothie, pickle the rinds to have as a snack or slice them thinly to fry in a stir fry.