When trimming a watermelon plant, focus on the fruit that is maturing slowly, growing irregularly or rotting. You will need a pair of gardening gloves and sharp pruning shears. Time varies based on how many plants you trim.
- Make yourself comfortable
Pruning can be difficult on your body, so it is important to wear gloves and keep your shears sharpened to prevent hand muscle strains and blisters.
- Choose your vines carefully
Clipping vines can actually cause the watermelon plant to grow additional runners, so if you're looking to save space in your garden you will have to repeatedly check and maintain the growth. Also, clipping vines will prevent other female flowers from blooming, which means new watermelons will not grow. However, before the lateral vines develop, you can cut off the end buds from the main vine for less future maintenance.
- Trim off and dispose of certain melons
Cutting the bad melons from the vine will allow the plant to give more energy to the healthy fruit. Look for diseased parts of the plant and melons that are irregularly-shaped, maturing slowly or rotting. Be sure to check the bottoms of the melons as well. Prevent the spread of disease by disposing the bad melons and vines immediately.