Influence of Humic Substances on Yield and Fruit Quality of Organic Cantaloupe

ZaDarreyal Wiggins, Tennessee State University


This research spotlighted the use of biostimulants in cantaloupe (Cucumis melo L.) yield production and fruit quality. Biostimulants are additives that have been produced from biological substances and used to enhance crop yield, nutrient uptake, tolerance to abiotic stress, and agricultural practices. This research was conducted summer of 2019–2021. In this study, we tested, under monitored and replicated conditions, the effect of humic acid, fulvic acid, and biochar. Two organic cantaloupe varieties, PMR Delicious 51 and Divergent F1, and one conventional variety, Delicious 51, were used in this experiment over three growing seasons. The organic treatments were biochar (B), humic acid (HA), and a combination of humic acid and fulvic acid (HA+FA). The humic substances substantially positively affected yield production, sensory attributes, and phytochemical profile. In three trials, Divergent F1 cantaloupe significantly increased the number of fruit per plant, mean weight, mean width, and mean height when humic acid and fulvic acid were applied compared to control. PMR Delicious yielded significantly higher values in 2019 and 2021. For the 2020 trial, there was no significant difference in yield parameters. Biochar generated the highest moisture content for both varieties. There was a significant advantage for humic substances in antioxidant activity as HA+FA substantially outperformed all treatments in both varieties. HA+FA had significantly higher firmness for both varieties. Similar volatile compounds were found in all treatments; however, they were distinct concentrations. Humic substances have a beneficial effect on cantaloupe production and phytochemical profile.

Subject Area

Agriculture|Biology|Plant sciences

Recommended Citation

ZaDarreyal Wiggins, "Influence of Humic Substances on Yield and Fruit Quality of Organic Cantaloupe" (2022). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI29061531.