Melonberries thrive in humid subtropical climates. They can fruit in hot-summer Mediterranean climates as long as they are watered every few weeks during the summer. Cooler climates are a bit trickier in that they can survive fairly cold temperatures, down to Zone 5a, but most areas in zone 5 do not have the heat or grow season to fully ripen the fruit. I have not seen any reports about how tolerant they are of hot desert climates.
Some female Melonberry trees will ripen seedless berries when a male tree is not present, but it may take anywhere from 3 to 10 years or more before the fruit stops dropping early. Male trees sometimes produce female flowers. It is possible for male trees to randomly convert into female and produce a large crop of fruit.
Clones can begin to fruit after one year, but seedlings can take up to 10 years.
Preferred pH: 6.1 - 6.5. Acceptable pH: up to 7.8. I have not seen word about how tolerant they are of more acidic soil, but if they're anything like their mulberry relative, it should be fine. Melonberries are tolerant of poor soils.
● Melonberry is usually referred to as "Che" or "Mandarin Melonberry".
● The tree can drop its thorns after a few years.
● Melonberry is usually grafted on osage orange rootstock because they sucker profusely on their own.
Additional Reading
CHE Cudrania tricuspidata
Che: Chewy Dollops of Maroon Sweetness,