close-up of a watermelons
What’s more refreshing than a slice of cold watermelons on a hot summer day? Melons are simply awesome when it comes to beating the heat!
The green smelling berry:
The summer fruit continues to delight us with a ‘green smell’ and refreshing flavors. The presence of C-6 and C-9 aldehydes contribute to the smell of watermelon that is profoundly described as green.
Both fruit and vegetable:
Melons are 92% water, hence the name. They are classified as both fruit and vegetable. Botanically speaking, watermelon is a berry and is referred to as pepo.
The relative of pumpkins and cucumbers with an edible rind:
- It belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family and is the relative of pumpkins and cucumbers. The members of this family bear separate male and female flowers on the same plant.
- The fruit has a watery flesh that balances sweet, sour, and bitter tastes gracefully with a hard rind that is edible and can be shaved into salads or savored as smoothies.
- Watermelons rind is used in pickles, curries, chutneys, and jams. The rind has citrulline, vitamin B, and vitamin C that works wonders for good health.
The seeds are fewer nutrients:
Melons are densely packed with nutrients. They are a rich source of proteins, fats, omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, magnesium, zinc, copper, and potassium. The seeds work wonders for skin, hair, and blood sugar control.
Have you heard of cubed watermelon?
close-up of cube watermelons
- Yes, you heard it right! Cubed watermelons. Japan has introduced square watermelon. The farmers prefer growing them in square boxes so that they fit perfectly into the refrigerator.
- The Japanese square Melons are more a product of luxury than a product of convenience. Melons are a luxury item in Japan!
Consuming watermelon with salt:
Yes, the Japanese consume watermelon with salt. Salt adds more to the reception of taste buds, hence making the watermelon sweeter than it is.
Suikawari: the Japanese beach activity
suikawari in Japan
Suikawari is a classic beach activity in Japan. The watermelon is placed on cardboard and a blindfolded person smashes it while the crow shouts out to him.
It wasn’t always sweet!
The ancient watermelons was not sweet. It was one hell of a foul fruit with a bland and bitter taste and a pale green texture on the insides. The watermelon that we savor is sweet but the ones that grow in the deserts are still better.
The watermelons vines!
- The watermelons grow on vines. The stems may grow up to three meters long, winding across the standing structures nearby while the leaves are around 200mm long and 150 mm wide.
- The mature stems sprout flowers with yellow and green tones.
The bees are helpful for the growth of watermelons
- The bees pollinate the watermelons hence preventing the development of hollow hearts. The hollow heart is an asymmetrical hole in place of the seeds at the center of the fruit.
- Farmers, therefore, keep at least one beehive for every 4 km square.
The watermelons seeds:
- The watermelon seeds are often dried and roasted to consume directly and also act as raw materials for making flour. The seeds are consumed during the Chinese and Vietnamese new year.
- The seeds are packed with nutrients like folate, iron, zinc, copper, magnesium, and potassium and are well known to boost metabolism.
- The oil extracted from watermelon seeds works wonders for the skin and is featured in cuisines.
The watermelon shell was used as a water container: the handy fact!
- The explorers of the 19th century extracted the watermelon flesh through a small hole inside the fruit
- They dried the hollowed shell that left it hard and waterproof and thereby the shell was used as a water container.
The roots of watermelon:
- Watermelon root was used as a laxative and emetic. The roots were crushed and their juice was extracted for women who went through abortions.
- It is believed that the root extract could help stop bleeding in such women.
- The seedless watermelon is a result of selective breeding. The pollen from a female watermelon is planted on the flower of a male watermelon resulting in seedless watermelon with white outer casings that coat the seed.
Official state vegetable of Oklahoma!
Watermelon is the official state vegetable of Oklahoma. The state committee had voted 44-2 in 2007, which ruled that watermelon was a vegetable and not a fruit.
The largest watermelon ever!
As per the Guinness World Records, the largest watermelon weighed 268.8 pounds. It was grown in Arkansas by Lloyd Bright and the record was set in 2005.
A healthy fruit:
- The juicy bite of watermelon is packed with vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, lycopene, amino acids, and a modest level of potassium. Less with lycopene, the fruit triggers healthy reactions.
- Lycopene is an antioxidant that works wonders for health.
Orangeglo watermelon: the watermelon with an orange flesh:
close-up of orange glow watermelon
The orange glow watermelon have orange flesh on the inside. With a distinctly oval shape, these watermelon weigh around 14kg and take 3 months to ripen for harvest.
Moon and star watermelons: the heirloom variety!
These watermelon have stellar marks on their rind. they feature dark green skin with speckled yellow spots and flesh that may be red, orange, or yellow.
Savouring the summer delight:
close-up of watermelon salsa
There are several ways of savoring watermelon like slicing them into salads, savoring the drink of the juicy fruit, or using it up to make watermelon wine.