Fruit and Vegetables

Watermelon harvest

Question: watermelon harvest

how to recognize the moment of harvesting the watermelon. which signs are evident with the maturation of the watermelon.

Answer: watermelon harvest

Dear Claudio,
the watermelons belong to the family of cucurbits, which includes many of the vegetables and fruits grown in the garden, or watermelons (or watermelons), cucumbers, melons, pumpkins and zucchini. In the various regional dialects the names are remixed, so while in many regions with the name of watermelon the watermelon is indicated, in Lombardy watermelons are called cucumbers, while in some areas of Lazio the watermelon is the pumpkin; this is because the name of the watermelon is the oldest one used to refer to cucurbits. The fruits of these plants are quite different from each other, while the plants are almost identical, were it not for the size, and their development is very similar. Only that, pumpkins, melons and watermelons are consumed when they have reached full maturity, while courgettes and cucumbers are harvested and eaten as soon as they reach the desired size, and before they ripen, when the seeds inside them are still transparent and gelatinous; otherwise the rind would become stronger, becoming leathery and tasteless, and the seeds would become woody seeds, and therefore completely ripe zucchini and cucumbers are definitely not very interesting for human consumption. Therefore, courgettes and cucumbers are harvested when they are still small compared to those of ripe fruits, and a very firm consistency. As far as the other cucurbits are concerned, it is good to harvest when they are well ripe, with the seeds already hard and covered with a rigid semi-woody cuticle; as in other plants, this is the moment when the seeds are ripe and therefore could be sown; and as with other plants, at this point the seeds must detach from the mother plant. So, to understand if a watermelon is ripe, we'll do nothing but control the development of the petiole that keeps it attached to the plant: when this is about to dry, the watermelon is perfectly ripe. So, check the petiole, and that kind of dimple to which it is attached; as soon as you notice signs of withering, begin to thin out the waterings, so as to allow the sugars to concentrate in the pulp of your cucurbitaceous plant, be it watermelon, pumpkin or melon. After a few days of withering of the stalk you can already detach the fruit, without waiting for it to detach itself completely, in this way you will have a firm, sweet and compact fruit, which however can still be preserved a few days before being eaten. If you wish to re-seed cucurbits using the seeds produced from the fruits, it is necessary to bring these fruits to complete maturation, waiting for them to come off the plant alone; this also applies to courgettes and cucumbers, which must be left attached to the plant until completely ripe, obtaining a huge and very hard fruit, inside which we can find several hundred seeds.