Although the tradition of growing and feasting on watermelon (Citrullus lanatus, syn. Citrullus vulgaris) goes back for thousands of years, the fruit still has an endless capacity for surprise. New breeding techniques, together with the import of exotic cultivars, have made it clear how many options exist beyond the red-fleshed, black-seeded varieties we recall from childhood picnics. If you are trying to grow traditional red-fleshed watermelons, however, inexperience either at choosing seeds or at growing them properly may yield some white-hued shocks come harvest period.
White heart is a disorder that may develop during the final phases of watermelon development. With this illness, white streaks look during the flesh of the melon. In case your watermelon flesh looks solid white instead of white-streaked, you can rule out white heart and consider if you have planted the incorrect watermelon seeds. But if stripes at least one-quarter inch are running through the coloured flesh, white heart could possibly be the matter. This illness may be caused by over-watering or even over-feeding your watermelon patch, particularly during the ripening procedure.
Hard White Watermelons
It is possible you may have accidentally implanted a preserving-type watermelon instead of the more familiar red, tender-fleshed watermelon. Preserving watermelons are called citron watermelons, and are also referred to as pie melon or stockmelon. These old watermelons are used for pickling and in baking. Unlike most watermelons, white citron watermelons are hard-fleshed and cannot be eaten raw. They look like conventional watermelons on the outside, but their hard flesh makes them a great deal more challenging to cut.
Tender White Watermelons
You may also have grown a watermelon that’s been bred to be white-fleshed, but which is perfectly acceptable for eating fresh. These breeds have been tender-fleshed, unlike the white citron watermelon. Two such such cultivars, “Cream of Saskatchewan” and “White Sugar Lump,” grow to be about 10 lbs and possess traditional-looking rinds which are light green with slender, dark green stripes. The sole drawback to these type of sweet, tender-fleshed watermelons is they don’t have the vitamin content of their red, yellow or yellowish orange-fleshed counterparts.
If you buy seed from the unreliable nursery, or are new to saving your own seeds, then you may mistakenly grow the offspring of a red-fleshed watermelon which has cross-pollinated using a citron melon — the watermelon with the tough, white flesh that cannot be eaten fresh. While growing white citron watermelons near red-fleshed watermelons won’t change either type during the initial year of development, using seed from either of these melons may cause white-fleshed melons. Avoid this confusion by only buying seed from a reputable supplier. If you save seeds, then don’t grow citron watermelons near tender-fleshed watermelons.