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How to Pick a Watermelon

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Date:  August 27, 2021
Agent:  Donna Teasley

Hello, this is Donna Teasley, horticulture agent with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Burke Center.

What food item comes to mind when most of us think about summer? I would have to say watermelon. Nothing is more refreshing than a big old slice of icy cold watermelon on a hot summer afternoon. Why, even my dog loves watermelon! There are many types and sizes to choose from starting from the small icebox melons to the newer seedless varieties but not to forget the huge oblong Charleston Grays and striped Crimson Sweet melons that bring back seed spitting contests and picnics in everyone’s memories.

But the one universal problem that consumers have with any melon they buy is how to pick a ripe fruit. Here are a few tips to use when searching for the perfect watermelon:

The underside should be a creamy color, not white or yellow.

If the melon is striped, the colors in the contrasting stripes should be similar. The rind should be dark and dull in color. When thumped, the sound should be a thud and not a hollow ring. When rubbed with the fingertips small indentations should be felt on the rind.

Try these methods the next time you purchase a watermelon.

This is Donna Teasley with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Burke Center. If you would like more information about this program you can call us at 764-9480.