Watermelon Fruit Disorders

in HortTechnology
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  • 1 University of Florida, 5007 60 St. E., Bradenton, FL 34203-9324.
  • | 2 University of Florida, 5336 University Ave., Leesburg, FL 34748-8232.

Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus [Thunb.] Matsum & Nakai) fruit are affected by a number of preharvest disorders that may limit their marketability and thereby restrict economic returns to growers. Pathogenic diseases discussed include bacterial rind necrosis (Erwinia sp.), bacterial fruit blotch [Acidovorax avenae subsp. citrulli (Schaad et al.) Willems et al.], anthracnose [Colletotrichum orbiculare (Berk & Mont.) Arx. syn. C. legenarium (Pass.) Ellis & Halst], gummy stem blight/black rot [Didymella bryoniae (Auersw.) Rehm], and phytophthora fruit rot (Phytophthora capsici Leonian). One insect-mediated disorder, rindworm damage is discussed. Physiological disorders considered are blossom-end rot, bottleneck, and sunburn. Additionally, cross stitch, greasy spot, and target cluster, disorders of unknown origin are discussed. Each defect is shown in color for easy identification.