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  • Author or Editor: G.W. Elmstrom x
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Abstract

A dominant tap root was apparent in nearly all direct-seeded watermelon plants, Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Mansf., but was lacking in those that had been transplanted. Transplants were characterized by a shallow, extensive root system and superior yield in contrast to direct-seeded plants.

Open Access

Watermelon, Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Matsum. & Nakai, requires insects, most commonly honey bees, for pollination and fruit set. The transfer of an adequate amount of pollen is essential to ensure optimum fruit set, size, and shape. To encourage bee visits and the transfer of pollen, two applications of Bee-Scent*, a bee attractant, at 2.47 liter·ha-1 were made to watermelon on five farms in central and southwest Florida. Honey bee, Apis melifera L., activity was monitored for two days following each application and yield and fruit quality were determined. On only a few occasions was increased honey bee activity noted. Application of bee attractant increased total yield in one field in central Florida and resulted in an increase in early yield at all three locations in southwest Florida. Soluble solids content of mature fruit was not directly affected by treatment. Treatment increased the seed content of fruit from three of five farms.

Free access

Mature seeds occur occasionally in triploid watermelon fruit. In one trial, the average number varied from 0.3 to 28.7 seeds per fruit in 30 entries and from 0.5 to 8.6 seeds per fruit in the cultivars within this group. The frequency of mature seed in triploid fruit with the same tetraploid parent ranged from 0.3 to 3.0 and from 1.25 to 5.0 seeds per fruit in triploid fruit having the same diploid parent. Tetra A, with 151 seeds per fruit, produced triploids with 6 seeds per fruit; whereas Tetra B, with 74 seeds per fruit produced triploids with only 1.3 seeds per fruit. Date-of-flowering of diploid watermelon cultivars used as pollenizers for triploids affected maturity date of the triploids. Icebox-types that flower early produced higher early yields of triploid fruit; whereas standard cultivars that flower later produced higher yields late in the season.

Free access

Abstract

A 3rd recessive, male-sterile gene in muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) is named male sterile-3 and symbolized ms-3. Male sterile-3 is phenotypically distinct from male-sterile genes ms-1 or ms-2.

Open Access

Fruit set of 'Crimson Sweet', 'Jubilee II', 'King of Hearts', 'Mickylee', and 'Sangria' watermelons was studied in Florida, In 1991 and 1992 seasons at Bradenton and Leesburg, In 1991, fruit set at Bradenton occurred primarily from 7-10 October. At Leesburg, fruit set in at least one of the four varieties occurred over 19 days. However, there were flushes of fruit setting 25-28 September and again 5-7 October. Fruit set over the entire season ranged from 11 to 16% at Leesburg and between 17 and 20% at Bradenton. In 1992, fruit set occurred primarily between 11 and 17 October at both locations. Fruit set for the entire season ranged from 16 to 21% at Bradenton and 22 to 31% at Leesburg. The effects of bee attractants on watermelon fruit yield were studied in Manatee (Bradenton) County in fall 1991 (Bee Scent) and in Manatee and Lake (Leesburg) counties in spring 1992 (Bee-Here). Bee attractants did not significantly affect yield in three of four experiments. In the fourth experiment, early yield and average fruit weight for the entire season were increased significantly following application of the bee attractant.

Free access

Abstract

‘Dixielee’ watermelon (Citrullus lanatus [Thunb.] Matsum. & Nakai) produces round striped fruits with intense red flesh. It grows vigorously and is resistant to race 1 anthracnose, Colletotrichum lagenarium (Pass.) Ellis & Halsted, and highly resistant to fusarium wilt, Fusarium oxysporum Schlecht. f. sp. niveum [E. F. Sm.] Snyd. & Hans. Because of its tough rind, firm flesh, attractive flesh color, high soluble solids, and excellent eating quality, ‘Dixielee’ is expected to help meet the need for additional high quality cultivars for commercial watermelon production in Florida and other producing areas as well as appeal to home gardeners who place a high priority on fruit quality.

Open Access

Abstract

‘Sugarlee’ watermelon [Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Matsum. & Nakai] is an early season cultivar that produces high-quality fruits suitable for shipping or local market sales. It is resistant to anthracnose, caused by race 1 of Colletotrichum lagenarium (Pass.) Ellis & Halsted, and fusarium wilt caused by Fu-sarium oxvsporum Schlect. f. sp. niveum (E.F. Sm.) Snyd. & Hans. Because it matures early, ‘Sugarlee’ fits well into Florida’s commercial production program and might be used in conjunction with ‘Dixielee’ to lengthen the shipping season for any given production area or grower. ‘Sugarlee’ has performed well in the Southern Cooperative Watermelon Trials during the period 1977-1981 and is well-adapted throughout most of the watermelon production areas in the eastern United States.

Open Access

Abstract

Sugars in watermelon [Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Matsum. & Nakai] cultivars grown at Leesburg, Florida, were determined by liquid chromatography in 1976, 1977, and 1979. There was a wide variation among cultivars in the ratio of total reducing sugars, fructose plus glucose, to the nonreducing sugar, sucrose. This ratio was dependent upon cultivar and stage of maturity. In 1979, sugars in developing fruit of 8 watermelon cultivars were determined at 7 intervals from 12 to 36 days after anthesis. Initial development of sugar was more rapid in the cultivars ‘Sugarlee’, ‘Crimson Sweet’, ‘Dixielee’, and ‘Yellow Baby’ than in ‘Charleston Gray’ and ‘Jubilee’. Early development of sugar is especially important for production of high quality fruit when melons are harvested before full maturity for the commercial trade. In general, fructose and glucose increased until the 24th day and declined thereafter, whereas sucrose was not detected until the 20th day and increased thereafter. The relative sweetness at all stages was calculated.

Open Access

Abstract

Occurrence of bacterial rind necrosis (BRN) caused by Erwinia sp. among 15 cultivars of watermelon, Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Mansf., planted at Leesburg, Florida in 1972 ranged from 10.0% to 44.6%.

Open Access

Abstract

Significant differences in relative field resistance to root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne spp.) were found among 21 muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) cultivars and breeding lines.

Open Access