One of the oldest fruits in the world was celebrated yesterday (3 August) during National Watermelon Day. Green on the outside with a juicy, fruity, pink centre, there’s more to watermelons than looking good and tasting amazing. 🍉
This one will be an interesting fact for all your future dinner parties. Good things come with age; the first watermelon to ever be recorded in history was 5,000 years ago in Egypt.
Sticking with the Egyptians, it was custom to keep watermelons in the burial tombs of Kings. It was believed that watermelons would help to nourish the soul after life. Back to life…
Watermelon is in fact a berry, almost as curious as an avocado being a berry, but that’s true too.
One of the few fruits to have the characteristics of both fruit and vegetable, it means watermelon has a double life. It can be classed as a fruit due to the fact it is grown from a seed and is super sweet on the taste buds. The vegetable side of a watermelon comes from its roots – watermelons have family ties to cucumbers, pumpkins, and squash vegetables. Who knew?
Doing exactly what it says on the tin, watermelon is basically water in a sweet pulpy form. Watermelons are made up of 92% water and 6% sugar. Mix this together with the other nutrients and vitamins found in the veggie-fruit, and watermelon is the tastiest, and healthiest, snack around.
Save the skin
How strange would it be to see someone enjoying a slice of watermelon only to go and eat the rind? Madness. Well not really – back in the good old days when food was chemical-free, the rind was used as a vegetable, and the seeds were used in home remedies.
From bright pink to a mango orange, watermelon is a colour chameleon. There are more than 1,2000 watermelon varieties produced across the world with different weights, colours, and taste. Gotta try them all.
America wins the race
The United States is one of the top countries in the world for watermelon production. Ranking fifth due to the mixed climate across the country, 44 states grow watermelon, with Texas and Californian leading the country’s production.
Leading the way
China is winning the watermelon production race ahead of the US. Annually, the country grows 72 million tons of watermelon, closely followed by Turkey producing 4 million tons per year. That’s a lot of watermelons.
So taken by the wonderful watermelon, Oklahoma sate has made watermelon the official state vegetable. Americans sure do love their watermelons