Botanical description

The fruit varies considerably in size from cultivar to cultivar, but can be up to 1 metre long and 40cm wide[16].

Uses

Toxic parts

The sprouting seed produces a toxic substance in its embryo[17].

Edible uses

Notes

The seed contains about 30% protein, 20 - 40% oil[6]. A full nutritional analysis is available[9].

Fruit

Raw, Juiced as a Fruit, Drink, Syrup
Juiced as a Drink, Syrup
Cooked as a Vegetable

Leaves

Cooked as a Greens, Leaf vegetable

The leaves can be eaten cooked as a leaf vegetable.

Unknown part

Oil

Seed

Raw, Cooked as an Unknown use
Dried as a Flour

Material uses

The seed contains 20 - 40% oil. As well as being edible, it is also used for making soap and for lighting[13]. Face masks made from the fruit are used as a cosmetic on delicate skins[18].

Unknown part

Oil

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

The seed is demulcent, diuretic, pectoral and tonic[19][9]. It is sometimes used in the treatment of the urinary passages[19] and has been used to treat bed wetting[20]. The seed is also a good vermifuge[19] and has a hypotensive action[18]. A fatty oil in the seed, as well as aqueous or alcoholic extracts, paralyze tapeworms and roundworms[10].

The fruit, eaten when fully ripe or even when almost putrid, is used as a febrifuge[19] The fruit is also diuretic, being effective in the treatment of dropsy and renal stones[18]. The fruit contains the substance lycopine (which is also found in the skins of tomatoes). This substance has been shown to protect the body from heart attacks and, in the case of the tomato at least, is more effective when it is cooked[21]. The rind of the fruit is prescribed in cases of alcoholic poisoning and diabetes[9].

The root is purgative and in large dose is said to be a certain emetic[19].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - sow spring in a rich compost in a greenhouse. Either put 2-3 seeds in each pot and thin to the best plant, or prick out the seedlings into individual pots of rich soil as soon as they are large enough to handle. Grow them on fast and, if trying them outside, plant out after the last expected frosts. Give them some protection, such as a cloche or a frame, at least until they are growing away vigorously.

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Citrullus lanatus. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

Prefers a rich sandy loam and a very sunny position[1][13][16]. A drought resistant plant once established, it is intolerant of wet soils[13]. Tolerates a pH in the range 5.3 to 8.

The water melon is frequently grown for its edible fruit in warm temperate and tropical areas, there are many named varieties[5]. It is not frost hardy and requires a long hot summer if it is to fruit well. It is not really a suitable crop for growing outdoors in Britain at the present time, though it is possible that new faster maturing cultivars will be developed. It is best grown in greenhouse conditions in Britain[K]. The cultivars 'Fordbrook hybrid', New Hampshire midget' and 'Sugar baby' mature in 80 - 85 days in Long Island, New York[16].

A good companion plant for potatoes[22].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Citrullus lanatus. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Citrullus lanatus.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Citrullus lanatus
Genus
Citrullus
Family
Cucurbitaceae
Imported References
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
9
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
no shade
Soil PH
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
  • Drought
Ecosystems
Native Climate Zones
None listed.
Adapted Climate Zones
None listed.
Native Geographical Range
None listed.
Native Environment
None listed.
Ecosystem Niche
None listed.
Root Zone Tendancy
None listed.
Life
Deciduous or Evergreen
?
Herbaceous or Woody
?
Life Cycle
Growth Rate
?
Mature Size
?
Fertility
?
Pollinators
?
Flower Colour
?
Flower Type

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"image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.


"image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

"image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

"image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki."image:Watermelon-garden.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.


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References

  1. ? 1.01.11.2 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (32202/01/01)
  2. ? 2.02.1 Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-20459-6 (32202/01/01)
  3. ? 3.03.1 Sholto-Douglas. J. Alternative Foods. ()
  4. ? 4.04.1 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (32202/01/01)
  5. ? 5.05.15.25.35.45.55.65.7 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (32202/01/01)
  6. ? 6.06.16.2 Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable ISBN 0094579202 (32202/01/01)
  7. ? 7.07.17.2 Howes. F. N. Nuts. Faber (32202/01/01)
  8. ? 8.08.18.2 Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World. Keigaku Publishing (32202/01/01)
  9. ? 9.09.19.29.39.49.5 Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S. Medicinal Plants of China Reference Publications, Inc. ISBN 0-917256-20-4 (32202/01/01)
  10. ? 10.010.110.210.3 Chopra. R. N., Nayar. S. L. and Chopra. I. C. Glossary of Indian Medicinal Plants (Including the Supplement). Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, New Delhi. (32202/01/01)
  11. ? 11.011.1 Allardice.P. A - Z of Companion Planting. Cassell Publishers Ltd. ISBN 0-304-34324-2 (32202/01/01)
  12. ? 12.012.1 Organ. J. Gourds. Faber (32202/01/01)
  13. ? 13.013.113.213.313.413.5 Rosengarten. jnr. F. The Book of Edible Nuts. Walker & Co. ISBN 0802707699 (32202/01/01)
  14. ? 14.014.1 RHS Lily Group. Lilies and Related Plants. ()
  15. ? 15.015.1 Evans. R. L. Handbook of Cultivated Sedums. Science Reviews (32202/01/01)
  16. ? 16.016.116.216.316.4 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (32202/01/01)
  17. ? Frohne. D. and Pf?nder. J. A Colour Atlas of Poisonous Plants. Wolfe ISBN 0723408394 (32202/01/01)
  18. ? 18.018.118.218.318.4 Chiej. R. Encyclopaedia of Medicinal Plants. MacDonald ISBN 0-356-10541-5 (32202/01/01)
  19. ? 19.019.119.219.319.419.5 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (32202/01/01)
  20. ? 20.020.1 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (32202/01/01)
  21. ? 21.021.1 Radio 4 AM - (32202/01/01)
  22. ? Riotte. L. Companion Planting for Successful Gardening. Garden Way, Vermont, USA. ISBN 0-88266-064-0 (32202/01/01)



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