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Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative Report 3:38 (article 21) 1980

An Additional Seed Length Class in Watermelon

B. B. Rhodes

Edisto Experiment Station, Blackville, SC 29817

Poole, Grimball and Porter (1) reported digenic control of seed length in watermelon. A ratio of 9 medium (10 mm mean length): 3 long (13 mm mean length) : 4 short (6 mm mean length) was reported. The range of seed lengths for the short parents was 4.5-7.5 mm, the range for the medium parents was 7.5-11.5 mm, and the range for the long parents was 11.5 to 16.5. A small-seeded melon was obtained from the USDA Vegetable Lab in Charleston labeled W 941 with an apparent origin in Hungary or Romania.

The mean length of seed for the 'Coconut Melon' was 3.8 mm; the seed length of selected watermelon varieties is given in Table 1. Of the varieties measured, a difference of 0.7 mm existed between 'Sunshade' and 'Chris Cross' seed and a difference of 1.8 mm between 'Sugar Bush' and 'Market Midget' seed. The gap between 'Sugar Baby' and 'Coconut Melon' was 3.2 mm. 'Coconut Melon' was 2.2 mm shorter than the mean for the short-seeded variety used by Poole et al. (1). The seed length class of 'Coconut Melon' has remained constant for three generations.

Table 1. Seed length of watermelon cultivars.z

Cultivar

Length (mm)

Cultivar

Length (mm)

Florida Giant

14.2

Charleston Gray

11.5

Blackstone

14.1

Congo

11.2

Smokylee

13.6

Sugar Bush

11.1

Texas Golden

13.3

Market Midget

9.3

Garrisonian

13.0

Dixie Queen

8.8

Stone Mountain

12.9

Crimson Sweet

8.7

Grahoma

12.6

Improved Peacock

8.3

Tom Watson

12.6

Winter Queen

8.2

Jubilee

12.5

Supersweet

8.0

Wondermelon

12.5

Kengarden

7.9

Ice Cream

12.5

Royal Charleston

7.5

Tendersweet

12.5

Allsweet

7.5

Sunshade

12.3

Sugar Baby

7.0

Chris Cross

11.6

Coconut Melon

3.8

z Ten seeds were measured with vernier calipers to the nearest half mm.

Literature Cited

  1. Poole, C. F., P. C. Grimball and D. R. Porter. 1941. Inheritance of seed characters in water melon. J. Agr. Res. 63: 433-456.
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Page citation: Wehner, T.C., Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative;
Created by T.C. Wehner and T. Ng, 1 June 2005; design by C.T. Glenn;
send questions to T.C. Wehner; last revised on 23 October, 2009