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Developing and
enhancing the
genetics of economically-important

Watermelon Research and Development Group

Report from 2004 Annual Meeting

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Tulsa, Oklahoma
February 15, 2004

Benny D. Bruton, Chairman
US Department of Agriculture
Agricultural Research Service
Lane, Oklahoma 74555
[Voice] 580-889-7395 [Fax] 580-889-5783
[Web Page]

The Annual Meeting of the Watermelon Research & Development Working Group (WRDWG) will be Sunday, February 15, 2004 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The meeting will be held (8:00 AM - 5:00 PM) at the Tulsa Ballroom Central (Adam’s Mark Hotel) in conjunction with The Southern Association of Agricultural Scientists (S.A.A.S.) and the Southern Region American Society for Horticultural Sciences (SR: ASHS). Please let Dr. Paul Smeal (Secretary-Treasurer) know that we appreciate the support of SR:ASHS. We expect to have an excellent program this year. As per the request of the members, we will meet for a full again day this year.

Our "Feature Speaker" will be Ms. Michele Westley presenting information on fresh-cut watermelons. This will be an excellent opportunity to learn many details of the watermelon fresh-cut industry. Presenters should stay within the time allotment and keep presentations informal. Bring a CD with your photos to the meeting. We will have a digital projector available.

Dr. Paul Smeal has advised me that anyone interested in submitting an abstract within our group can still do so. The abstract should conform to guidelines established by the Southern Region American Society for Horticultural Science. This will not change our present presentation format, but you can still submit an abstract. Dr. Smeal also requested that you register with SAAS even if you only attend the Watermelon Research and Development Working Group Meeting. If you see a mistake on the program, please get in touch with me immediately. I look forward to seeing you in Tulsa.

Welcome: Benny Bruton, Chairman, E-mail:

I. 8:00 AM WEB PAGE:

**Non-members are encouraged to fill out the forms at the WRDWG Web Site and submit them to the chairman for processing into our database Scientist and Area of Expertise

**All members and interested parties should submit information on: Hot Topics such as new diseases or new releases. Please update your E-mail address and especially phone numbers


  • 8:15 AM *Seminis, Benito Juarez
  • 8:30 AM *Willhite Seed, Don Dobbs
  • 8:45 AM *Syngenta Seeds, Tom Williams
  • 9:00 AM *Abbott & Cobb, Pete Suddarth
  • 9:15 AM *Sugar Creek Seeds, Glenn Price
  • 10:00 AM Break


  • 10:15 AM Don Maynard, University of Florida, Bradenton, FL, "Review of the Florida Watermelon Trials-Spring 2003"
  • 10:40 AM Frank Dainello, Texas A&M University, College Station, "Review of the Texas Statewide Watermelon Trials"
  • 11:00 AM George Boyhan. University of Georgia, Statesboro, Georgia. "Georgia Watermelon Variety Trials, 2003"
  • 11:15 AM Roberts, Warren. "Oklahoma Watermelon Cultivar Evaluation- 2003"
  • 11:30 AM Group Discussion on Any Topic "Bring CD photo or two for discussion"


  • 12:00 Noon to 1:00 PM


  • 1:00 PM Westley, Michele L., Director of Quality Assurance, J-M Foods/J-M Farms Inc., "Factors Influencing Quality and Food Safety in Fresh Watermelon Processing."


  • 1:45 PM A. Levi, C. Thomas, Y. Xu, T. Wehenr, X. Zhang, A. Davis, U. Reddy. U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service, Charleston, SC. "Constructing genetic linkage map: differences in distribution of AFLP, ISSR and RAPD markers on watermelon genome"
  • 2:00 PM Edelson, J. and Roberts, W. Oklahoma State University, Lane, OK. "Effects of squash bug feeding on watermelon growth and fruit production"
  • 2:15 PM Egel, D. Dept Of Botany and Plant Pathology, West Lafayette, IN "Race determination in Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum from southern Indiana"
  • 2:30 PM Gitaitus, R. Univ. Of Georgia, Dept. Plant Pathology, Tifton, GA. "A log-normal distribution of phytopathogenic bacteria in seed".
  • 2:45 PM Leskovar, D.I. and Bang, H. Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, Dept. Horticultural Sciences, Texas A&M University, Uvalde, TX 78801; "Environmental effects on seedling and fruit quality of watermelon"
  • 3:00 PM Afternoon Break
  • 3:15 PM Miller, M. E. Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, Texas A&M Univ. Weslaco, TX. "Insensitivity of Didymella bryoniae to azoxystrobin in South Texas"
  • 3:30 PM Roberts, W. Oklahoma State University, Lane Oklahoma; "Watermelon Seedling Survival Associated with Pythium aphanidermatum"
  • 3:45 PM King, S. Texas A & M University, Dept of Horticultural Sciences, College Station, TX. "Current Status of Carotenoid Gene Cloning in Watermelon"
  • 4:00 PM Schultheis, J. R. North Carolina State University, Dept. Horticultural Science, Raleigh, NC "Commercial pollinizers for triploid watermelon production"
  • 4:15 PM Nihat Guner and Todd Wehner North Carolina State University, Dept. Horticultural Science, Raleigh, NC "Watermelon gene overview"
  • 4:30 PM Perkins-Veazie, Collins, J. U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service, Lane, OK; "Update on research on watermelon antioxidants"


  • We thank Pete Suddarth of Abbott & Cobb for providing the refreshments. We greatly appreciate it!!


  • Abbott & Cobb:Tulsa, Oklahoma - 2004
  • Seminis Seeds:Mobile, Alabama – 2003
  • National Watermelon Promotion Board: Kissimmee, Florida - 2002
  • Sugar Creek Seed Inc.: Ft. Worth, Texas - 2001
  • Willhite Seeds: Lexington, Kentucky - 2000
  • Novartis Seeds Inc.: Memphis, Tennessee - 1999
  • Sunseeds: Little Rock, Arkansas - 1998
  • Barham Seeds: Birmingham, Alabama - 1997
  • American SunMelon: Greensboro, North Carolina - 1996
  • Willhite Seeds: New Orleans, Louisiana - 1995
  • Asgrow Seed Company: Nashville, Tennessee - 1994
  • American SunMelon:Tulsa, Oklahoma - 1993


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Page citation: Wehner, T.C., Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative;
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send questions to T.C. Wehner; last revised on 19 February, 2008