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veggies growing.gif (7628 bytes)  Vegetarian Newsletter

A Vegetable Crops Extension Publication
Vegetarian 01-11
November 2001

University of Florida
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
Cooperative Extension Service

(Note: Anyone is free to use the information in this newsletter. Whenever possible, please give credit to the authors.
The purpose of trade names in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing information and does not necessarily constitute a recommendation of the product.)

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EVENTS CALENDER

COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES
grnbullet.gif (839 bytes) Tomato Variety Trial, Spring 2001
grnbullet.gif (839 bytes) Spring 2001 GCREC Diploid Watermelon Variety Evaluation
grnbullet.gif (839 bytes) Spring 2001 GCREC Triploid Watermelon Cultigen Evaluation

VEGETABLE GARDENING
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No article this month

List of Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists

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2002 Postharvest Horticulture Industry Tour - March 4-7, 2002. Visit postharvest operations from harvest through shipping in central and southwest Florida. Special rates are available for county and statewide faculty. Contact Steve Sargent (sasa@mail.ifas.ufl.edu, 352-392-1928, ext. 215) or Mark Ritenour (mrit@gnv.ifas.ufl.edu, 561-467-3877).
Cucurbitaceae 2002 - December 8-12, 2002 - Naples Beach and Golf Club, Naples, FL. Contact Donald N. Maynard at (941)751-7636 x239 or dnma@mail.ifas.ufl.edu.

The University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service
The North Florida Research and Education Center – Suwannee Valley, and
The Horticultural Sciences Department announces

The Florida Drip Irrigation School: Managing Water and Nutrients In Vegetable Production

November 13, 2001 8:15 am to 4:00 pm
North Florida Research and Education Center – Suwannee Valley
Live Oak, FL

With increased emphasis in water and nutrient management in vegetable production and continuous need to increase profitability, vegetable growers need to be aware of the latest tools and technology available to optimize water and nutrient management with drip irrigation.

Through classroom teaching and field demonstrations, the goal of this daylong educational program is to provide an update on the principles and practices of efficient water and nutrient management in drip-irrigated vegetable crops. Topics will include trouble-shooting irrigation system problems, irrigation scheduling, fertigation management, and drip system maintenance. Participation in this program will be sanctioned by a certificate of attendance.

This program is offered at no charge, but requires pre-registration. A Sponsored lunch will be provided. If you plan to participate, please notify Bob Hochmuth at the North Florida REC – Suwannee Valley at (386) 362-1725. (Attendance will be limited to 20 participants).

The program will be informal so everyone can relax and learn. No coats and ties will be allowed in the door. It will include a mix of hands-on demonstrations in the field, hands-on classroom activities, and classroom presentations and discussion. The activities will include the following:

Hands-on Activities

*  Injection of blue dye to see wetting patterns at various lengths of time.
*  Determining soil water tension using various devices (Watermarks, TDR, and tensiometers).
*  Measuring free chlorine movement in the drip line for cleaning.
*  Proper back flow prevention set-up.
*  Experiences with various filtration methods for drip systems.
*  Checking for fertilizer compatibility and mixing.
*  Determination of system uniformity.
*  Assembly of drip irrigation components.
*  Results of using drip tape for fumigant delivery.

Presentations and Discussion Topics

* Trouble shooting system design problems.
*
Basics of drip irrigation scheduling.
*
Maintenance of drip systems.
*
Principles of nutrient management with drip irrigation.
*
Role of drip irrigation in future nutrient BMP program.
*
Microbial activity in irrigation water.

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Tomato Variety Trial, Spring 2001

Tomatoes were grown on almost 36,000 acres in the 2000-2001 season and valued more than $490 million making tomatoes the number one vegetable crop in Florida. The objective of this trial was to evaluate the performance of tomato varieties under north Florida spring conditions.

Thirty-two entries were seeded on 2 Feb 2001 into 2 inch Todd planter flats. Soil type was an Orangeburg loamy fine sand. Production system was full bed polyethylene mulch system with drip irrigation. Beds were fumigated with methyl bromide/cloropicrin mixture(67/33) at 350 lbs/a before mulch was laid. Total fertilization was 195-60-195 lbs/a of N-P2O5 -K2O. Between row spacing was 6 feet and in-row spacing was 20 inches. Plot length was 20 feet. Design was a randomized complete block with 4 replications. Tomatoes were transplanted into the field on 28 March 2001. Plants were staked and tied 4 times. Pruning consisted of removing ground suckers plus two more. Registered pesticides were applied as needed. Fruit were harvested at or beyond the mature green stage on 19 June and 2 July. Fruit were separated into marketable and unmarketable and weighed. Marketable fruit were separated into medium, large and extra-large sizes by belts and weighed and counted.

Results

Total yield ranged from a low of 719 boxes/a for ‘ASX 225R’ to a high of 2475 boxes/a for ‘BHN 543' (Table 1). Twenty four other entries produced similar yields to ‘BHN 543'. Yields were much higher overall in 2001 than in 2000 due to the absence of Tomato Spotted Wilt disease in the 2001 season. Growing conditions were also excellent and very little insect and disease pressure was present.

Yields of extra-large fruit ranged from a low of 379 boxes/a for ‘ASX 225R’ to a high of 2129 boxes/a for ‘BHN 543'. Eight other entries had extra-large yields similar to ‘BHN 543'. The largest fruit was produced by ‘BHN 543' at 8.0 oz and smallest by ‘ASX 124R’ at 5.8 oz. Marketable fruit ranged from a high of 83.1 % for ‘FL 91' to a low of 46.6 % for ‘ASX 225R’. 

Table 1. Tomato variety results spring 2001, NFREC, Quincy.

Entry

Source

Marketable yield
(25 lb cartons/a)

Marketable fruit (%)

Average fruit wt (oz)

   

Large

Extra large

Total

   

BHN 543

BHN Research

283 i-m z

2129 a

2475 a

71.8 b-e

8.0 a

BHN 575

BHN Research

621 b

1585 b-e

2358 ab

82.5 a

6.5 h-j

Fla. 7973

GCREC

379 f-l

1877 a-c

2350 ab

80.4 ab

7.3 b-g

FL 91

Seminis

326 i-m

1969 ab

2339 ab

83.1 a

7.4 a-f

RFT 0417

Sygenta

361 g-m

1874 a-c

2326 ab

83.0 a

7.4 a-f

Fla. 7943

GCREC

505 b-h

1747 a-c

2322 ab

80.4 ab

7.1 b-h

BHN 444

BHN Research

591 bc

1592 b-e

2315 ab

73.0 a-d

6.6 g-i

BHN 555

BHN Research

355 g-m

1893 a-c

2304 ab

74.5 a-d

7.5 a-e

BHN 446

BHN Research

908 a

1032 f

2282 a-c

77.3 a-c

5.9 jk

Floralina

Seminis

580 b-d

1508 b-f

2228 a-c

79.2 a-c

6.8 e-i

Rockstar

Seminis

565 b-e

1568 b-e

2213 a-c

77.8 a-c

6.9 d-i

BHN 442

BHN Research

522 b-g

1603 b-e

2208 a-c

80.8 ab

6.9 d-i

BHN 577

BHN Research

545 b-f

1468 b-f

2181 a-c

75.7 a-d

6.5 h-j

BHN 466

BHN Research

777 a

1182 ef

2161 a-d

74.5 a-d

6.2 i-k

RFT 0418

Syngenta

388 f-l

1692 a-e

2143 a-d

77.0 a-d

7.4 a-f

Fla. 7816

GCREC

446 c-i

1617 b-e

2120 a-d

75.9 a-d

7.3 b-g

Fla. 7964

GCREC

457 b-i

1568 b-e

2117 a-d

71.6 b-e

6.9 d-i

Agriset 761

Agrisales

419 d-j

1580 b-e

2091 a-d

71.2 b-e

6.7 f-i

XP 1405037

Seminis

441 c-j

1542 b-e

2059 a-d

81.2 ab

6.9 d-i

Sanibel

Seminis

290 i-m

1734 a-d

2058 a-d

75.6 a-d

7.7 a-c

*FL 47

Seminis

388 f-l

1560 b-e

2058 a-d

80.5 ab

7.0 c-h

HA 3026

Hazera

313 i-m

1668 a-e

2037 a-d

75.4 a-d

7.5 a-e

HA 3027

Hazera

243 k-m

1720 a-d

2004 a-d

74.1 a-d

8.0 a

Solar Set

Seminis

456 b-i

1442 c-f

1986 a-d

69.1 c-f

6.9 d-i

RFT 0849

Syngenta

398 e-k

1485 b-f

1944 a-d

72.8 a-e

6.9 d-i

PS 150535

Seminis

203 m

1655 a-e

1877 b-e

73.2 a-e

7.8 ab

HA 3028

Hazera

268 j-m

1415 c-f

1752 c-e

66.9 d-f

7.6 a-d

RFT 6153

Syngenta

346 h-m

1223 d-f

1636 de

78.3 a-c

6.9 d-i

RFT 0190

Syngenta

220 lm

1180 ef

1438 ef

63.1 e-g

7.2 b-h

ASX 124R

ARI

377 f-l

446 g

1027 fg

56.2 g

5.8 k

ASX 131R

ARI

338 h-m

502 g

1015 fg

60.0 fg

5.9 jk

ASX 225R

ARI

234 k-m

397 g

719 g

46.6 h

6.2 i-k

Z Mean separation in columns by Duncan’s Multiple Range Test, 5% level.

(Olson - Vegetarian 01-11)

Spring 2001 GCREC Diploid Watermelon Variety Evaluation

Diploid (seeded) watermelons generally weigh from 18 to 35 lb each and represent most of the commercial crop grown in Florida. Icebox watermelons weigh 6 to 12 lb each and are grown on a very small acreage. Triploid (seedless) watermelons usually weigh 12 to 18 lb and are grown in Florida on perhaps 30% of the acreage. Florida produced 8.6 million cwt of watermelons of all types from 27,000 harvested acres in 1999-2000, which provided an average yield of 320 cwt/acre. The average price was $5.25/cwt resulting in a crop value of over $45 million which accounted for 3.0% of the gross value of the state’s vegetable crops.

‘Allsweet’ and blocky ‘Crimson Sweet’ types are the most commonly grown diploid watermelons in Florida. Hybrids have replaced open-pollinated varieties in most production areas of the state. The purpose of this trial was to evaluate some of the recently introduced commercial varieties and experimental lines of the blocky ‘Crimson Sweet’ and ‘Allsweet’ types.

The EauGallie fine sand at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC) was prepared in late January by incorporation of 0-0.8-0 lb N-P2O5-K2O per 100 linear bed feet (lbf). Beds were formed and fumigated with methyl bromide:chloropicrin, 67:33 at 2.3 lb/100 lbf. Banded fertilizer was applied in shallow grooves on bed shoulders at 3.1-0-4.3 lb N-P2O5-K2O/100 lbf after the beds were pressed and before application of the black polyethylene mulch. Total fertilizer applied was equivalent to 148-40-206 lb N-P2O5-K2O/acre. The final beds were 32-in. wide and 8-in. high and were spaced on 9-ft centers, with four beds between seepage irrigation/drainage ditches which were on 41-ft centers. The diploid watermelons were planted in rows adjacent to the ditches and also served as pollenizers for triploid watermelons that were being evaluated in the two center beds of each land.

Watermelon seeds were planted on 19 February in holes punched in the polyethylene mulch at 3-ft in-row spacing. Seedlings were thinned at the two true-leaf stage to one per hole. Twenty-seven entries were included in the trial. The 30-ft long plots had ten plants each and were replicated three times in a randomized complete-block design. Weed control in row middles was accomplished by cultivation and application of paraquat. Plant stands recorded just before vines grew together showed no significant difference among plots. Pesticides were applied as needed for control of silverleaf whitefly (endosulfan), gummy stem blight (chlorothalonil, azoxystrobin, mefenoxam, maneb, and thiophanate-methyl), and lepidopterous larvae (Bacillus thuringiensis, spinosad and esfenvalerate).

Watermelons were harvested during the 24-30 May and 6-12 June periods. Marketable fruit (U.S. No. 1 or better) according to the U.S. Standards for Grades of Watermelons were separated from culls and counted and weighed individually. Fruit 12 lbs and larger were assumed to be marketable. Soluble solids (a measure of sweetness) determinations were made with a digital, hand-held refractometer on six fruit of each entry at each harvest, polar and equatorial dimensions were obtained and the incidence of hollowheart was recorded for these fruits.

Early yields, based on the first of two harvests, ranged from 68 cwt/acre for ‘Starbrite’ to 764 for Summer Flavor 790 (Table 1). Ten other entries had early yields similar to those of ‘Summer Flavor 790’. Average fruit weight ranged from 20.6 lbs for ‘Montreal’ to 34.2 lbs for XWD 98210.

Total yields (Table 1) varied from 489 cwt/acre for SWD 8307 to 973 cwt/acre for ‘Summer Flavor 790’. Seventeen other entries had yields similar to those of ‘Summer Flavor 790’. Average fruit weight over the entire season ranged from 20.3 lbs for ‘Montreal’ to 32.7 lbs for XWD 98210. Fruit per plant varied from 1.4 for ‘Margarita’ and XWD 98210 to 2.8 for ‘Summer Flavor 790’. Soluble solids concentrations ranged from 11.0% for W X 24 to 13.2% for ‘Sentinel’. Seasonal average soluble solids for all entries exceeded the 10% specified for optional use to designate very good internal quality in the U.S. Standards for Grades of Watermelons. The incidence of hollowheart in those fruit sampled varied from none in seven entries to 63% in ‘Starbrite’.

Watermelon variety evaluations have been conducted at this location each spring season since 1991. The highest yields ranged from 439 cwt/acre in 1996 to 1026 cwt/acre in 1993. In spring 2001, the highest yield was 973 cwt/ acre which was considerably greater than the 10-year average yield of 762 cwt/acre.

Based on this and previous trials, the following ‘Allsweet’ and blocky ‘Crimson Sweet’ type varieties are expected to perform well in Florida: ‘Big Stripe’ (for trial), ‘Celebration’, ‘Fiesta’, ‘Mardi Gras’, ‘Regency’, ‘Royal Star’, ‘Royal Sweet’, ‘Sentinel’, ‘Starbrite’, ‘Stars-N-Stripes’, and Summer Flavor 790, 800, and 900 series. Other varieties may perform equally well on some farms.

A complete report of this trial is available from the author at dnma@mail.ifas.ufl.edu

Table 1. Early and total yields, average fruit weight, fruit per plant, percentages of cull fruit, soluble solids and the incidence and severity of hollowheart of diploid watermelons. Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, Bradenton. Spring 2001.

 

 

Entry

 

 

Source

Early Harvest1

Total Harvest

Weight (cwt/A)2

Avg Fruit Wt (lb)

Weight (cwt/A)1

Avg Fruit Wt (lb)

Fruit per Plant

Cull (%)4

Soluble Solids (%)

Hollowheart

(%)

(in.)3

Summer Flavor 790

Abbott & Cobb

764 a5

24.0 b-e

973 a

23.8 b-f

2.8 a

12 a-e

12.1 a-d

0 c

0.0 d

Starbrite

Seminis

68 i

25.2 b-e

882 ab

25.5 b-d

2.1 a-c

15 a-d

12.9 ab

63 a

0.6 a-c

RWM 8036

Syngenta

624 ab

25.8 b-e

845 a-c

25.0 b-e

2.2 a-c

10 a-e

11.4 b-d

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

SWD 7201

Sakata

420 b-h

28.5 b

821 a-c

26.8 bc

2.0 bc

7 a-e

12.0 a-d

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

Royal Star

Seminis

438 b-g

26.4 b-d

819 a-c

26.7 bc

2.0 bc

4 c-e

11.3 cd

20 a-c

0.2 b-d

XWD 98212

Sakata

536 a-d

27.1 bc

814 a-c

25.5 b-d

2.0 a-c

11 a-e

12.7 a-c

25 a-c

0.2 b-d

RWM 8114

Syngenta

313 c-i

24.6 b-e

805 a-c

23.0 c-f

2.2 a-c

11 a-e

11.5 b-d

20 a-c

0.3 b-d

Big Stripe

Willhite

150 g-i

24.7 b-e

772 a-d

26.8 bc

1.8 bc

4 c-e

12.1 a-d

50 ab

0.7 ab

Sweetheart

Willhite

247 d-i

26.5 b-d

750 a-d

27.2 b

1.8 bc

5 b-e

12.3 a-d

60 a

0.5 a-d

Royal Sweet

Seminis

139 hi

26.4 b-d

747 a-d

25.7 b-d

1.8 bc

3 de

12.1 a-d

38 a-c

0.2 b-d

Fiesta

Syngenta

559 a-c

21.1 de

718 a-d

20.6 f

2.2 ab

13 a-e

11.8 a-d

8 bc

0.1 dc

Mardi Gras

Syngenta

558 a-c

21.9 c-e

714 a-d

21.2 ef

2.1 a-c

4 c-e

11.8 a-d

0 c

0.0 d

Sentinel

Seminis

587 a-c

24.4 b-e

708 a-d

24.0 b-f

2.0 bc

9 a-e

13.2 a

20 a-c

0.2 b-d

XWD 98210

Sakata

621 ab

34.2 a

702 a-d

32.7 a

1.4 bc

10 a-e

12.0 a-d

0 c

0.0 d

RWM 8110

Syngneta

618 ab

22.2 c-e

693 a-d

22.0 d-f

2.1 a-c

3 de

12.5 a-c

0 c

0.0 d

Regency

Seminis

380 b-h

23.7 b-e

689 a-d

22.0 d-f

2.0 a-c

1 e

11.4 b-d

13 bc

0.1 dc

Legacy

Willhite

443 b-g

25.9 b-e

678 a-d

25.8 b-d

1.8 bc

7 a-e

11.7 a-d

40 a-c

0.3 a-d

Festival

Willhite

515 a-e

24.5 b-e

674 a-d

24.7 b-e

1.8 bc

8 a-e

11.8 a-d

25 a-c

0.3 b-d

Sangria

Syngenta

424 b-h

22.6 c-e

659 b-d

21.9 d-f

1.9 bc

19 a

12.4 a-d

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

Piñata

Willhite

185 f-i

26.6 b-d

653 b-d

21.8 d-f

1.8 bc

9 a-e

11.9 a-d

42 a-c

0.9 a

W X 24

Willhite

135 hi5

24.0 b-e

644 b-d

25.5 b-d

1.7 bc

13 a-e

11.0 d

50 ab

0.7 a-c

Falcon

Seminis

544 a-c

23.2 b-e

630 b-d

22.2 d-f

1.8 bc

10 a-e

12.5 a-d

0 c

0.0 d

Celebration

Syngenta

504 a-e

24.9 b-c

619 b-d

23.7 b-f

1.7 bc

13 a-e

11.7 a-d

25 a-c

0.6 a-d

Montreal

Sunseeds

467 b-f

20.6 e

609 b-d

20.3 f

2.0 bc

7 a-e

12.3 a-d

20 a-c

0.2 b-d

W X 190

Willhite

230 e-i

23.7 b-e

562 cd

22.3 d-f

1.6 bc

16 a-c

11.6 b-d

0 c

0.0 d

Margarita

Wilhite

409 b-h

26.1 b-d

557 cd

25.8 b-d

1.4 c

12 a-e

12.0 a-d

33 a-c

0.3 c-d

SWD 8307

Sakata

402 b-h

22.4 c-e

489 d

22.2 d-f

1.6 bc

17 ab

11.2 cd

0 c

0.0 d

1First of two harvests.
2Acre = 4840 lbf.
3Average flesh separation of those fruit sampled with hollowheart.
4By weight.
5Mean separation in columns by Duncan’s multiple range test, 5% level.

 

Spring 2001 GCREC Triploid Watermelon Cultigen Evaluation

The concept of triploid (seedless) watermelons was first described in the U.S. literature by Kihara in 1951 based on experimentation that began in 1939 in Japan. Seed for planting seedless watermelons results from a cross between a tetraploid female parent, developed by treating diploid lines with colchicine or by other means, and a diploid (normal) male parent. The resulting triploid plants are sterile and do not produce viable seed. However, small, rudimentary seeds develop which are eaten along with the flesh just as immature seeds are eaten in cucumber.

Fruit enlargement in seeded fruit, including watermelon, is enhanced by growth-promoting hormones produced by the developing seed. Growth hormones are lacking in seedless watermelons so those agents must be provided by pollen. Since flowers of triploid plants lack sufficient viable pollen to induce normal fruit set, diploid seeded watermelons are interplanted with triploids to serve as pollenizers. An adequate bee population is necessary to insure that sufficient transfer of pollen occurs. Seedless fruit (from triploid plants) tend to be triangular shaped without sufficient pollination.

Although the procedure for production of seedless watermelons has been known for about 50 years and commercial varieties have been available for many years, the interest in and acreage of seedless watermelons has remained small in Florida until recently. Erratic performance, poor seed germination, high seed costs, and inadequate varieties resulted in lack of interest in seedless watermelon production in the past, but most of the deterents have now been overcome. It is estimated that seedless watermelons now represent about 30% of the total production in Florida.

The objective of this trial was to evaluate the performance of triploid watermelon cultigens under west-central Florida conditions.

Seeds of 37 triploid watermelon varieties or experimental hybrids (Table 1) were planted in a peat-lite growing mix in planter flats (1 ¼ x 1 ¼ x 2 ¼ in. cells) on 23 January. The watermelon transplants were grown by a commercial plant grower.

The EauGallie fine sand was prepared in late January by incorporation of 0-0.8-0 lb N-P2O5-K2O per 100 linear bed feet (lbf). Beds were formed and fumigated with methylbromide:chloropicrin, 67:33 at 2.3 lb/100 lbf. Banded fertilizer was applied in shallow grooves on the bed shoulders at 3.1-0-4.3 lb N-P2O5-K2O/100 lbf after the beds were pressed and before the black polyethylene mulch was applied. The total fertilizer applied was equivalent to 150-40-208 lb N-P2O5-K2O/A. The final beds were 32-in. wide and 8-in. high, and were spaced on 9-ft centers with four beds between seepage irrigation/drainage ditches, which were on 41-ft centers.

The transplants were set in holes punched in the polyethylene mulch at 3-ft in-row spacing on 26 February. The replicated plots were 27 ft long and had nine plants each and were repeated three times in a randomized, complete block design. Diploid watermelons that were being evaluated were direct seeded in beds on each side of two triploid watermelon beds on 19 February to serve as diploid pollenizers. Plant stands recorded just before vines grew together showed no significant differences among plots. Weed control in row middles was by cultivation and applications of paraquat. Pesticides were applied as needed for control of silverleaf whitefly (endosulfan), gummy stem blight (chlorothalonil, azoxystrobin, mefenoxam, maneb, and thiophanate-methyl), and lepidopterous larvae (Bacillus thuringiensis, spinosad, and esfenvalerate).

Watermelons were harvested during the 24-30 May and 6-12 June periods. Marketable (U.S. No.1 or better) fruit according to U.S. Standards for Grades of Watermelons were separated from culls and counted and weighed individually. Fruit 10 lbs and larger were assumed to be marketable. Tetraploid fruit, where they occurred, were not included in the marketable category because they are not seedless. At least six fruit from each entry at each harvest were used to determine soluble solids (a measure of sweetness) with a digital, hand-held refractometer, polar and equatorial dimensions, rind thickness, flesh color, and the incidence and severity of hollowheart were noted.

Early yield, as represented by the first of two harvests, varied from 95 cwt/acre for Hazera 103 to 550 cwt/acre for ‘Millionaire’ (Table 1). Nineteen other entries had yields similar to those of ‘Millionaire’. Average fruit weights at the first harvest ranged from 13.9 lbs for ‘Imagination’ to 21.7 lbs for Seedway 4502.

Total yields (Table 1) ranged from 567 cwt/acre for ‘Revolution’ to 1149 cwt/acre for ‘Millionaire’. Twenty-three other entries produced yields significantly similar to those of ‘Millionaire’. Average fruit weight for the entire season varied from 14.5 lbs for ‘Imagination’ to 21.7 lbs ‘Revolution’. The number of fruit per plant ranged from 1.7 for ‘Revolution’ to 4.3 for ‘Millionaire’. Soluble solids concentrations varied from 12.0% for Seedway 4502 to 14.1% for ZG-8820. Accordingly, soluble solids in all entries far exceeded the 10% specified for optional use in the U.S. Standards for Grades of Watermelons to describe very good internal quality. The incidence of hollowheart in the fruit sampled ranged from 0% in ‘Super Seedless 7177’, ‘Tri-X Palomar’, ‘Trillion’ and ‘Super Seedless 7187’ to 58% in ‘Triple Crown’. Tetraploid plants were noted in several entries. The total number of tetraploid fruit produced follow: ‘Cooperstown’ (6), ‘Fandango’ (3), ‘Genesis’ (2), HMX 8914 (5), Seedway 4502 (5), ‘Sugar Shack’ (9), ‘Sugar Time’ (1), SWT 9708 (2). These fruit could not be sold as seedless watermelons so they were not included in the marketable yields.

Seedless watermelon variety trials have been conducted at this location each spring season since 1988. The highest yields ranged from 507 cwt/acre in 1996 to 1186 cwt/A in 1999. In spring 2001, 1149 cwt/acre was the highest yield which greatly exceeded the 844 cwt/acre average high yield during the entire period.

Based on results of this and previous trials, triploid hybrids, in alphabetical order, that should perform well in Florida include ‘Freedom’, ‘Genesis’, ‘Millionaire’, ‘Revere’, ‘Sugar Shack’ (for trial), ‘Sugar Time’ (for trial), ‘Super Seedless 7177’ (for trial), ‘Summersweet 5244’, ‘Summersweet 5544’, ‘Tri-X 313’, ‘Tri-X Carousel’, ‘Tri-X Palomar’, and ‘Tri-X Shadow’. ‘Triton’, a yellow-flesh variety should be evaluated for that niche market. Other varieties may perform well on individual farms.

A complete report of this trial can be obtained from the author at dnma@mail.ifas.ufl.edu

Table 1. Early and total yields, average fruit weight, fruit per plant, percentage of cull fruit, soluble solids and the incidence and severity of hollowheart of triploid watermelons. Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, Bradenton. Spring 2001.

 

 

Entry

 

 

Source

Early Harvest

Total Harvest

Weight (cwt/A)1

Avg Fruit Wt (lb)

Weight (cwt/A)1

Avg Fruit Wt (lb)

Fruit per Plant

Cull (%)3

Soluble Solids (%)

Hollowheart

(%)

(in.)2

Millionaire

Harris Moran

550 a4

18.6 a-f

1149 a

18.2 c-l

4.3 a

7 bc

13.1 a-d

8 bc

0.1 cd

Hazera 1032

Hazera

241 c-g

18.8 a-f

1140 ab

20.7 ab

3.7 a-c

10 bc

13.1 a-d

38 a-c

0.7 a-d

SWT 8705

Sakata

389 a-e

18.8 a-f

1098 a-c

18.1 c-l

3.9 ab

2 c

13.0 a-d

33 a-c

0.6 a-d

Sweetheart

Zeraim Gedera

394 a-e

18.4 a-f

1072 a-d

17.8 d-m

3.8 a-c

6 bc

13.0 a-d

8 bc

0.1 b-d

Tri-X 313

Syngenta

299 b-g

18.6 a-f

988 a-e

18.1 c-l

3.4 a-e

10 bc

13.0 a-d

8 bc

0.1 cd

Super Seedless 7177

Abbott & Cobb

508 ab

17.1 b-g

981 a-e

17.2 e-m

3.6 a-d

5 bc

13.0 a-d

0 c

0.0 d

YS00-5003

Hazera

270 c-g

19.0 a-f

956 a-e

20.2 a-c

2.9 b-e

10 bc

12.9 a-d

42 a-c

0.9 ab

ZG-8820

Zeraim Gedera

316 b-g

17.3 b-g

941 a-e

16.5 i-n

3.7 a-c

8 bc

14.1 a

25 a-c

0.3 b-d

Tri-X Palomar

Syngenta

346 a-f

16.3 d-g

927 a-f

15.8 l-n

3.6 a-c

10 bc

13.4 a-c

0 c

0.0 d

Sugar Shack

Sugar Creek

281 b-g

20.3 ab

920 a-f

19.3 b-g

3.2 a-e

9 bc

13.2 a-d

10 bc

0.1 cd

Sugar Time

Sugar Creek

439 a-d

16.7 c-g

916 a-f

16.4 i-n

3.4 a-e

9 bc

12.6 b-d

17 a-c

0.2 b-d

Gem Dandy

Willhite

326 a-g

15.8 fg

906 a-f

16.6 h-n

3.4 a-e

11 bc

12.8 b-d

10 bc

0.5 a-d

XWT 8706

Sakata

414 a-e

20.3 a

905 a-f

19.0 b-h

3.1 a-e

6 bc

12.8 b-d

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

Crispy Sweet

Zeraim Gedera

403 a-e

16.8 c-g

894 a-f

16.9 g-n

3.3 a-e

4 bc

13.4 a-c

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

Trillion

Abbott & Cobb

238 c-g

15.9 fg

880 a-f

16.5 i-n

3.3 a-e

8 bc

12.4 b-d

0 c

0.0 d

SWT 6703

Sakata

264 c-g

16.3 d-g

875 a-f

16.7 h-n

3.3 a-e

9 bc

13.0 a-d

10 bc

0.1 cd

HMX 8914

Harris Moran

449 a-d

18.1 b-f

866 a-f

17.4 e-m

3.2 a-e

16 a-c

13.3 a-c

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

YS00-6003

Hazera

100 g

19.6 a-e

853 a-f

19.4 b-f

2.9 b-f

6 bc

12.4 b-d

50 ab

1.1 a

Hazera 5005

Hazera

148 fg

19.2 a-f

846 a-f

19.4 b-e

2.7 b-f

6 bc

13.0 a-d

40 a-c

0.9 a-c

W X 55

Willhite

199 e-g

16.3 d-g

845 a-f

16.1 j-n

3.3 a-d

8 bc

13.4 a-c

17 a-c

0.3 a-d

Sunday Special

Hazera

509 ab4

16.2 d-g

843 a-f

16.0 k-n

3.3 a-e

15 a-c

12.3 cd

8 bc

0.1 b-d

RWT 8096

Syngenta

345 a-f

18.3 a-f

841 a-f

18.8 b-i

2.8 b-f

6 bc

12.4 b-d

10 bc

0.5 a-d

SWT 9708

Sakata

347 a-f

17.1 b-g

829 a-f

18.5 b-j

3.0 b-e

9 bc

13.3 a-c

8 bc

0.1 cd

ZG-8404

Zeraim Gedera

362 a-f

19.0 a-f

828 a-f

17.7 e-m

3.1 a-e

7 bc

13.5 ab

25 a-c

0.2 b-d

XWT 8707

Sakata

398 a-e

16.2 d-g

788 b-f

15.9 l-m

3.1 a-e

8 bc

13.2 a-d

25 a-c

0.4 a-d

Imagination

Syngenta

289 b-g

13.9 g

781 c-f

14.5 n

3.3 a-e

17 ab

12.6 b-d

33 a-c

0.5 a-d

Triple Crown

SeedWay

320 a-g

17.2 b-g

774 c-f

17.3 e-m

2.9 b-e

8 bc

13.4 a-c

58 a

0.8 a-d

Fandango

Shamrock

461 a-c

18.9 a-f

771 c-f

18.4 b-k

2.9 b-f

13 a-c

12.9 b-d

8 bc

0.4 a-d

Tri-X Carousel

Syngenta

279 b-g

18.3 a-f

768 c-f

17.5 e-m

2.8 b-f

5 bc

13.4 a-c

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

Super Seedless 7187

Abbott & Cobb

204 e-g

16.6 c-g

732 d-f

17.5 e-m

2.6 c-f

4 bc

12.3 b-d

0 c

0.0 d

Cooperstown

Seminis

224 d-g

17.5 b-g

715 d-f

16.9 g-n

2.6 c-f

14 a-c

12.8 b-d

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

Freedom

Sunseeds

409 a-e

18.4 a-f

712 d-f

18.0 c-l

2.5 c-f

5 bc

13.1 a-d

17 a-c

0.1 b-d

Seedway 4502

SeedWay

369 a-f

21.7 a

710 ef

20.1 a-d

2.3 d-f

14 a-c

12.0 d

8 bc

0.1 b-d

Disko

Hazera

217 d-g

16.1 e-g

680 ef

17.0 f-m

2.7 b-f

6 bc

13.2 a-c

20 a-c

0.3 b-d

Hazera 103

Hazera

95 g

19.8 a-d

677 ef

19.3 b-g

2.6 ef

6 bc

13.3 a-c

40 a-c

0.7 a-d

Genesis

Shamrock

313 b-g

16.4 d-g

646 ef

15.5 mn

2.7 b-f

25 a

12.9 a-d

17 a-c

0.2 b-d

Revolution

Sunseeds

348 a-f

20.1 a-c

567 f

21.7 a

1.7 ef

13 a-c

13.5 ab

40 a-c

0.5 a-d

1Acre = 4840 lbf.
2Average flesh separation of those fruit sampled with hollowheart.
3By weight.
4Mean separation in columns by Duncan’s multiple range test, 5% level.

 (Maynard - Vegetarian 01-11)

Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists

Daniel J. Cantliffe
Professor and Chairman, Horticultural Sciences Department
Mark A. Ritenour
Assistant Professor, postharvest

Timothy E. Crocker
Professor, deciduous fruits and nuts, strawberry

Ronald W. Rice
Assistant Professor, nutrition
John Duval
Assistant Professor, strawberry
Steven A. Sargent
Professor and Editor, postharvest
Chad Hutchinson
Assistant Professor, vegetable production
Eric Simonne
Assistant Professor, vegetable nutrition
Elizabeth M. Lamb
Assistant Professor, production
William M. Stall
Professor, weed control
Yuncong Li
Assistant Professor, soils
James M. Stephens
Professor, vegetable gardening
Donald N. Maynard
Professor, varieties
Charles S. Vavrina
Associate Professor, transplants
Stephen M. Olson
Professor, small farms
James M. White
Associate Professor, organic farming

Related Links:
University of Florida
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
Horticultural Sciences Department
Florida Cooperative Extension Service
North Florida Research and Education Center - Suwannee Valley

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