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Wonderful Watermelon

 

Summer is winding down, but you can hold on to the last sweet days of summer with the ultimate summer treat- Watermelon!

While watermelon is a symbol of summer in America and is as American as apple pie, America can’t lay claim to its origin. Watermelons originated in the Kalahari Desert and were brought to this country by African slaves. Watermelon got its name from being a melon that is mostly water. In fact, it is 92% water and ancient travelers used it as a source of transportable water.
The first watermelon harvest was held in Egypt approximately 5000 years ago and is depicted in the art and hieroglyphs found on ancient Egyptian buildings; its seeds and leaves have even been found in Egyptian tombs.

Today, there are watermelon festivals held throughout the summer to pay tribute to this refreshing treat and August 3rd is National Watermelon Day. So, whether you like watermelon with feta cheese as they do in Israel and Egypt, snack on its roasted seeds as they do in Asia, or eat it plain, now is a great time to enjoy and learn more about the wonderful watermelon.

 

Did you know?


More than 1200 varieties of watermelons are grown in more than 96 countries.

• China ranks number one in watermelon production.
• The Japanese developed a square watermelon.
• Watermelons weigh from 5-40 pounds, but some can grow as large as 100 pounds.
• Watermelons are members of the Curcurbitaceae family, which makes it a relative of pumpkins, cucumbers and squash.

Juicy Titles


Watermelon Day
Appelt, Kathi
Young Jesse waits all summer for her watermelon to ripen.
Watermelon Wishes
Moser, Lisa
When Charlie spends the summer growing watermelons with his grandfather, his secret wish is to do it all over again the next year.
One Cool Watermelon
Tofts, Hannah
Presents photographs of fruits and vegetables to demonstrate counting from one to ten.

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