Watermelon... Is it a Fruit or a Vegetable? / by George Geary

Watermelon.. Is it a Fruit or a Vegetable? 
Watermelon is a Fruit.
 It depends on where you get your information and which you believe. Watermelon is the fruit of a plant originally from a vine of southern Africa. The watermelon fruit, loosely considered a type of melon, has a smooth exterior rind and a juicy, sweet, usually red interior flesh. 

Like the pepper, tomato, and pumpkin, watermelon is botanically a fruit. According to Webster’s dictionary and Wikipedia, a fruit is the ripened ovary of a seed plant and its contents, and a watermelon is a large oblong roundish fruit.

Consumers use watermelon primarily as a fruit because of its sweet flavor and refreshing qualities.


Watermelon is Also a Vegetable

According to Webster’s dictionary a vegetable is anything made or obtained from plants. Watermelon is a member of the cucurbitaceae plant family of gourds, related to the cucumber, squash, and pumpkin. It is planted from seeds or seedlings, harvested, and then cleared from the field like other vegetables. Since watermelon is grown as a vegetable crop using vegetable production systems, watermelon is considered a vegetable.

Watermelon is used as a Fruit or a Vegetable

Watermelon is popularly used as a fruit, to be a sweet enhancer or fun accompaniment to our everyday meals.  The watermelon is often cut into bite-sized squares or balled, or very often simply sliced and enjoyed.  It’s also used in the types of recipes that are created using fruit.

However, the whole watermelon is edible, even the rind.  In places like China, the watermelon is stir-fried, stewed and often pickled.  In this case, the watermelon is being used as a vegetable.  Pickled watermelon rind is also widespread in Russia.

I personally like to use seeded melon as I feel that it much more flavorful. 

Here is a great drink recipe: Watermelon Rum Punch. Try it on one of these hot summer days! 


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