CITRON RED SEEDED WATERMELON is a centuries-old heirloom grown not for fresh eating since its white flesh is inedible raw, but rather for making preserves and sweetmeats used in fruitcakes, cookies and puddings. The best fruits can be stored for up to a year. Extremely productive. 90-100 days. 25 seeds.
FRUIT BLOTCH DISEASE WAIVER: All watermelons are susceptible to fruit blotch. Without spraying chemicals and treating seeds (which we do not do), we cannot guarantee that our watermelon seeds will produce plants that are not susceptible. Thus, when you purchase any watermelon seed from CherryGal.com you are accepting that risk. This is most important for market growers, but also a concern for any watermelon growers. We would rather save the environment and sacrifice a few sales.
CITRON CONSERVE: Cut the citron into 1/2" slices, peel, remove the red seeds and cut into cubes. Cover with a weak brine of 1 teaspoon salt to 1 quart water and let stand overnight. Drain and place over low heat adding a little water from time to time to keep it from burning and cook until just tender. For every 6 cups of fruit add 2 cups of sugar and the grated rind and juice of one lemon. Bring slowly to a boil and cook until citron is transparent without letting it get mushy. Pour into sterlized jars and seal. You can then use this in other recipes calling for citron.
GROWING TIPS: Pick a sunny protected location and prepare the soil for a heavy feeder. Regular watering also important. Whether planting directly or as seedlings, check the days to maturity because watermelons need lots of summertime and space to produce. They are not frost hardy. Although plastic mulches are all the rage these days, I am still untrusting of them and whether they may leach into the soil. I prefer a straw mulch - needed to keep the weeds down and moisture in once the rambling leafy vines start growing. Do not be dismayed when the earliest flowers do not produce fruit. This is because the early ones are the male flowers. Later female flowers will bear fruit, but watermelons do need honey bees for pollination, so plant flowers nearby that will attract them all season and please do not use pesticides in your garden that are harmful to bees (even some organics can hurt bees). The more time you spend in your garden, weeding watering and feeding, the fewer pests you will have because your plants will be strong and viable with all that attention and you will be alert to problems before they get out of hand. It takes some practice to know when to harvest watermelons. Watch the ground spot - it will change color. Usually from pale green or white, to cream or yellow. If you are really practiced, you will be able to tell the sound of a ripe melon by tapping it.