Citrullus lanatus ‘Cekirdegi Oyali’ (Watermelon) [12 Seeds]


Germination Information: Like other watermelons, ‘Cekirdegi Oyali’ grows best in warm conditions and doesn’t like to be chilled, particularly at the start of the growing season. In areas with long seasons, you could sow the seeds directly in your garden, about 1 inch deep, when the soil temperature reaches about 70°F.  In most areas, you’re probably better off giving the plants a jump-start by starting the seeds indoors, on a heat mat, around a week before your usual last frost date. (I put three seeds in a 4-inch pot and then set them out as a group.) Move the plants to your garden a few weeks later, once the soil has warmed.

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A homegrown watermelon is always a wonderful treat, and ‘Cekirdegi Oyali’ doesn’t disappoint, with relatively small (3- to 4-pound), rounded fruits that have green skin and pinkish red flesh. Its key feature, through, is its gorgeous seeds. Just look at the photo and you can see for yourself! Full sun. Annual.

A few further notes: I grew this Turkish heirloom for the first time in 2020 and harvested the very first melon when I thought it was ripe, based on the fact that the stem-end tendril had turned brown, the underside had turned yellowish, and the fruit gave the right “thunk” sound for a ripe melon when tapped. When I cut it open, though, the flesh color didn’t seem fully developed, and the seeds were tan, not black. Those seeds did turn black and develop their beautiful “carved” markings as they dried, but I set them aside just to admire; they are not what I am selling. I left the following melons on the vine 2 to 3 weeks past when I thought they should be ready, and the results were much better: the flavor was sweeter and the seeds were black, so I feel sure that those seeds were mature. They had some markings are harvest time and they developed further on drying. Those are the seeds that you will receive.

Harvested in September 2020. At least 12 seeds.


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