Georgia watermelon season kicks off with ‘quality’ crop
Sweet, refreshing Georgia watermelon is in a store near you. The 2019 watermelon crop is expected to have the crisp, sweet flavor and high quality unique to Georgia watermelon.
Georgia growers report that after two years of unpredictable and extreme weather patterns, this growing season has been smooth. While initial reports show overall acreage for Georgia are down, the yields and quality look to be outstanding.
“The weather for this year’s growing season has been good so far,” said GWA President, Rob Greene. “It is getting hot quickly, and that is watermelon weather.” Greene is owner of Lime Creek Farms in Arabi, Georgia.
Planting for Georgia’s watermelon crop begins in March. From planting to harvest, watermelons typically need 90 days to grow, ripen, and be ready for harvest. With more than 18,000 acres of watermelon harvested on average each year, the state of Georgia ranks in the top 4 in the Unites States for production among Texas, Florida, and California.
Georgia watermelon entered stores on June 10. Consumers can pick up watermelon in local stores and markets throughout the southeast. The 2019 GWA Queen Ambassador, Meredith McGlamory, will be in stores this summer to help consumers pick out the perfect watermelon. As the 2019 GWA Queen, McGlamory travels throughout Georgia, the southeast and even to areas of Canada to promote and educate consumers on watermelon.
The 2019 GWA Queen visited several schools this spring throughout the state to speak with students about watermelon. “Every school visit is different,” she said. “The kids range from pre-K to 8th grade and they are always excited to learn new things about watermelon,” she said.
The Georgia Watermelon Association also plans to partner with the Atlanta Braves this summer for several special promotions. Runners at the annual Braves Country 5k on June 1 can enjoy a slice of refreshing watermelon at the finish line, and fans attending Braves baseball games on July 4-5 will get a handheld watermelon fan to help keep them cool.
On social media, consumers can participate in the Georgia watermelon sweepstakes by submitting photos featuring ways to enjoy watermelon and win a prize each week. Visit www.facebook.com/gawatermelons for more information.
The Georgia Watermelon Association is the trade organization for members of the Georgia watermelon industry. The GWA mission is to promote the industry from production to consumption. For more information, visit www.georgiawatermelonassociation.org.
For more information, visit Vegetable Growers News.