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Q: Do watermelons ripen after they are picked?

Q:  I know it is the end of the watermelon season but we just bought a seedless one.  Do watermelons ripen after they are picked?

A: Once a watermelon is removed from the vine, it will no longer be able to become sweeter.  Other fruit such as some citrus, grapes, cherries, blackberries, and strawberries do not ripen or sweeten further after they are picked.  So be sure you pick the best and eat them soon after selection. However, some fruit will ripen after picking and a few examples of those are bananas, avocados, fig, apples, peaches, pears and plums. Seedless watermelons are sterile hybrids which develop fruits, but no seeds. The seeds for growing them are produced by crossing a normal watermelon with one changed genetically by treatment with a chemical called colchicine. The seeds from this cross will produce plants that, when pollinated with pollen from normal plants, produce seedless melons.  Attached is a short publication on seedless watermelon from the University of Florida: