Will seeds from a store-bought watermelon germinate?

I bought a fresh whole watermelon from the grocery store a few days ago. It’s very good.

I’ve heard that some other store-bought fruits/vegetables are non-reproducing due to their being hybrids or somesuch.

In short, if I put these watermelon seeds in between some sheets of damp paper towel, a la the old elementary school bean germination project, should I expect them to sprout? Will it matter if the melon in question was refrigerated?

They will probably germinate; there are sterile watermelon cultivars (but you probably haven’t got one, as I think these are the ‘seedless’ type) and it’s possible that you have a fruit from an F1 hybrid plant, but even so, you’ll probably still get something.

If you want to try to actually produce melons, you’ll probably need to let the seeds dry out on a paper towel, store them in a cool, dark, dry place and plant them in pots next spring, so that they have a full growing season to mature properly.

They mat germinate or they may not, depending on what partiucular variety you have. As you say, some varieties are sterile hybrids, but many aren’t.

Refrigeration shouldn’t matter so long as it didn’t freeze.

I cant specificaly say with watermeleon seeds, but it would probably be better if you wanted to grow them to just use store bought seed, they are cheap and easy to obtain. I bet they give a better germination rate since they are made for that urpose.

I once had to run a bulldozer in the spoil area of a sewage treatment plant at Hilton Head. The solids left after the water is treated are piled up until they can be trucked out. It was in May and I remember there were beautiful watermolens and cantelopes and tomatoes growing in the spoils. I assume that the seeds were washed down the drain from resturaunts. I don’t see any reason why someone would plant produce in a spoil area.

The seeds could have come in as part of the solid waste…

Keep in mind that the fruit/vegetable you get a seed from, may not (is likely not) be a good indication of the quality of the fruit/vegetable that would grow from the seed you choose.

The fruit/vegetable’s quality is determined by the seed that turned into the plant that GREW that fruit/vegetable. The seed you’ve pulled out to plant yourself was created by a combination of the “mother” plant, and an additional polinator. The additional polinator may/may not be a member of the same exact variety, or the original parent plants were not yet stable varieties yet.

You can get some very interesting things, and that’s often how we get new things like hot peppers, and tomatoes variety.

I’m personally planning to plant quite a few of my current hot pepper crops seeds, just to see if I get some really freaky seeds! I’m currently growing about 30 plants, of 6 different types.

I’ve certainly had plenty of tomato plants pop up in my garden, coming from the previous years fruit droppage. The resultant fruit was good, but I’m not sure it was entirely “on variety”, though, I tend to grow mostly the same type of tomato (or closely related varietials).

The solid waste was not so solid when it came in. When sewage is treated, the water is made safe to return to the environment (evaporate/drain away). Not all sewage is water, though, the solids left behind have to be dealt with in a more proactive manner, i.e. pile up until this becomes space prohibitive, then truck out at night.

Well, that’s kind of what I meant. Folks eat watermelons and cantaloupes and happen to swallow some seeds (or eat them seeds and all, as some people I know do). The seeds exit the usual way and get flushed, treated with the sewage, and dumped in the spoils area. Ta-da! Instant raw milorganite!

Every year I get volunteer watermelons, pumpkins, tomatoes, cukes, squash and a few mysterious plants from our mulch and compost piles. We pick up bags of leaves and yard clippings that have been set out for the trash and recycle them in our own yard so new things pop up sometimes. It’s always interesting to see what you get from the volunteers.

Watermelons aren’t like apples, the seeds should grow true. The exception is if the watermelon from which you got the seeds was grown near a closely related type; it could have cross-pollinated and you could end up with something funky. But this is pretty unlikely.

FWIW, most grocery store fruits and vegetables are grown less for flavor than for conformity and for travelling well. You’d probably end up with a better watermelon if you get the seeds from a seed catalog.

That happens, but there are a LOT more plants than seeds that can pass through the human system. A more likely explanation is: the resturants that prepare said produce flushes the seed down the drain. Either way, you should see the size of watermelons growing along side tampon applicators (maybe that’s TMI). :smiley:


In my hometown, they used to have “tomato plant” day where you could go and collect the partially grown tomato plans from the sewage treatment plant’s settling ponds. I was given to understand that the tomato seeds had usually passed througha dn that’s how they wound up in the sewage.

Couldn’t the seeds just be wind blown? In my neighborhood, almost everybody has tomato plants popping up all over their yards—we’ve been spraying the damn things with Roundup to try to get rid of them.

Tomato seeds grow in a big, giant, fleshy, heavy fruit. Some varieties weigh a pound or more. How exactly would the wind blow them anywhere? It’s far more likely that they’re being carried in the digestive tracts of birds or deer or smaller fruit-thieving animals and being “planted” with the products of digestion in various yards.

If you eat watermelon seeds dont they sprout in your stomache and try to grow out? :eek:
least thats what my brother told me when I was nine