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Texas Agriculture Matters! Texas watermelons contribute almost $90 million annually to our state’s economy. Grown on farms stretching from the Rio Grande Valley up to the High Plains and from East Texas to the Trans-Pecos, watermelons nourish Texans and the Texas economy – enabling our producers and state to continue to be recognized leaders in the global marketplace.
– Sid Miller, Agriculture Commissioner
The first recorded watermelon harvest occurred nearly 5,000 years ago in Egypt.
Over 1,200 varieties of watermelons are grown worldwide in 96 countries.
Watermelons are 92% water.
Watermelon's official name is Citrullus Lanatus of the botanical family Curcurbitaceae. It is cousins to cucumbers, pumpkins and squash.
By weight, watermelon is the most-consumed melon in the U.S., followed by cantaloupe and honeydew.
Early explorers used watermelons as canteens.
The first cookbook published in the U.S. in 1776 contained a recipe for watermelon rind pickles.
In 1990, Bill Carson of Arrington, TN grew the largest watermelon at 262 pounds that is still on the record books (1998 ed. Guinness Book of World Records).
TEXAS IS ONE OF THE TOP FOUR WATERMELON PRODUCERS IN THE COUNTRY, GROWING 15% OF THE TOTAL DOMESTIC CROP. LAST YEAR, TEXAS PRODUCED OVER 600 MILLION LBS OF WATERMELON.