The history of watermelon is almost as rich as the fruit itself. The ancient Egyptians depicted watermelons in their art and there are mentions of watermelons in Sanskrit texts from the 6th century BC. Watermelons of old were in some ways quite different from today’s summertime treat. They were smaller and had far less of the succulent red "flesh" that is so treasured today. But watermelons they were nonetheless.
Because those of us at CBD beverages are so enamored of the crisp, refreshing taste of our Sparkling CBD Watermelon Soda we thought we’d provide you with another eleven juicy facts about the watermelon. So here goes.
Sit back with a can of our refreshing Watermelon Sparkling Soda and enjoy these tasty tidbits of information about everyone’s favorite summertime treat.
Watermelon’s scientific name is citrullus lanatus. While that sounds perfectly okay to most people the fact is "lanatus" means "hairy" or "wooly". Anyone who's ever seen a watermelon knows they have a hard, shiny and very smooth skin. So what gives? In this case, lanatus refers not to the fruit itself but to the small hair-like growths protruding from the stems and leaves of the plant.
Most people now adore watermelon for its succulently sweet taste. But it wasn't always so. Originally watermelon was prized for its ultra-high water content (more than 90% of the content inside the rind is actually water). Now given the fact that the ancient Egyptians were surrounded by desert in all directions their affinity for watermelon begins to make a lot more sense.
The watermelon is a member of the cucurbitaceae family. Technically categorized as "pepo" berries, the cucurbitaceae family also includes gourds such as pumpkins and cucumbers that share watermelon’s hard, thick rind and seeds. While the berry categorization is fairly technical it's not that strange if you compare watermelons to something like seeded grapes, which are also mostly water and are considered both fruit and berry.
Scientists have been trying for centuries to figure out the exact origins of the watermelon with little success. They have narrowed its ancestry down to three possibilities but none has yet proven its primacy over the others. Those three possible ancestors are the citron melon from southern Africa, the egusi melon of western Africa and the gurma plant native to Egypt and the northern African desert regions.
In 2013 a gentleman named Chris Kent, a native of Sevierville, TN, cultivated a watermelon that achieved a final weight of 350 and ½ pounds. The monstrous melon wound up earning Kent an entry into the Guinness Book of World Records.
Watermelon’s incredible juiciness has always been one of its major appeals. So much so that some 2,500 years ago sailors in the eastern Mediterranean would take watermelons along on their sea voyages to provide fresh water. It was also this practice that brought watermelon to the attention of the ancient Greeks and other Europeans.
Watermelon and ancient Egypt had a long and fruitful relationship. Think about it: there is more time between when the pyramids were built and the birth of Julius Caesar than there is between Caesar and the present day. When king Tut’s tomb was uncovered exactly 100 years ago Howard Carter and his team found watermelon seeds, presumably so the boy king could grow his own in the afterlife. We're pretty sure he would approve of our watermelon-flavored Sparkling CBD Soda.
Everyone today recognizes watermelon by its distinctive red interior, which by the way forms a lovely color complement with the green exterior. But watermelons weren’t always red on the inside. As recently as medieval times they were largely white inside with only small indications of red here and there. Over time, as they were bred to be increasingly sweet, the red flesh expanded its domain until it wound up taking over. You can still find watermelons with the ancient white-ish interior, although they’re pretty rare.
Back in the 5th century BC the Greek physician Hippocrates (he of the "Hippocratic oath") recommended watermelon to treat heat stroke. In some cases, he would recommend imbibing on the succulent flesh. In other cases, he would place the cool, wet watermelon rind on the patient's head to cool them down. No statistics are available regarding his success rate.
Everyone from gym rats to professional athletes appreciate watermelon for its ability to fill the hydration void after a tough workout. But it’s more than just the water in watermelon these athletically inclined folks are after. Watermelon also happens to be a good source of electrolytes such as potassium that are lost when we sweat.
Every year on August 3rd the U.S. celebrates National Watermelon Day. If you didn’t know, well, you know now. So we’ll expect that in the days leading up to NWD next year that you’ll be placing a large order with CBD Drinks for our deliciously refreshing watermelon Sparkling CBD Soda!