My cousin sent of picture of a man hauling watermelon in the back of her truck, with the question..
"Does this remind you of anything?"
That text took me back to my childhood, and precious memories of my grandfather. He was a farmer and raised animals, vegetables, and fruit, including of course watermelon.
Coming up I was always aware of where food comes from... my grandparents house. I knew vegetables and fruit were picked from fields, gardens, trees, or bushes, while meat was raised and then slaughtered for us to eat. I used to love watching my grandmother go to the hen house, and come back with brown eggs!
Each summer the bed of granddaddy's truck was always loaded with watermelon. Even after he retired from farming, he still sold watermelon. Although not available all season long, the yellow watermelon has to be my favorite. They're generally available in July, catch them if you can!
No matter how many watermelon were stacked on the back of that truck, granddaddy knew how to pick the ones that were ripe to sweet perfection. He'd say it was all in the thud.
One of my favorite local places to buy Arkansas watermelon, is Carpenter's Produce! Recently, I was given a lesson by one of the sister's on how to pick a watermelon.
1. Hit the middle of the melon, and listen. She hit several watermelon, letting me hear the difference in the sounds.
2. You should hear a hollow sound. That thud my granddaddy talked about. "Normally, but not every time," she warned "this means it's a good watermelon."
Sure enough, just like she said... it was a good one... Arkansas sweet! I know watermelon are grown in other parts of the world, but there is nothing like an Arkansas grown watermelon, and a great festival!
Do you have a fool proof way to pick a watermelon?
The Carpenter family has been farming fruits and vegetables, and feeding families for 50 years Their farm is located in Grady, Arkansas, and have produce stores in several locations in Arkansas, along with attending farmer's markets. In 2011 Abraham Carpenter, and family were inducted into the Arkansas Black Hall of Fame for agriculture entrepreneurship.
Disclaimer: I was not giving any compensation of any kind for writing this article. The idea for the article, and thoughts for this post are all my own.