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ative Photo: Aarti Khale
Common name: Watermelon • Hindi: तरबूज़ Tarbooz • Manipuri: ꯇꯔꯕꯨꯖ Tarbuj • Marathi: Kadu vrindavana • Telugu: Eriputccha • Kannada: ಕಲ್ಲಂಗಡಿ ಬಳ್ಳಿ Kallangadi balli • Bengali: Tormuj • Urdu: Tarbooz • Gujarati: ઇંદ્રક Indrak • Mizo: Dawnfawh
Botanical name: Citrullus lanatus    Family: Cucurbitaceae (Pumpkin family)
Synonyms: Citrullus vulgaris

Watermelon is the favourite summer fruit in the hot and dry regions of India. It is common sight to see vendors with huge fruits piled under a tree. Watermelon is an annual herbacious vine with long (up to 10 m) stems lying or creeping on the ground, with curly tendrils. Leaves are 5-20 by 3-19 cm, and hairy, usually deeply palmately lobed with 3-5 lobes. Leaf stalks are 2-19 cm long. Male flowers on 1.2-4.5 cm long pedicels. Flowers 1-2.5 cm long, pale green. Flowers monoecious, solitary, on pedicels up to 4.5 cm long; with 5 shortly united petals, pale green. Fruit of wild plants 1.5-20 cm in diameter, nearly spherical, greenish, mottled with darker green; of cultivated plants up to 30x60 cm, spherical or ellipsoid, green or yellowish, evenly coloured or variously mottled or striped. Fruits vary considerably in morphology. The cultivated forms of the fruit are large oblong.

Identification credit: Aarti Khale Photographed in Siranagar & Mumbai.

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