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Watermelons everywhere in New Orleans

Watermelons planted by Katrina in St. Bernard Parish

This one is puzzling thousands of people. St. Bernard Parish, virtually wiped out following Hurricane Katrina, is seeing the spontaneous growth of watermelons. They're everywhere!  It's a post-Katrina phenomenon that has even the experts baffled.

"I've never seen anything like this before," said Dr. Ron Strahan of the LSU Ag Center as he surveyed the watermelon infestation. 


The fruit, which is normally planted in April, has been sprouting up all over St. Bernard Parish ever since Katrina.  Presumably, the seeds were deposited during the hurricane and unusually high temperatures have produced a natural mystery.

"It's just going to be one of those things we're probably not going to be able to explain," said Strahan.

According to Strahan, the clay in St. Bernard absorbed the sunlight, retaining the heat and allowing the melons to grow.  A watermelon's consistency is 90 percent water, which means if you eat the St. Bernard Parish melons, you're drinking Katrina juice.

"I don't think I'd want to eat them," Strahan laughed.  "I don't think so, but it's just something unusual to look at, maybe take some pictures of and remember this happened after Katrina 2005 and we'll probably never see again." 

Katrina may have planted the melons, but bees had to pollinate them, which indicates that growth is possible in St. Bernard Parish following the storm.  Even if it is Katrinan melons.

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