In February 2015 at the National Convention for the third consecutive year, Sakata made a monetary contribution based on sales of its triploid watermelon varieties to the National Watermelon Association. In addition to the contribution, Sakata donated over 50,000 young watermelon plants for auctions at the National Convention, as well as four other regional shows, including Florida, Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina conventions. Auction winners will receive 10,000 young triploid watermelon plants of either Bold Ruler or Affirmed. Plants will be shipped through Sakata’s recently launched Watermelon Plant Program for the Southeast. This program makes young transplants of Bold Ruler and Affirmed (as well as Ace and SSX8585 pollinizers) available to order through select distributors, bringing more convenience and value to growers.

Watermelon Plant Auction Winners

National Watermelon Association Convention Winner: Mike Horrall of Melon Acres in Oaktown, IN

Florida Watermelon Association Winner: Melon 1 in Brooklyn, NY

Georgia Watermelon Association: Johnny Davis of D&D Farms in Lenox, GA

Alabama Watermelon Association: Rantz Smith of Smith Farms in Trenton, FL

South Carolina Watermelon Association: Bradley O’Neal of Coosaw Farms in Fairfax, SC

Over $10,000 has been raised for regional watermelon associations through donated plants. The next auction will be held March 13-14 in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina at the North Carolina Watermelon Association’s Annual Convention. Another 10,000 plants will be auctioned to the highest bidder and will raise money for the North Carolina Watermelon Association.