This research was to examine the differences in post-harvest quality of melons depending on the harvest time after fruit setting. Musk melon cultivar ‘K3’ plants were grown in glass house conditions with a hydroponic system, and the fruits were harvested at 50, 60, and 70 days after fruit setting. The post-harvest characteristics of melons stored at 7℃ were measured over 32 days. The harvested fruits at 50, 60, 70 days after fruit setting did not differ significantly in weight, height, or size. Solid sugar content was highest in the fruits harvested at 70 days after fruit setting, but firmness, L* value, and respiration rate were highest in the fruits harvested at 50 days after fruit setting. When the harvested melons were stored at 7℃, ‘K3’ melons responded differently according to the harvest days after fruit setting. The major changes during storage of ‘K3’ melons can be summarized as follows: Firmness, respiration, moisture content, and general appearance index during storage were highest in the melons harvested at 50 days after fruit setting, but soluble solid content, fresh weight loss, and sensory evaluation were high in the melons harvested at 60 and 70 days after one. During storage at 7℃, there were no significant differences in the appearance of ‘K3’ melons harvested at different periods after fruit setting, but difference in soluble solid content and taste were noted. It is recommended that the fruit of ‘K3’ melon plants be harvested about 60 days after fruiting to provide consumers with the highest quality for taste and for storage.
Figures & Tables
Fruit appearance of ‘K3’ melon at different harvest days (50, 60, 70 days) after fruit set.