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Melons are other crops that are sometimes deliberately stressed with saltwater at the end of the fruit-production cycle in order to encourage the plant to produce sweeter fruit.
Conventional growers withhold water during fruit development to create the beneficial stress that produces sweeter melons.
The production of more sugars in stressed plant cells is a natural reaction, because stress will remind a plant of its own mortality and urge the plant to produce materials that will increase the chances of success for the next generation.
Stressed melon plants will push more sugars into the developing fruits because this will give the seeds in the fruit a better chance of being eaten by animals and dispersed appropriately for future germination.