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Harlem's Black Seed Brothers have all the sweet, Southern watermelon you're craving. Yes—with seeds.

Updated: May 30, 2021

Harlem's Black Seed Brothers sell sweet Southern watermelon with seeds
Four of the Black Seed Brothers at the stand on Lenox Avenue and 139th Street.

The minute summer comes to Harlem, watermelon vendors begin popping up all along the big avenues.

But there's one seller that stands out from the rest, with an extra-long bin holding row upon row of sweet watermelons trucked straight from the South.

Run by a team known as the Black Seed Brothers, the stand sits on the northeast corner of Lenox Avenue and 139th Street—with a second, smaller location in front of the Schomburg Center on 135th Street (the adjacent Health Station food truck is part of the same business).

The Black Seed Brothers sell old-fashioned watermelon with black seeds dotting the flesh.

The brothers—some related by blood, some friends—bring up to 1,000 freshly-picked melons per week from the farms of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida.

Unlike the seedless hybrid variety now common in every supermarket, theirs is old-fashioned, with black seeds dotting the flesh. (Some say the seeded kind has more flavor and a better texture.)

"Real black seeds from the dirt," says Johann, one of the brothers, explaining that folks come from all over the city to buy their watermelon, both red and yellow ($12-$20).

The stand on Lenox Avenue and 139th Street.

Adds Tyrell, a second member of the group, "When you see the black seeds, you know they're the original."

Another way you'll soon be able to tell: Black Seed Brothers-branded fruit stickers, extolling the health benefits of watermelon (like helping with digestion and hydration).

The Black Seed Brothers' stand on 139th Street is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more information, contact or follow them on their Instagram account, @blackseedbrothers.

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Crystal Rogers
Crystal Rogers
Apr 29, 2023

Will they be in Harlem in 2023? I just found out about the Black Seed Brothers, and have been spreading the word to many in NY, NJ and across the country.


Toni Anderson
Toni Anderson
Aug 01, 2020

Will make sure I support as soon as a get in this area#love being from uptown!

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