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Cantaloupes are of European origin. The European melon has a warty rind and scented, yellow flesh. It is not exported. North America cantaloupe is actually a muskmelon and features raised, netted skin and sweet, orange flesh. They are available June to November. Cantaloupes picked before they mature never reach full flavor. A good melon is symmetrical and the blossom end gives with slight pressure. Avoid overripe melons with lumps or soft spots. Cantaloupes become more more
Plums color include yellow, green, red, purple, and indigo blue. Sizes vary from 1 to 3 inches in diameter. Depending on the variety, the flesh tastes sweet to tart. All prunes are plums, but not all plums are prunes. Plums are available from May through October, with peak supplies between July and September. Choose firm plums that give slightly to palm pressure. Avoid plums with cracks, soft spots or brown spots. Ripen at room temperature, more
Watermelons are oblong and large, up to 30 pounds. The rind is hard, and dark or light green, depending on the variety. Yellow or golden watermelon tastes the same as red, but has bright-yellow flesh. Watermelons are available from May through September. Avoid melons with a flat side. The skin should be dull, not shiny. Slap the melon and listen for a hollow thump. Refrigerate for no more than a week.