Melons, which are part of the Cucurbitaceae family, come in a wide range of shapes, sizes, colors and flavors. Well-known melon varieties, such as watermelon, cantaloupe and honeydew are readily available year-round at local grocery stores and farm markets across the United States.
Canary, casaba, crenshaw and Santa Claus are all winter melon varieties known for their long growing season and long shelf life. "True Cantaloupe," a European variety that originated in Cantalupo, Italy, features rough, bumpy skin unlike the net-like textured skin of American cantaloupe varieties. All parts of Oriental melons, which weigh approximately 1 pound, are edible, including the rind and seeds. Mediterranean and Rochet melon varieties have white flesh.