Muskmelons are a genus of vine-growing, warm-season vegetables that are commonly considered to be fruits. Native to India, muskmelon species include cantaloupe, honeydew melon, casaba melon, crenshaw melon and several other varietals of sweet and scented melon. Muskmelons ripen on the vine and can be stored at room temperature for three to five days and refrigerated for longer storage period up to roughly five to seven days before the flavor and texture degrade.
Wait to harvest muskmelons as long as possible because they will not develop any more more natural sugars once they are removed from the vine. Muskmelons ripened on the vine are the sweetest and juiciest.
Smell and touch the melon to determine ripeness. Fully-ripe melons will give off a musky, sweet scent and the bloom end will yield to gentle pressure from your thumb.
Store muskmelons at room temperature out of direct sunlight for up to five days after harvesting. Allow your muskmelon to soften during this time and they will become juicier and richer in flavor but not considerably sweeter.