Calamondin Orange (Citrofortunella microcarpa)

Tree
C. mitis. (Blanco.)J.Ingram.&H.E.Moore.
Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Calamondin Orange
Citrofortunella microcarpa
Rutaceae

None known

  • Medicinal Use

    None known

  • Edible Use

    Fruit – raw or cooked. Very acid, they are usually pickled, preserved or used in drinks, teas, marmalades, chutneys etc[183]. They can be used in all the ways that lemons or limes are used[200]. The fruit is less acid than a lemon and makes a very acceptable raw fruit, especially if eaten with the skin which has a pleasant sweet flavour[K]. The whole fruit is fried in coconut oil with various seasonings and is eaten with curry[183]. The fruit is about 25 – 35mm in diameter[200].

    The preserved peel is used as a flavouring in other foods[183].

  • Cautionary Notes

    None known

Cultivation & Habitat

The following notes are based on Citrus species. They are probably applicable here as well, even though this is a bi-generic hybrid, since any seed might be produced polyembrionically. The seed is best sown in a greenhouse as soon as it ripe after thoroughly rinsing it[164, 200]. Sow stored seed in March in a greenhouse[3]. Germination usually takes place within 2 – 3 weeks at 13¡c. Seedlings are liable to damp off so they must be watered with care and kept well ventilated. The seed is usually polyembrionic, two or more seedlings arise from each seed and they are genetically identical to the parent but they do not usually carry any virus that might be present in the parent plant[200]. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least three growing seasons before trying them outdoors. Plant them out in the summer and give them some protection from the cold for their first few winters outdoors. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Layering in October.
Requires a position in full sun in a fertile well-drained but not dry soil[188]. Prefers a moderately heavy loam with a generous amount of compost and sand added and a very sunny position[1, 200]. When growing plants in pots, a compost comprising equal quantities of loam and leafmould plus a little charcoal should produce good results[260]. Do not use manure since Citrus species dislike it[260]. When watering pot plants it is important to neither overwater or underwater since the plant will soon complain by turning yellow and dying. Water only when the compost is almost dry, but do not allow it to become completely dry[260]. Plants are not very hardy in Britain but they do tolerate a few degrees of frost[200], so it should be possible to grow them in selected areas in the mildest parts of the country[K]. So long as the temperature falls gradually over a period of several days to allow the plant to become dormant, this species can tolerate short periods where temperatures fall to about -6¡c[260]. Plants are susceptible to lime-induced and magnesium-deficiency chlorosis[188]. A popular house plant[200], pot-grown specimens less than 30cm tall can carry a dozen or more fruits[K]. There are several named varieties, selected both for ornament and for fruit[183, 200].
A bi-generic hybrid, Citrus reticulata x Fortunella margarita?[200].

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*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.