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Meyer lemon
Meyer lemon
© Jorma Koskinen
Moro blood orange
Moro blood orange
© Jorma Koskinen
About Citrus Pages
Citrus fruits
A little bit of history
World citrus production
Description of the fruit
Google Language Tool
Citrus Pages photo copyright
Sources of information
Web optimisation

About Citrus Pages
Vangasay lemon
Vangasay lemon
© Gene Lester

Indio Mandarinquat
Indio Mandarinquat
© Joe Real

Yuzu lemon
Yuzu lemon
© Laaz

Shasta Gold mandarin
Shasta Gold mandarin
© Jorma Koskinen
I started Citrus Pages in 2006. I was looking for information on the Internet about the most common citrus types with representative pictures of each variety. I found a lot of information on many sites but I missed a comprehensive approach arranged by groups and species combined with decent photographs. I could not find one. I thought long about creating my own site but the crucial thing was how to obtain good pictures. I wanted my site to differ from so many other citrus sites by having at least one photo of each variety, more if possible.

Before starting I wrote to some of the biggest citrus research centres and universities around the world, presented my plan and asked if they would agree to provide pictures for my non-commercial site. I promised I would credit the organisation or person holding the copyright under each picture. To my surprise many agreed. All of them are listed on the Photos & links page.

My first plan was to include the most common edible citrus fruits only, around 200 varieties. The plan was completed early 2007 and I was happy with it.  I soon received e-mail where people were enthusiastic about the site but asked questions like: "Why no kumquats?", "Where are the Australian citrus?" I gave a deep sigh and was again confronted with the same problem. I have enough information but no photos. Another round of e-mail went out and again I received many replies. By early 2008 this site found its present form, then with around 350 citrus varieties and included further groups like Papedas and Trifoliate orange with other rootstock.

Thanks to research centres like INRA Corsica, University of California Riverside, Texas A&M University and many citrus growers and enthusiasts like Gene Lester, Joe Real and Laaz in the United States and Mike Saalfeld and Petr Broža in Europe I have many new high definition photographs. Citrus Pages has several citrus varieties of which there previously was no information or photo available on the Internet.

After a four-week visit in January 2010 to central California where I was a house guest of Gene Lester I now have a collection of 6000 citrus photographs of which over 3000 are new pictures of my own. Gene took me to the UC Lindcove Citrus Research Station with its collection of several hundred citrus types and to many smaller growers and private gardens. It took me a week in Gene's own orchard alone to take pictures of his 400+ citrus trees of nearly 200 different citrus types, which form the largest private collection of citrus varieties. I shall now be able to slowly go through the over 1500 pictures on Citrus Pages and replace the oldest small pictures with bigger and technically better newer ones.

Citrus fruits
Combined together the citrus family is the largest group of commercially grown fruit. Bananas come second, with grapes in third place. Citrus Pages now also include Kumquats, Papedas, and Native Australian citrus as well as Trifoliate orange and other rootstock. More distant citrus relatives also have  a page. There are 310 varieties with a short description and a photograph. About 90 closely related cultivars are mentioned in addition. Of the 310 citrus types 131 have been assigned a botanical name at one time or another. The botanical index lists approximately 270 alternative Latin names for them, each with its respective author.

A little bit of history
The true story of the arrival of citrus to the West.
'Seedless Lemon' CCPP  California

'Redblush' grapefruit

Persian limes

'Sanguinelli' blood orange

Bearss lime

Citrons were grown in Mesopotamia as early as 4000 B.C. Most citrus types originated in the large areas of temperate climate around the Himalayas or in south-east Asia. The first written mention of citrus fruit is found in Sanskrit literature around 800 B.C. The cultivation of citrus fruit presumably began in China around 500 B.C. The first citrus brought to Europe was the citron, which came with the army of Alexander the Great in 325 B.C. from Persia. The citron was first used as a perfume and an insecticide and was later found to be edible when properly prepared. The Romans imported oranges and lemons from their provinces as expensive luxuries for their banquets. The plants they grew in Rome survived but bore few fruit. There are recognisable images of citrus fruit on the murals in Pompeii, which was destroyed by a volcano in 79 A.D.

After the Romans citriculture in Europe fell into oblivion for centuries. It is a common mistake repeated in a lot of citrus literature that the first citrus fruit were brought to Europe by the crusaders returning from Jerusalem in the 11th and 12th centuries. It was the Arab conquerors who brought many cultural novelties, citrus among them, to southern Europe with their Holy War as early as the late 8th century. After they conquered southern Spain around 711 A.D. the Khalifs of Cordoba started building the then biggest mosque in the world, the Mezquita of Cordoba in what they called Al-Andaluz. The building was completed in 987 when the famous Patio de los naranjos, the courtyard of oranges also took its final form. The Caliphs of Cordoba were very fond of sour orange trees and ordered them to be planted in the most prominent public spaces of the most important towns. This was the type that later became the Standard sour orange or Seville orange. Lemon and lime soon followed and after the conquest of Sicily we know that all three fruits were grown on the island in the year 1002 A.D. The crusaders did bring citrus fruit to the northern side of the Mediterranean. They re-introduced the citron and also brought the lemon and a type of sour orange that we now know as the bittersweet orange. This is the type that first reached America and the royal courts of Europe. The great voyages of discovery not only enlarged our view of the world but also introduced us to a type of sweet(er) orange in the early 1500's. But it was not until 1635 that the Portuguese planted a new type of citrus fruit they had found in China. It was the first citrus type that could be eaten fresh, the kind that we today know as the sweet orange, which for more than two centuries was called the Portugal orange.

On his second voyage Columbus introduced the first citrus fruits, the bittersweet orange and lemon among them, to America on November 22, 1493 on the Island of Hispaniola. First citrus plants were planted in the continental America on the coast of present-day Mexico on July 12, 1518. Citrus fruit spread to Florida in 1565, South Carolina in 1577, Arizona in 1707 and to California in 1769. It was in Florida and later in Paraguay where the bittersweet orange soon escaped from orchards and became naturalized still growing wild in many areas.

The last of the common citrus fruits to arrive in Europe and the U.S. was the mandarin as late as the beginning of the 19th century. Since then it has become one of the most popular citrus fruits and a source of continuous development and breeding. The research centre of the French Institute for Agricultural Research on the island of Corsica in the Mediterranean has more than 240 different kinds of mandarin trees.

2009 World citrus production
'Redblush' grapefruit

Volkamer lemon

Variegated Pink-fleshed Eureka lemon

Washington Sanguine light blood orange

Calamondin, Citrus × microcarpa

Star Ruby grapefruit

Winged lime
The total world citrus production for the 2010/11 season is forecast at 58,3 million metric tons, 40% of which is grown in China and consumed locally. The most recent statistical data by country is available from the year 2009. The three biggest producers remain the same but India has now reached the fourth position ahead of Mexico and Spain.

World citrus total production in 2009, mostly consumed domestically.
 Country metric tons Country metric tons 
China 23 088 471 Greece 1 009 956
Brazil 19 752 262 Algeria 844 952
United States of America 10 740 150 Peru 809 714
India 8 128 393 Viet Nam 623 576
Mexico 7 124 577 Republic of Korea 621 382
Spain 5 240 100 Israel 592 118
Iran 4 138 700 Ghana 575 479
Nigeria 3 769 420 Venezuela 511 206
Italy 3 745 000 Australia 487 351
Turkey 3 513 771 Cuba 420 383
Egypt 3 295 495 Tunisia 419 416
Argentina 2 200 000 Lebanon 392 000
South Africa 2 186 042 Costa Rica 390 951
Pakistan 2 132 000 Paraguay 326 489
Indonesia 2 102 560 Guatemala 315 983
Morocco 1 763 037 Chile 297 000
Thailand 1 308 827 Honduras 292 295
Japan 1 191 250 Portugal 280 341
Colombia 1 167 531 Uruguay 268 621
Syrian Arab Republic 1 092 598 Belize 266 127
Source: FAOSTAT, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations

In 2008 the biggest citrus exporters were
1. Spain, 2. South Africa, 3. United States (oranges, grapefruit, grapefruit juice, lemons and limes),
4. Turkey,  5. Argentina, 6. China, 7. Mexico and 8. Morocco.

The biggest citrus importers by far are the 27 EU countries whose main EU external imports come from South Africa, Argentina, Morocco and Turkey. After the EU the biggest importers are 2. Russia (mainly from Egypt, Turkey, South Africa, Spain) 3. United States (orange juice, lemons, limes and mandarins), 4. Canada, 5. Japan, 6. Ukraine, 7. Hong Kong, 8. Malaysia, 9. Switzerland and 10. Indonesia.

(Source: USDA Foreign Agricultural Service: Citrus World Markets and Trade, 4/2008.)

The biggest production areas of orange juice are Sao Paulo, Brazil and Florida, US. The biggest orange juice consumers are U.S., EU, Canada, Russia and Japan. A new feature that has emerged in the last few decades is the year-round availability of citrus fruit in the biggest consumer areas of North America and Europe. Because of the development of new late maturing cultivars the first ripe fruit of the new season are available in South Africa, Argentina, Australia and Brazil before the previous crops are finished in the northern hemisphere. After six months the situation is reversed.

It is important to remember that unlike most other commercially grown fruit the majority of the citrus fruits (oranges, mandarins, lemons, citrons and most grapefruit) mature during the local winter. In Europe the high season is from November to March. Including the early and late varieties the whole season lasts from October to May. Citrus fruit of the tropical climate (limes, pomelos and some grapefruit types) are an exception to this. Some pomelos can bear four crops in a year and some limes are picked once a month throughout the year.

Description of the fruit
The actual division into fifteen groups in this presentation is, however, that of the present author and takes note of recent research using molecular analysis. Sometimes the division into groups is determined solely by the food use of each fruit. Thus the fruits in the lime group are not all closely related but form a collection of several different kinds of citrus fruit that are used in the kitchen in much the same way as limes. The same is true of lemons. The only completely homogeneous groups are pomelos, grapefruit and sweet oranges, all of which contain cultivated varieties of only one species or hybrid.

Example: Calamondin, Citrus × microcarpa Bunge (example 1).

The botanical name of each type is given first. The complete scientific name of a plant includes the name of the author, the person who first described the fruit and named it. Sometimes two authors are given: first the name in brackets of the person who originally used the Latin name followed by the name of the person who later amended the description and reassigned the name to the plant type in question. An author name is often given as an abbreviation. Only Carl von Linné has an initial (L.) Where needed or available, several synonyms of the botanical name are given (example 2).  For a detailed discussion of botanical names see Which botanical name is the correct one? on the Citrus classification page.

This is followed by a brief description of the fruit and its most common food uses (example 3). Common names follow, first in English, sometimes with local variations. These are followed by the most common names in a handful of selected languages, when available. The author is fully aware of the enormous range of geographical variants. The Photos & links page has links to several sites presenting large indices of names of citrus types and cultivated varieties in multiple languages.  At the bottom of the pictures the copyright owner of each photograph is credited (example 4).
Fruit description
example 1

Fruit description
example 2

Fruit description
example 3

Fruit description
example 4

Google Language Tool
Google Translate Tool

As a new feature from November 2009 a language selection tool is placed at the top of each page. This service is provided by Google Translation and includes about 50 most common languages of Citrus Pages visitors. The translations are done by a computer and are not always accurate but hopefully they make visiting Citrus Pages easier for non-native English speakers.

The following abbreviations are used in plant names:
sp. = species
. = subspecies
syn. = synonyms, other versions of the Latin or variety name
var. = botanical variant
× = hybrid

The × may refer to a single plant: Citrus limon × Citrus medica means that the fruit is a hybrid of lemon and citron. An × may also refer to a whole species: Citrus × paradisi is the Latin name used of the grapefruit meaning that it is a man-made hybrid (of pomelo and orange)  and cannot as such be found in nature.

The abbreviations of the selected languages are :

DAN Danish IND some common Indian languages
ENG English ITA Italian
FIN Finnish LAT Latin
FRA French SPA Spanish
GER German SWE Swedish
'Oroblanco' grapefruit © C. Jacquemond / INRA
Clementine © C. Jacquemond / INRA
'Lemonime' © C. Jacquemond / INRA
Persian lime, Citrus latifolia © C. Jacquemond / INRA

Citrus Pages photo copyright
'Eureka' lemon
Eureka lemon
© Jorma Koskinen
Citrus Pages has at present about 1500 citrus-related photos provided by over 35 institutions and individuals, many of whom have taken photos for this site exclusively. Photos may be downloaded for private use only. They may not be printed or published on other websites without prior consent of the copyright owner. I am contractually unable to give permission to use photos owned or taken by third parties and requests should be addressed to the copyright owner directly. 

We can only authorize the use of our own photos and will do so for certain non-commercial purposes. In this case a link or reference to Citrus Pages is required and a credit to
© Jorma Koskinen or © Sylvain Jousse
must be shown. Please for photo requests

More information on the sources of the photographs is given
on the  Photos & links page.
'Daisy' mandarin
Daisy mandarin
© Jorma Koskinen

Literature and references 
Much information on citrus fruits is available both in printed form as well as on the Internet. I have made an effort to ensure that
the botanical information and classifications are as correct and up-to-date as possible.

The botanical information used on Citrus Pages is based on the following literature and it has been amended
and up-dated by the information from the recent scientific studies listed at the bottom:


Editors: W. Reuther, H.J. Webber, L.D. Batchelor. University of California Press © 1967.
The magnum opus of citrus information unsurpassed in the wideness of its scope and the thoroughness with which it handles its subject matter. Now available also on the Internet.

Walter T. Swingle and Philip C. Reece: The Botany of Citrus and Its Wild Relatives. Chapter 3 of The Citrus Industry Vol 1 pp 190 - 430. Originally published in 1943 this is one of the best known taxonomic descriptions of citrus fruit. Now also available in its entirety on the Internet.

Robert Willard Hodgson: Horticultural Varieties of Citrus.Chapter 4 of The Citrus Industry.
An extensive description of both common and rare cultivated varieties of citrus.

Fresh Citrus Fruits. Edited by: W.F.Wardowski, S. Nagy, W.Grierson, Macmillan UK © 1986.

Julia F. Morton: Fruits of Warm Climates, Creative Resource Syst., Inc. Miami, FL. © 1987
A thorough presentation of commercially important citrus types and their history, cultivation and food uses. Available on the Internet.

R. Cottin: Citrus of the World, A citrus directory, SRA - INRA - CIRAD © 2002.
A catalogue of more than 5500 citrus names, classified by botanical, common and cultivar names. Includes a useful comparison of Swingle and Tanaka terminology listing equivalent names of both.

D.J. Mabberley: The Plant-Book, Second edition, Oxford University Press © 1997.
D.J. Mabberley: The Plant-Book, Third edition, Cambridge University Press UK © 2008.

James Saunt: Citrus Varieties of the World, Second edition, Sinclair UK © 2000, 160 pp.

Tom McClendon: Hardy Citrus for the South East, Second edition, Southeastern Palm Society © 2006, 33 pp.

Michel Courbouleuz: Les agrumes, Rustica éditions, Paris © 2005, 119 pp.

Martin Page: Growing citrus, the essential gardener's guide,Timber Press, London © 2008, 192 pp.

Bernhard Voss: Zitruspflanzen, Kosmos, Stuttgart © 2009, 77 pp.

Bénédict et Michel Bachès: Agrumes, Ulmer, Paris, nouvelle édition augmentée © 2011, 128 pp.

University of California, Riverside Citrus Variety Collection, Citrus varieties
A presentation of the most important common varieties at the UCR Experiment Station.

University of California, Riverside CCPP Citrus Clonal Protection Program, Variety data.
A presentation of the holdings of the CCPP citrus variety collection with the relevant data.

Répartition des variétés par espèces. Station de recherche agronomique SRA-INRA Corse.
Détails des variétés par espèces. Station de recherche agronomique SRA-INRA Corse.
These two large databases detail the holdings of the INRA Citrus Research Station in Corsica, France.

A classification for edible Citrus
D.J. Mabberley, Rijksherbarium, University of Leiden, Netherlands and
Royal BotanicGardens, Mrs Macquaries Road, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia (1997) Telopea 7(2): 167-172.

RFLP analysis of the origin of Citrus bergamia, Citrus jambhiri, and Citrus limonia.
Federici, C.T., Roose, M.L. and Scora, R.W. 2000. Acta Hort. (ISHS) 535:55-64.

Citrus phylogeny and genetic origin of important species as investigated by E. Nicolosi, Z. N. Deng, A. Gentile, S. La Malfa, G. Continella and E. Tribulato, (1999).
Instituto di Coltivazioni arboree, University of Catania, Italy. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 100(8): 1155-1166.

Australian Citreae with notes on other Aurantioideae (Rutaceae)
D.J.Mabberley, Rijksherbarium, University of Leiden, Netherlands and Royal Botanic Gardens,
Mrs Macquaries Road, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia (1998) Telopea 7(4):333-344.

CITRUS Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 2: 782. 1753.
Zhang Dianxiang, David J. Mabberley, Fl. China 11:90-96. 2008.

Chemical constituents of essential oils from the rutaceae family
M. A. Nor Azah, J. Abdul Majid, S. Abu Said , M. Z. Zaridah Z. Mohd. Faridz
Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM).

Molecular characterization and genetic diversity among Japanese acid citrus based on RAPD markers
A. Asadi Abkenar and S. Isshiki 2002. Laboratory of Biotechnology and Plant Breeding, Saga University, Japan.
Journal of Horticultural Science Biotechnology (2003) 78(1) 108-112.

Native Australian Citrus - wild species, cultivars and hybrids
Primary Industries and Resources, Government of South Australia (PIRSA) FS No: 7/03.

The International Plant Names Index(IPNI) database of authors.

Assessment of polyembryony in lemon: rescue and in vitro culture of immature embryos
O. Pérez-Tornero and I. Porras.
Instituto Murciano de Investigación y Desarrollo Agrario y Alimentario, C/ Mayor s/n, 30150 Murcia, Spain.
Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture 2008, 93: 173-180.

Polyembryony in Citrus
Accumulation of Seed Storage Proteins in Seeds and in Embryos Cultured in Vitro
Anna M. Koltunow, Tetsushi Hidaka and Simon P. Robinson
Plant Physiol. (1 996) 11 O: 599-609.

Marker enrichment and construction of haplotype-specific BAC contigs for the polyembryony genomic region in Citrus
Michiharu Nakano, Tokurou Shimizu, Hiroshi Fujii, Takehiko Shimada, Tomoko Endo, Hirohisa Nesumi, Takeshi Kuniga and Mitsuo Omura.
Breeding Science Vol. 58 (2008) , No. 4 375-383.

Polyembryony and identification of Volkamerian lemon zygotic and nucellar seedlings using RAPD
María Andrade-Rodríguez, Angel Villegas-Monter, Guillermo Carrillo-Castañeda, and Armando García-Velázquez.
Pesq. agropec. bras., Brasília, v.39, n.6, p.551-559, jun. 2004.

Volkamer lemon

'Yen Ben' Lisbon lemon

Star Ruby grapefruit

'Shambar' grapefruit

Marrakech limonetta

Ruby light blood orange

Yuzu, Citrus junos

Star Ruby grapefruit

'Perrine' lemonine

Ginger lime

Washington Sanguine light blood orange

'Eureka' lemon

Web optimisation
Citrus Pages are optimised for a minimum screen resolution width of 1280 pixels on Google Chrome and Firefox.
On narrower screen settings photos may not coincide with the text.

Comments and suggestions are welcome.

Page up-dated on 20 December 2011

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