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Citrus × limon


Citrus × limon (L.) Osbeck

Family Name: Rutaceae
Common Name: Lemon, 柠檬


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Infraspecific Epithet
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Tree
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Maximum Height 3 m


Native Habitat Terrestrial
Preferred Climate Zone Mediterranean
Local Conservation Status Non-native (Horticultural / Cultivated Only)

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form Tree with an irregular growth habit.
Foliage Young foliage is initially purple, gradually turning green. Leaves are ovate to lanceolate with toothed leaf margins.
Flowers Purplish white flowers are produced in clusters or solitary, mildly fragrant.
Fruits Yellow, acidic fruits may be round to oval-shaped with an apical mammilla (nipple-shaped structure on the end attached to the branch).
Cultivation Lemon trees are adapted to and grow best in Mediterranean climates. In humid, tropical climates, they become prone to fungal and algal diseases, produce lower quality fruit with coarse peels, and tend to adopt an unwieldy growth habit.
Ethnobotanical Uses Edible Plant Parts (Edible Fruits, Edible Leaves)
Food (Fruit & Vegetable : Lemon juice is widely used in many drinks, ice creams and other desserts. The outmost layer of the rind, zest, is used to flavor pies, cakes and other sweets. Its leaves are used in cooking as well. ;Herb and Spice)

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Fruits
Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Well-Drained Soils
Landscape Uses Parks & Gardens, Container Planting
Thematic Landscaping Economic Garden
Usage Hazard - Cons Spines/Thorns - Stem/Branch

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Fast to Moderate
Propagation Method Seed


Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Prominent Young Flush Colour(s) Purple
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality 1 Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) White
Flowering Period Free-Flowering, A Few Times Yearly
Flowering Habit Polycarpic
Flower Colour(s) Remarks Purplish White
Flowering Period Remarks Trees tend to be free-flowering in cool, coastal climates, but tend to flower twice a year in Mediterranean climates.

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) - Angiosperms and Gymnosperms Yellow / Golden



Davies, F.S. & L.G. Albrigo. 1994. Citrus. UK: CAB International. 254 pp.

Lindsay, S. et al. (2022). Flora of Singapore: Checklist and bibliography. Gardens’ Bulletin Singapore 74(Suppl. 1): 3–860.

Image Repository



Master ID 29362
Species ID 3671
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 23 March 2023.