Fingered Citron

 

Photo credit: Shi Biying

 

 

Also known as Buddha’s Hand, Fingered Citron (Citrus medica) is a small, shrubby tree that can grow up to 2.4 m tall. It has white, star-shaped flowers composed of about seven narrow, linear petals and a cluster of long, white stamens.

 

The golden fruit of the Fingered Citron (15 to 30 cm long) has finger-like projections that resemble a hand. Immature fruits are purplish to dark brown. Interestingly, the fruit is made up mostly of extremely thick and rough peels (rind), and lacks pulp or seeds. Instead, it is filled with a white, spongy tissue known as albedo.

 

Besides its unusual appearance, the fruit of Fingered Citron makes excellent zest! The very fragrant mature rind smells like violets or osmanthus and lacks the bitterness commonly found in lemon and orange peels. This citrus fruit makes a great alternative in recipes calling for lemon or orange zest. The zest can also be diced and cooked in sugar water to make candied fruit, a tasty snack!

 

This species can be propagated by seed, stem cuttings or leaf cuttings. It should be cultivated in moist, well-draining soil with full sun. When grown in a large container, It grows up to 0.3 to 0.9 m tall.


Learn more about this plant here.
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