10 years to reach maturity
The citron tree blooms nearly all year, but mostly in spring and the spring blooms produce the major part of the crop. The fruit is dark green when young, takes 3 months to turn yellow. To retain the green color, firmness and uniformity desired by the dealers in candied citron, the fruit must be picked when only 12.5 - 15cm long and 7.5 - 10cm wide.
More images of Citron
Citrus medica is a large, evergreen shrub species from the Rutaceae family. This ancient Citrus is distinguished by its fragrant fruit, leaves and flowers. This tender plant is spiny and produces dark green, oval-shaped leaves. Flowers are scented, white and measure around 3.5cm in diameter, sometimes flushed with pink colouring. Leading onto large, yellow fruits up to 30cm long. Few are familiar with these fruits, as they are seldom seen or used in the natural unprocessed form. With its trailing branches, its lemon-scented green leaves, its clustered flowers and its large, yellow egg-shaped fruits the Citron plant has been an important attribution to the culinary and medicinal applications. It is considered an ornamental plant and it can be trained as a Bonsai.
Common problems with Citron
The citrus bud mite (Eriophyes sheldoni), citrus rust mite (Phyllocoptruta oleivora), snow scale (Unaspis citri) and branch knot are problematic. As with any fruit bearing tree, spider mites, scales, caterpillars and other insects are common.
How to propagate Citron
Cuttings taken from branches 2 to 4 years old and quickly buried deeply in soil without defoliation.
Special features of Citron
Suitable to grow in containers, note that container must have enough drainage holes.
Attracts useful insects
Attracts insects such as honeybees.
Can be grown inside in a container given enough sun.
Other uses of Citron
Culinary. Medicinal. Perfume
From ancient through medieval times it was used to combat seasickness, pulmonary troubles, intestinal ailments, scurvy, etc. Used today as an anthelmintic, appetizer, tonic, in cough, rheumatism, etc.
The practically inedible fruits are used to make candied citrus peel, jams, marmalade and even liqueur.