Citrus limetta

Citrus limetta

Citrus limetta is a species of citrus. Common names for varieties of this species include sweet limetta, Mediterranean sweet lemon, sweet lemon, and sweet lime. In India, it is commonly called mousambi, mosambi, or musambi.

Appearance

It is a small tree which may reach 8 m in height. The sweet lemon has irregular branches, and relatively smooth, brownish-grey bark. It possesses numerous thorns which may grow to anywhere from 1.5 to 7.5 cm long. The petioles of the sweet lemon are narrowly but distinctly winged, and are 8 to 29 mm long. It has leaflets rather than leaves, which are obovate and 5.5 to 17 cm long, 2.8 to 8 cm wide. The apex of the leaflet is acuminate, and the base of the leaflet is rounded. Flowers are white in bud and in bloom, ranging from 2 to 3 cm wide. The petals soon fall away, leaving the fruit to grow. The skin of the fruit is light yellow at maturity; the rind is white and about 5 mm thick. The pulp is greenish and the juice is sweet rather than acidic.

Range

It is native to Eurasia and North Africa and is cultivated in the Mediterranean region. It has been introduced to other regions of the world by humans. It is propagated by seed.

Uses

The fruit of the sweet lemon is edible, and contains essential oils. The tree is used for ornamental purposes or for graft stock.

References

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