Oranges are believed to have originated in southeastern Asian, formerly known as Indochina, southern China and northeastern India. The fruit was brought to the Mediterranean area by either traders or Portuguese explorers.
Until the 16th century, Europeans mainly used oranges for medicinal purposes. At this point, the orange became known as a tasty fruit and was grown by the wealthy in private orangerie conservatories. The Spanish took the orange to South America and Mexico, and it was then transported to New Orleans, possibly by the French. From New Orleans, seeds were distributed to other areas of the United States. Oranges are the most widely grown fruit trees in the world.