Foto info
Photo: Dinesh Valke
Common name: Citron • Hindi: बड़ा निम्बू Bara nimbu, बिजौरा Bijaura, Kutla • Manipuri: হৈজাঙ Heijang • Marathi: महाळुंगी Mahalungi • Tamil: Marucahagam, Komattimadali • Malayalam: Matalanarakam • Telugu: Lungamu • Kannada: Rusakam • Bengali: Bara nimbu, Begpura • Konkani: Mauling • Assamese: Jora tenga • Gujarati: તુરંજ Turanj • Sanskrit: महाफल Mahaphala, Matulunga
Botanical name: Citrus medica    Family: Rutaceae (Citrus family)

Citron is a large lemon-like fruit borne by a slow-growing shrub or small tree reaching 8-15 ft high with stiff branches and stiff twigs and short or long spines in the leaf axils. Citron is probably native to North-East India. The leaflets are evergreen, lemon-scented, ovate-lanceolate or ovate elliptic, 2.5-7 in long, leathery, with short, wingless or nearly wingless petioles. The flower buds are large and white or sometimes purplish. The fragrant flowers about 4 cm wide, in short clusters, have 4 to 5 petals, sometimes pinkish or purplish on the outside, with 30 to 60 stamens. The fruit is fragrant, mostly oblong, obovoid or oval, occasionally pyriform, but highly variable; various shapes and smooth or rough fruits sometimes occurring on the same branch. The citron is unlike the more common citrus fruit like the lemon or orange. While the most popular citrus species are peeled in order to consume its pulpy and juicy segments – the citron's pulp is very dry containing only little insipid juice.

Identification credit: Eby Abraham
Photographed in Maharashtra.
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