Syn. Citrus trifoliata
Native Region: China
Zone Range: 6-9
Preferred Climate: Sunny to semi sun; well draining fertile evenly moist acidic soil.
Harvest Date: Wednesday 21 November, 2012
Seed count: 15-20
An extremely hardy member to the citrus family. In mid/late spring, fragrant citrus scented white wispy petaled flowers adorn the flat green branching. Its perfume is truly memorable. Emerging pale green trilobed leaves have a shiny waxy texture before hardening off to a strong mid green colour. In fall, the velvet covered apricot sized fruit mature from green to orange. Edible, but extremely bitter. Heavy rind is perfect for marmalade. I've yet to see pests harm this plant. Deer stay away from its flat 5cm long thorns.
Most citrus in commercial orchards are grafted onto Poncirus rootstock to increase cold hardiness (by 3C), disease resistance and bountiful harvests. This plant is growing in the outdoor garden. Hardy to -20 C with some protection. Poncirus is used as pollen parent in the creation of many hardy citrus varieties.
Seed is cold stored to maintain viablility. Soak seed 24 hours in warm water. Prepare seeding pot with a good growing well draining mix with an upper sowing layer of an equal peat/coarse sand mix. Sow 6 mm deep. Keep moist. Germinates in 7-21 days at 20 C.
I've sucessfully germinated these seeds in 10 days in moist peat in a ziplock on gentle heat (20 C). Keep an eye on them and prick them out when the seedling root is 2 cm long to transplant. Keep seedlings warm. Don't over water and don't let them dry out as they are putting all their energy into putting down a deep tap root.