Orange Fruits That Grow On Trees


Orange Fruits That Grow On Trees are oranges, mandarins, clementines, tangerines, pomelos and citrons. The orange (Citrus Sinensis) berry is the most widely cultivated citrus fruit and most commonly used for juice, drinks, or eaten raw. The trees grow in temperate and tropical regions of the world, and its fruits are found in most countries.

Trees With a Small Orange-Colored Fruit

Orange fruits aren’t limited to actual oranges and grapefruits — there are plenty of other orange-colored fruits that you can add to fruit salads and desserts. The trees these fruits grow on, often small and shrub-like, are sometimes just as attractive as the fruits themselves. Some require specific conditions like warm weather and rich soil to yield the tastiest fruit.

Peanut Butter Fruit Tree

Peanut butter fruit trees are small enough to be classified as a shrub; the plant requires well-drained soil and thrives in soil fortified with organic fertilizer. The leaves are large, dark green, and curl slightly at the edges and the flowers are small and yellow. Peanut butter fruits ripen during late spring and summer and boast an intense orange or near-red color. The small fruits are about an inch long at maturity, and while they have a fruity sweetness, their texture is similar to peanut butter, make the fruit a tasty addition to milkshakes.

Kumquat Tree

Kumquat trees are evergreen, and have a slow growth rate. At maturity, the small trees are between 10 and 15 feet tall, although some are as small as 8 feet tall, similar to the size of a peanut butter tree. The grass-green leaves grow alternately on the stem, are about three inches long, and have a wide sickle shape. The small, orange fruits are round or oval shaped. There are several varieties of kumquat, including the Marumi. The Marumi kumquat tree came to Florida from Japan in the late 1700s and has a pronounced acidic taste; each fruit contains one to three seeds. The Meiwa kumquat tree, also a native of Japan, yields sweet and juicy fruit that is often seedless.

Dancy Tangerine Tree

Tangerines are often smaller than oranges, and have a noticeably sweeter flavor. The Dancy tangerine tree grows well in Florid and grows upright, with thick, full foliage. The leaves are a bright shade of green and teardrop-shaped. Dancy tangerine trees are prone to Alternaria fungus disease, which requires careful control to stop symptoms such loss of foliage and smaller crops. Dancy tangerines are about 2 1/2 inches in diameter, and have thin, leathery rinds that are a deep shade of orange. The fruits reach full maturity in December and January.

Naranjilla Tree

Naranjilla trees produce small, sweet orange fruits similar in size to tangerines. They are the main ingredient in some Peruvian fruit juices. Naranjilla trees originated in Peru and are most abundant there, but also thrive in the southern regions of Colombia and Ecuador. The leaves of the tree are about two feet long and covered with an attractive purple fuzz that has a velvety feel. The tree is fairly small and sometimes considered a shrub, as it only grows to about eight feet. Dark and medium orange naranjillas grow best in warm weather, but need partial shade to thrive. The fruits are an integral part of South American desserts, used in ice cream, pie filling, and baked desserts.

10 Common Citrus Fruit Trees

When most people think of citrus, the usual varieties first come to mind: lemons, limes, oranges, and grapefruits. However, there are many different kinds of citrus fruits in the Citrus genus. The fruits, which are modified berries called hesperidia, come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Most citrus plants grow best in full sun and in USDA plant hardiness zones 9 through 11. But some can tolerate a little shade, and some are a bit hardier than others. 

The various citrus species will readily cross with one another to form hybrids. A great many popular market fruits are derived from crossing native citrus species.

While most citrus trees are good garden plants in the warm USDA zones 9 to 11, gardeners in cooler zones can also grow them by potting them in large containers and keeping them well pruned to maintain a manageable size. The potting soil needs to be well-drained and kept uniformly moist. Keep the plants outdoors on a deck or patio during the warm season, then move them indoors to a bright location during the colder months.

Here are 10 common citrus fruit trees for the garden.

  • 01 Bitter Orange (Citrus aurantium)Fresh orange tree on the organic farm. Sirintra Pumsopa/Getty ImagesBitter orange may also be known as sour orange or Seville orange. Most people find the fruit too sour-tasting to eat fresh, but this is an excellent fruit for making orange marmalade. Like most oranges, bitter orange does best in a Mediterranean-type climate—warm days and coolish nights.
    • Native Area: Asia ​​
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11
    • Height: 8 to 30 feet, depending on the variety
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 02 Blood Orange (Citrus x sinensis var.)Blood orange  bhofack2 / Getty ImagesThe blood orange is a variety of the standard sweet orange (Citrus sinensis) known for its deep red flesh. The most common varieties are the ‘Moro’, the ‘Sanguinello’, and the ‘Tarocco’. The red coloring is due to the high anthocyanin content, a substance common in many flowers but rare in citrus fruit.1 Blood orange trees are often grown in large containers and kept pruned to maintain a diminutive size. The trees are indistinguishable from sweet oranges—they have the same glossy green leaves, twisted branches, and spines.
    • Native Area: Spain, Italy
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11; may need winter protection in zone 9
    • Height: Up to 25 feet
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 03 Calamondin ( Citrus microcarpa × Citrofortunella microcarpa)calamondin plant
    Valeriya / Getty ImagesCalamondin was developed as a cross between a sour Mandarin and a kumquat. In the U.S., this tree is used most often for ornamental purposes rather than for edible fruit. These are small bushy evergreens usually kept fairly short. The branches have small spines, and the orange-scented flowers become small fruits, about 1 inch in diameter, similar to a tiny tangerine. The fruit is segmented and is very acidic.This citrus is not tolerant of freezing or windy conditions. It is drought-tolerant once established but needs plentiful water during the fruiting period. Other common names for this plant include calamondin orange, calamonsi, and Philippine lime.
    • Native Area: NA; this is a hybrid plant
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11
    • Height: 6 to 15 feet
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 04 Citron (Citrus medica)Citron  Paolo_Toffanin / Getty ImagesCitron is one of the oldest kinds of citrus fruits and was used as parent species in the genetic breeding of many other important citrus fruits. It is often candied and used in desserts, as the citron is mostly rind and offers little or no juice. The citron is a slow-growing tree with leathery leaves and spines. White or purplish flowers give way to knobby, irregular fruit.
    • Native Area: Probably India (origins uncertain)
    • USDA Growing Zones: 10 to 11
    • Height: 10 to 15 feet
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 05 Grapefruit (Citrus x paradisi)Grapefruit  huseyintuncer / Getty ImagesThe grapefruit is an accidental hybrid plant that first appeared in Barbados as a cross between sweet orange (Citrus sinensis) and pomelo (C. maxima). It has since become a very important food crop and is sometimes grown in home landscapes. Different varieties produce fruit with pulp in various shades of white, pink, or red.Grapefruit trees have long, glossy dark-green leaves. White flowers precede the development of fruit with yellow-orange skin. Grapefruit trees can tolerate brief dips below freezing, but they require good moisture and frequent feeding.
    • Native Area: Caribbean
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11
    • Height: 10 to 45 feet tall
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 06 Persian Lime (Citrus x latifolia)Lime tree  TaniaBertoni / Getty ImagesThe Persian lime (Citrus x latifolia), also known as the Tahiti lime, is a hybrid plant of unknown parentage. It is usually seedless and is widely used for lime juices. This is the kind of lime you will usually see in the grocery store or used for a garnish on cocktail drinks.The Persian lime has denser foliage than most citrus trees, with rounded glossy green leaves that form a dense lower canopy. Clusters of white blooms in February and March precede fruits that are ready to eat by June through August. This plant is often grown in large containers, kept pruned to about 6 feet or less. Unlike many other citrus plants, this one has no thorns.
    • Native Area: NA; this is hybrid plant
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11
    • Height: 15 to 20 feet
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 07 Key Lime (Citrus aurantifolia)Key limes, Citrus aurantiifolia, in a wooden bowl Westend61/ Getty ImagesKey lime is a famous species of lime (Citrus aurantifolia) that is also known as Mexican lime or West Indian lime. The fruit is sweeter than the Persian lime and is well-known as the base ingredient in a key lime pie. Key lime trees need rich, well-draining soil that is kept consistently moist. The leaves are glossy deep green, oval in shape. The fragrant flowers precede small green fruit, about the size of a golf ball. The fruits are usually picked while they are green, but they will ripen to a yellow color.
    • Native Area: Indonesia and Malaysia
    • USDA Growing Zones: 10 to 11
    • Height: 10 to 12 feet
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 08 Kumquat (Citrus japoncia)Kumquat fruit By Eve Livesey/Getty ImagesTechnically speaking, the kumquat (Citrus japonica) is not a citrus fruit, but it is very closely related. It was separated out into its genus around 1915 and formerly classified in the genus Fortunella. The name kumquat means “golden tangerine” in Cantonese. The kumquat has served as a parent species for several hybrid crosses, including the orangequat, calamondin, and limequat.Kumquat trees have narrow, medium-green leaves and vase-like growing habit with a rounded top. Fragrant white flowers in spring lead to slightly oval yellow-orange fruit. This is a citrus variety that has better cold-tolerance than most; it can survive temperatures down to about 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
    • Native Area: Southern Asia and Asia Pacific
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11; survives in zone 8 with protection
    • Height: 4 to 14 feet, depending on the variety
    • Sun Exposure: Full sunContinue to 9 of 16 below.
  • 09 Lemon (Citrus lemon)Lemons  5second / Getty ImagesOne of the most popular of all citrus fruits, the lemon tree is a durable, long-lived tree that is very sensitive to cold. For this reason, it is often grown as a potted plant that is moved indoors in cold weather. Lemons are broadleaf evergreens with rather sparse foliage. The leaves are oval in shape, dark green on the top surfaces and lighter green on the bottoms. The fragrant flowers are white and reddish pink, leading to the familiar fruits, which may be green as well as yellow.These plants can tolerate drought provided they do receive enough water during the fruiting period.
    • Native Area: Asia (exact origins are uncertain)
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11
    • Height: 10 to 30 feet, depending on the variety
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun
  • 10 Orange (Citrus sinensis)Orange tree  ozgurdonmaz / Getty ImagesThe orange, or Citrus sinensis, is the common name for the sweet orange that is the standard supermarket fruit. Two of the most well-known varieties of the orange are Valencia and Washington Navel.The leaves of an orange tree are elongated and glossy green, and branches are often twisted with spiny protuberances. The white flowers are fragrant, and the fruits require 12 months or more to ripen. Orange trees are very sensitive to cold; temperatures below 35 degrees Fahrenheit may seriously harm the fruit.
    • Native Area: Asia
    • USDA Growing Zones: 9 to 11; protection may be required in zone 9
    • Height: Up to 25 feet
    • Sun Exposure: Full sun; may tolerate part shade

How to Sprout and Grow Orange Trees: 5 Gardening Tips

When it comes to planting your own orange tree or other citrus trees, the major things to keep in mind are how to plant, where to plant, and how to care for your budding fruits.

What Are Oranges?

The sweet orange (citrus x sinensis) is a tender perennial fruit in the Citrus family that grows on trees both full size and smaller, dwarf trees. Oranges are a summer fruit that grow in warm weather, and are very sensitive to cold and frost.

Common orange varieties include:

  • 1. Valencia oranges: originally from Orange County, California, and commonly used for fresh-squeezed orange juice
  • 2. Trovita: a sturdy orange that fares well in colder climates
  • 3. Ruby (or Blood): smaller with fewer seeds, with jewel-toned flesh and a tart, tangy taste
  • 4. Washington Navel oranges: a large, seedless orange that is easy to peel, and thrives when planted in Southern California

There are also sour oranges, which include Willowleaf oranges and Seville oranges, which are ideal as a base for marmalade.

When to Plant Oranges

Oranges are a tender crop, and should be planted at least six weeks after the last frost date, when the air and soil temperatures are consistently warm.

Those who live in the commercial citrus belt, extending from Southern California to Florida, can plant orange trees at any time, due to the perennial warmth. Before planting, consult your plant hardiness map to determine if your area is suitable for year-round citrus plant growth.

How to Grow Orange Trees Outdoors

Locate a spot with plentiful sunlight and well-draining soil rich in loam. Since orange trees lay deep roots, measure a clearing of at least a 20-foot circumference from the base of full-sized trees, and 10-foot circumference from smaller varieties.

Mound the soil around the base of the fledgling tree, then make sure to water the roots with about an inch of water per week.

How to Grow Orange Trees From Seeds

You can extract seeded orange seeds straight from the fruit.

  1. 1. Soak the seeds in water. The seeds will need to sit in water for at least 24 hours. After a day or two, discard any seeds that float to the top.
  2. 2. Prepare your soil. To germinate orange tree seeds, you can use traditional potting mix. Place your soil in trays and plant the seeds in a hole about an inch deep. Cover with soil, and add any compost or mulch to add nutrients to the soil.
  3. 3. Keep in a warm place. Once the seeds have been planted, place your seeds in a warm, moist spot with access to indirect sunlight. Keep the soil moist by placing moist paper towels or plastic bags over the trays for a few weeks. Once the seeds begin to sprout, you can remove the covers. Keep in a warm spot with lots of sunlight. Supplement with a grow light if natural light is scarce.
  4. 4. Transfer to individual pots. Seeds should continue sprouting and growing. Keep the seedlings moist and warm until they are ready to transplant into individual containers. When transplanting, keep the rootball undisturbed. Plant in a pot big enough to accommodate the deep roots the tree lays in well-draining soil. Place in a warm spot indoors with access to direct sunlight and good air circulation. Ensure your planters have drainage holes.

How to Transplant Orange Trees

You can begin growing your orange trees in pots and eventually move them directly into the earth. Dwarf orange trees, like Valencia oranges, can stay indoors in smaller containers or planters. Indoor germination helps control the growth of the plants before transplanting them outdoors.

  1. 1. Carefully uproot the young tree from its pot, leaving the root ball undisturbed.
  2. 2. Dig a deep hole slightly larger than the size of the rootball and its root in well-drained soil.
  3. 3. Place the tree in the hole and secure with soil.
  4. 4. Water on a weekly basis.

How Long Does It Take for Oranges to Grow?

It can take three to five years for an orange tree to produce fruit, depending on how old the tree is when purchasing. Once the tree finally begins producing fruit, they take 7 to 8 months to ripen.

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