History: Common names for the this fruit include Rangpur in India, Canton lemon in South China, Hime lemon in Japan, Cravo lemon in Brazil, and mandarin-lime in the United States. The name lime in connection with this fruit is often misleading because there are very little similarities between the Rangpur and true limes. However, Rangpurs are highly acid and can be used as a substitute for commercial limes. The Rangpur is almost certainly of Indian origin. It was introduced into Florida in the late nineteeth century by Reasoner Brothers of Oneco, who obtained seed from northwestern India. In the United States the Rangpur is used as an ornamental or potted plant, but outside the United States it is used principally as a rootstock.
Description from The Citrus Industry, Volume 1: Fruit small to medium in size, variable in form but mainly depressed globose to round or broadly obovate; sometimes with furrowed collar or low neck; often with short nipple partially or entirely surrounded by a shallow furrow. Rind color yellowish to reddish-orange; thin, and moderately loose, with surface minutely pitted and smooth to slightly rough. Segments 8 to 10, loosely adherent; axis large and hollow at maturity. Flesh orange-colored; tender, juicy, and strongly acid. Seeds fairly numerous, small, highly polyembryonic, and with light green cotyledons. Fruit holds on tree for a long period.
Tree usually vigorous and productive, medium-sized, spreading and drooping, with slender twigs, comparatively few and small thorns; foliage dull-green and mandarin-like, and new shoot growth lightly purple-tinted. Flowers small and mandarin-like and buds and petals deeply purple-tinged. Hardy to cold.
The description of the Rangpur given above is generalized. Several clonal varieties of this mandarin-like fruit have been selected and named and a comparatively wide variation exists in fruit characters in regard to form, color, smoothness and adherence of rind, and acidity and flavor.
Common names used for the fruit include Rangpur in India, Canton lemon in South China, hime lemon in Japan, cravo lemon in Brazil, Japanche citroen in Java, and Rangpur lime or mandarin-lime in the United States. Other Indian names include Sylhet lime, surkh nimboo, sharbati and marmalade lime. The name lime employed in connection with this fruit is misleading and should be avoided since the only similarities between it and the true limes are that both have small flowers and because they are both highly acid can be used as substitutes.
Resemblances between the Rangpur and mandarin are obvious and numerous, and for this reason it is best included under the mandarin-like fruits. The rough lemon and Rangpur also exhibit rather close similarities and important differences.
Almost certainly of Indian origin, the Rangpur early spread throughout the Orient and to the East Indies. According to Webber (1943), it was introduced into Florida in the late nineteenth century by Reasoner Brothers of Oneco, who obtained seed from northwestern India. The Rangpur is of horticultural importance primarily as a rootstock both in the Orient and South America and as an ornamental.
See the Citrus Clonal Protection Program Variety Data for Rangpur
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