Citrus Guide

citrus clementines

During the cold winter months, the citrus category shines brightly, bringing warmth, joy and delicious fruit! From grapefruit to pomelo, kumquat, orange, tangerine, citron and more–we’ve got you covered with our comprehensive winter citrus guide.

Citron

Buddha’s Hand Citron 

buddhas-hand-citron
Photo: Wikipedia 

  • Flavor: Bitter-sweet. Primarily used as a zest for flavoring sweet and savory applications 
  • Description: Looks like a lemon with long finger like segments growing from it. Contains no juice, seeds, or pulp. The aroma is sweet, a bit lemony, and a little like lavender. 
  • In Season: Late fall through early winter. 

 

Grapefruit

Cocktail Grapefruit

cocktail grapefruit

Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: Sweet, a little tart but not sour. Low acidity. Very juicy.
  • Description: Seeded. A cross between a mandarin and a sweet pomelo. Sometimes called a mandelo.
  • In Season: Winter – early spring 

 

Marsh Ruby Grapefruit 

Marsh Ruby Grapefruit
Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: Juicy, balanced flavor between sweet and a low, tangy acidity. 
  • Description: Generally seedless. Aromatic with floral undertones. The smooth, pale semi-thick yellow skin is speckled with prominent oil glands. The flesh is tender and pale pink to red. 
  • In Season: Winter – late spring 

 

Oro Blanco Grapefruit 

oro blanco grapefruit
Photo: goodeggs.com 

  • Flavor: Floral scent, delicate sweet juicy flavor with no acidic or bitter aftertaste.  
  • Description: Large fruit with thick yellow-green skin and pale yellow, nearly seedless and segmented flesh. A cross between a white grapefruit and a pomelo. 
  • In Season: September – December. 

 

Rio Red Grapefruit 

Rio Red Grapefruit

  • Flavor: Sweet, mildly tart, and super juicy. 
  • Description: Seedless with deep red flesh. 
  • In Season: October – June 

 

Star Ruby Grapefruit 

Star Ruby Grapefruit

  • Flavor: Ruby red pulp is juicy with sweet-tart flavor 
  • Description: Contains few, if any, seeds. The peel is medium-thick and aromatic. 
  • In Season: Late winter through summer months. 

 

Lemon

Meyer Lemon 

Marsh Ruby Grapefruit

  • Flavor: Sweet with moderate acidity. Lacks the tang from regular lemons.  
  • Description: Thought to be a cross between a true lemon and a mandarin or orange. Round and small with smooth, thin skin that can range from deep yellow to orange. Can be used for its fragrant zest, sweet juice and segments, or even candied whole. The rind is fragrant with notes of herb and spice. 
  • In Season: November – January 

 

Pink Lemon 

Variegated pink lemon
Photo: foodnetwork.com 

  • Flavor: Less tart than regular lemons, with a more fruity, floral flavor.  
  • Description: Colorful green-yellow patterned skin with bright pink flesh. 
  • In Season: November – March. 

Kumquat

Limequat 

limequat
Photo: libertyprim.com 

  • Flavor: Sweet-tasting skin and mildly bitter pulp, with a flavor similar to limes. 
  • Description: Small, oval, greenish-yellow and contains seeds. The fruit can be eaten whole or the juice and rind can be used to flavor drinks and dishes. 
  • In Season: Winter – Spring. 

 

Meiwa Kumquat 

Meiwa Kumquat
Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: The flesh is tart, while the skin is sweet. Eating both together will create a sweet-tart flavor balance. 
  • Description: The entire fruit is edible, including the skin and the occasional soft seeds. The thick, aromatic peel, which is high in volatile oils, offers a nice flavor. 
  • In Season: Late winter to early spring 

 

Nagami Kumquat 

Nagami Kumquat
Photo: fourwindsgrowers.com 

  • Flavor: The skin offers a sweet taste while the flesh is acidic, developing an overall complex, spicy, and sweet-tart flavor. 
  • Description: The entire fruit is edible, including the skin, flesh, and seeds. Highly aromatic. 
  • In Season: Late winter to early spring. 

 

Lime

Finger Lime 

finger lime
Photo: bienmanger.com 

  • Flavor: Tart and zesty; slightly less sour than the standard lime. 
  • Description: Finger like fruit that is filled with caviar like pearls bursting with lime flavor. Also known as “citrus caviar.” Prized by many for adding flavor and texture to any number of dishes.  
  • In Season: July – January 

 

Sweet Lime 

sweet-lime
Photo: freshoponline.com 

  • Flavor: Low acidity, creating a mild, saccharine flavor with subtle honey notes. 
  • Description: Has few seeds. Aromatic and juicy—this fruit can be eaten fresh or used as a garnish for any number of desserts or savory dishes. Yellow-ish orange skin and flesh. 
  • In Season: July – August 

 

Mandarin

Clementine Mandarin 

Clementine Mandarin

  • Flavor: Sweet with less acid than oranges. 
  • Description: Almost always seedless. Easy to peel. Cross between a mandarin and sweet orange. 
  • In Season: October – February 

 

Fremont Mandarin 

Fremont Mandarins
Photo: ozlerziraat.com 

  • Flavor: Superbly rich, bright flavor with nice balance of sweet and tart. 
  • Description: Has few seeds. The skin is brilliant dark reddish-orange, smooth, fairly thin and easy to remove. Cross of the Clementine and the Ponkan mandarin varieties. 
  • In Season: December – January 

 

Gold Nugget Mandarin 

Gold Nugget Tangerine
Photo: Melissas.com 

  • Flavor: Rich, delicious, full-bodied taste. 
  • Description: Seedless, easy to peel. A cross between two noncommercial tangerine varieties: the Wilking and Kincy. A great juicer, averaging 50% juice content. Deep orange colored flesh with a moderately fine texture. 
  • In Season: Early spring through late summer. 

 

Lee Mandarin 

lee mandarin
Photo: clausennursery.com 

  • Flavor: Rich sweet taste, extremely juicy, and has a very high sugar content. 
  • Description: Very bright color. Thin, leathery skin peels fairly easily.  
  • In Season: November to January. 

 

Lee Nova Mandarin 

lee nova
Photo: fourwindsgrowers.com 

  • Flavor: Rich, sweet, and bursting with juice. 
  • Description: Seedless, reddish-orange fruit with a thin rind that makes for easy peeling.  
  • In Season: Spring. 

 

Nova Mandarin

Photo: bsafresh.com 

  • Flavor: Juicy with a sweet, rich flavor. 
  • Description: Few seeds. The flesh is dark orange and fine-textured. Cross between a Clementine and Orlando Tangelo.  
  • In Season: October – January. 

 

Page Mandarin 

Page Mandarin
Photo: Melissas.com 

  • Flavor: The flesh is tender and juicy, rich and very sweet. 
  • Description: Seedless. Medium to small, with a round shape. Both the skin and flesh are deep orange colored. Cross between a Clementine and Minneola tangelo. 
  • In Season: November – April 

 

Royal Mandarin  

Royal Mandarin
Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: Zesty sweet orange flavor, juicy and acidic with some lemon undertones  
  • Description: Some seeds. Easy to peel, thin, pebbly orange-red skin. The fruit sections easily. Hybrid of the Mandarin and sweet orange, with very little pith. Also known as the Temple mandarin or Temple orange. 
  • In Season: January – March 

 

Tango Mandarin 

Tango Mandarin
Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: Juicy flesh with a sweet-tart flavor 
  • Description: Seedless. Thin orange rind that is easy to peel. Medium in size, averaging 2.5 inches in diameter, with a squat shape and smooth skin. 
  • In Season: January – May 

 

Orange

Blood Orange 

Blood Orange

  • Flavor: art and sweet flavor. The juice is rich and delicious with undertones of fresh berries. 
  • Description: Easy to peel with few seeds. Provides a deep red juice. The skin and flesh ranges from orange to deep red. Anthocyanins, a type of antioxidant, give the orange its distinct maroon color. 
  • In Season: January – May 

 

Cara Cara Navel Orange 

Winter citrus Cara cara

  • Flavor: Complex and rich. Sweeter than a typical Navel, slightly tangy and less acidic, with a hint of berry flavor. 
  • Description: Beautiful pink flesh with juicy, berry rich flavor. Contains 20% more Vitamin C than standard Navel orange. 
  • In Season: December – April 

 

Navel Orange 

Navel Orange 

  • Flavor: Richly flavored. Great balance of sugar and acidity. 
  • Description: Seedless, the fruit separates into easy-to-eat segments. Has bright orange skin that peels easily when fully mature. 
  • In Season: January – April  

 

Valencia Orange 

Valencia Orange

  • Flavor: Nice balance of sugary-tart flavor, making them popular juicing oranges.
  • Description: Mostly seedless. The juice is refreshing and can be stored for a long time since the natural compound Limonin, which turns the fruit bitter, is found in the seeds and not in the flesh. 
  • In Season: March – September 

 

Pomelo

African Shaddock Pomelo 

African Shaddock winter citrus pomelo

  • Flavor: Low acidity, with a sweet tart flavor 
  • Description: Medium thick, bright yellow skin and soft textured pith flesh. It is segmented, a lovely pale-yellow or pink color. Juicy and fragrant. 
  • In Season: December – February 

 

Chandler Pomelo 

Citrus - Chandler Pomelo
Photo: SpecialtyProduce.com 

  • Flavor: Juicy, mostly sweet with some acidic notes. No lingering bitterness. 
  • Description: Large with thick rind and light to dark pink flesh. Some seeds are present. 
  • In Season: December – February 

 

Valentine Pomelo 

Valentine Pomelo

  • Flavor: Low acid with satisfying saccharine flavor and a tart aftertaste. 
  • Description: Easy-to-peel. Combination of a Pomelo, a mandarin, and a blood orange. It resembles a heart shape when cut in half, with vibrant, red-pigmented flesh. Also called a Red Globe Pomelo.  
  • In Season: December – February 

 

Tangerine

Daisy Tangerine 

Citrus - Daisy Tangerine

  • Flavor: Juicy with a full-bodied, sweet flavor when mature. 
  • Description: Contains very few seeds. Medium-large hybrid mandarin variety. Cross between Fortune mandarin and Fremont mandarin. Squatty-round shape with a deep orange, very smooth rind that is extremely easy to peel. 
  • In Season: November – March 

 

Dancy Tangerine 

Citrus - Dancy Tangerine
Photo: SpecialtyProduce.com 

  • Flavor: Sweet and tart flavor, with hints of spice. 
  • Description: Unusually high red-orange color. Distinctive tangerine flavor and aroma. Versatile and can be added to salads, eaten raw, or have its rind used for zest. 
  • In Season: November – January  

 

Fairchild Tangerine 

Fairchild Tangerine

Photo: SpecialtyProduce.com 

  • Flavor: Juicy, rich flavor. One of the sweetest of the tangerine family. 
  • Description: Bright orange flesh with an average of 2 seeds per section. Medium-thin rind is slightly pebbled in texture and clings to the flesh. Cross between a Clementine tangerine and an Orlando tangelo. Sweetness increases through the season. Great for juicing! 
  • In Season: Late fall and through the winter months 

 

Honey Tangerine 

honey tangerine
Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: Sweet and juicy with notes of honey and spice.  
  • Description: Has thin, pale orange rinds with conspicuous oil glands which give its surface a pebbled texture. The oils in the rind give off a flavorful aroma. 
  • In Season: January to April 

 

Kishu Tangerine 

Kishu Tangerine
Photo: Friedas.com 

  • Flavor: Super sweet – considered one of the most delicious mandarins. 
  • Description: Seedless. Smaller than a golf ball, and very easy to peel. 
  • In Season: January. Kishus have a short season and are only available in January so act fast! 

 

Murcott Tangerine 

Citrus - Murcott Tangerine
Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: Very sweet, extremely juicy flesh.  
  • Description: Mostly seedless, flat in shape, and easy to peel. Both flesh and juice are vibrant red/orange. A cross between a tangerine and a sweet orange.  
  • In Season: February – April 

 

Minneola Tangerine 

minneola
Photo: Lgssales.com 

  • Flavor: Perfect blend of sweet and tart flavor. Very juicy. 
  • Description: Almost seedless. Loose red-orange skin that is easy to peel. A cross between a Duncan grapefruit and a Dancy Tangerine. Nicknamed the “Honeybell” because of its bell shape. 
  • In Season: December – April  

 

Orlando Tangerine (Tangelo)

Orlando Tangelo
Photo: Backyardcitrustrees.com 

  • Flavor: Very juicy, with a sweet-tart flavor. 
  • Description: Very few seeds and easy to peel. Cross between a mandarin and a pomelo. Medium to large, but a bit smaller than the Minneola variety. The peel is medium thick and usually has a pebbly surface. 
  • In Season: November – February . 

 

Pixie Tangerine 

Pixie Tangerine

  • Flavor: Amazingly sweet and moderately juicy.
  • Description: Seedless. Very popular tangerine variety grown in Ojai, California. Small size, pebbly textured, yellow-orange rinds with loose skin that peels easily.
  • In Season: February – May. 

 

Satsuma Tangerine 

Satsuma Tangerine 

  • Flavor: Provides a juicy, sugary experience. Low acid. 
  • Description: Seedless, small size, and very easy to peel. One of the most popular of all the tangerines. 
  • In Season: November – January  

 

TDE aka Triple Cross 

TDE (Triple Cross)
Photo: Specialtyproduce.com 

  • Flavor: Rich, saccharine flavor, that has a slightly tart essence. 
  • Description: Almost no seeds. Large fruit size, deep orange rind color. An unusual triple cross of a Temple tangor, a Dancy mandarin, and an Encore mandarin. 
  • In Season: February – March. 

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