Selection of ornamental citrus

When we talk about citrus, that is, orange, mandarin, lemon and other trees, we usually think that they are fruit trees. Nothing more. Plants that produce fruits suitable for consumption. But…, what if I told you that in addition to that they can be used to increase the ornamental value of our garden or patio?

Yes indeed. These trees can not only be in an orchard, but can also be part of the areas where we would not normally put them. And for sample, here is a selection of ornamental citrus .


What is a citrus?

Lemons, the fruit of the lemon tree

First of all, let’s see what a citrus is. It is more than likely that we know several types, and that we even have some, but the word »citrus» being not used much, we may not know what it means. Well, it’s time to solve this question.

The term “citrus” refers to the trees and seedlings of the botanical genus Citrus. These plants are evergreen (that is, they remain evergreen) that reach a height of between 5 and 15 meters. But its most notable characteristic is that its fruits or fruits have a high content of vitamin C and citric acid , which is what gives it that peculiar acid taste.

And now that we know this, let’s move on to what probably interests us most: ornamental citrus.

List of citrus for the garden


Citrus reticulata or mandarin tree in a garden

The mandarin, whose scientific name is Citrus reticulata , is a tree native to tropical Asia that reaches a height of about 6-7 meters .

Its crown is round, quite dense, composed of oval leaves which measure about 7-8cm long. Its flowers are small but very fragrant.

Orange tree

Specimen of dwarf orange tree

The orange tree, whose scientific name is Citrus x sinensis, is a tree native to India, Pakistan, Vietnam and southeastern China. It is popularly known as orange tree, orange tree or sweet orange tree and reaches a height of about 13 meters , although in cultivation it is not usually allowed to exceed 5-6m.

It has a cup that is usually round or, more rarely, pyramidal. Its leaves are oval and measure 7 to 10cm. Its beautiful white flowers, called orange blossoms, are very fragrant.

bitter orange

Citrus aurantium tree, the bitter orange

The bitter orange tree, whose scientific name is Citrus x aurantium , is a hybrid tree between Citrus maxima and Citrus reticulata that reaches a height of 7 to 8 meters . It is popularly known as sour orange, bigarade orange, Andalusian orange, Seville orange, cashier orange and puppy orange.

It has a very dense round crown made up of elliptical leaves 5 to 11cm long. The flowers are white and very fragrant. Its fruits, as its popular name indicates, are not edible.


Grapefruit tree in a patio, where it looks great

Image –

The grapefruit, whose scientific name is Citrus x paradisi , is a tree that is the fruit of a natural hybrid produced in plantations in the Caribbean Sea around the 17th century. It is popularly known as grapefruit, grapefruit, grapefruit or grapefruit, and reaches a height of 5 to 6 meters .

It has a rounded and sparse crown made up of simple, ovate leaves between 7 and 15cm long. The flowers are fragrant, white or purple in color.

lime tree

Specimen of Citrus aurantiifolia in a garden

Image – Wikipedia/Forest & Kim Starr

The lime tree, whose scientific name is Citrus x aurantifolia , is a hybrid tree of Citrus micrantha x Citrus medica that emerged in Southeast Asia and reaches a height of about 6 meters .

Its appearance is very reminiscent of the orange tree: round or pyramidal crown, intense green leaves, and fruit shape, but the truth is that their similarities end there. Lime fruits can range from green to yellow and more or less acidic depending on the cultivar.

Lemon Tree

Lemon tree, a very interesting fruit tree for gardens

The lemon tree, whose scientific name is Citrus x limon , is a tree native to Assam, a region in southeastern India, northern Burma and China. It is popularly known as the lemon tree or lemon tree. It reaches a height of 4-5 meters .

It has a round crown that can even be parasolized by pruning. The leaves are simple and measure about 5-10cm. It produces white flowers, small but very perfumed, and some fruits that, although they cannot be consumed directly, are very useful for sweetening dishes.

What care do they need?

Beautiful citrus flower, ideal for a more beautiful garden

Did you like these citrus fruits? Surely you had ever seen them in nurseries but you did not buy them because you thought they could only be in a garden, but now that you know that they are also very ornamental plants, if you want to acquire a specimen -or several- we recommend that you provide it with the following care:

  • Location : outside, in full sun.
  • Earth :
    • Pot: it must be a universal culture substrate mixed with 30% perlite. It is highly advisable to put a first layer of clay or volcanic clay so that the drainage is perfect.
    • Garden: grow in slightly acidic, loose soils. In limestone, a regular supply (every 15 or 20 days) of iron sulfate will be necessary.
  • Watering : frequent, especially in summer. Typically, it will be watered 3-4 times during the hottest season and every 5-6 days the rest of the year. Use water without lime or not very hard.
  • Fertilizer : from spring to early autumn it should be fertilized with an organic fertilizer, being powdered if it is planted in the ground or liquid if it is in a pot. Guano is a very good option as it is rich in essential nutrients for growth and flowering, such as phosphorus.
  • Pruning : at the end of winter dry, diseased or weak branches can be removed. In addition, those that are growing too much can be trimmed, giving the tree a “wild” look.
  • Planting or transplanting time : in spring, when the risk of frost has passed. If it is in a pot, it must be transplanted every 2-3 years.
  • Hardiness : it will depend on the species, but in general it can withstand cold and frost down to -4ºC.

And with this we end. What did you think of this article? I really hope that it will serve so that every time we can see these wonderful trees in the gardens, patio or even on the balconies, as well as of course in the gardens. They are very beautiful and easy to take care of: with the knowledge that I have provided you, you will be able to enjoy them from the first day.

Selection of ornamental citrus

Leave a Reply

Scroll to top