Citrus kumquat belongs to the root family. He is from Indochina. It is widespread in the wild, but its cultivation is permissible at home.
Under natural conditions, the kumquat plant grows to 3-4 m, and when grown home, it reaches a height of 1.5 m. It has a strongly branched dense spherical crown formed by small dark green foliage 4-6 cm long and 1.5-2 cm long. a width having translucent glands and a smooth surface.
The scientific name "fortunella" is given to citrus fruit by the name of gardener-collector Robert Fortune who brought it from China to Europe. Translated, its Japanese name means "golden orange."
The flowers are axillary, white, located singly or 2-3 in inflorescences. Fruits are rounded in small sizes, 2.0-2.5 cm in diameter, weighing up to 30 g. The skin color is golden-orange. Fruits in appearance resemble small elongated oranges.
Citrus bears fruit in the last days of winter-early spring, 2-3 months after the flowering stage. To taste, the fruit resembles mandarin, are slightly acidic. Edible not only pulp, but also peel.
The main place of growth is the southern part of China. But kumquat is also cultivated:
- in the southeastern part of Asia,
- in Japan,
- in the Middle East,
- in the European south, especially in Greece, on the island of Corfu,
- in southern America, especially in the state of Florida.
The culture prefers fertile sandy loamy soils, requires moderate humidity, grows in well-lit places, where the temperature regime is kept within 25-30 ° С. Some varieties are able to withstand a temperature drop of -10-15 ° C.
The chemical composition of 100 g of kumquat contains:
- vitamins: 43.9 mg ascorbic acid, 0.037 mg B1, 0.090 mg B, 0.429 mg B3, 0.208 mg B5, 0.036 mg B6, 290 mg A, 0.15 μg E,
- trace elements: 62 mg of calcium, 186 mg of potassium, 0.86 mg of iron, 0.095 mg of copper, 20 mg of magnesium, 10 mg of sodium, 19 mg of phosphorus, 0.17 mg of zinc,
- fatty acids: 0.103 g saturated, 0.154 g unsaturated, 0.171 g polyunsaturated.
Calories - 71 kcal per 100 g of product, where:
- up to 80.85% - water,
- up to 1.88% - proteins,
- up to 0.86% - fats,
- up to 6.5% - dietary fiber,
- up to 15.9% - carbohydrates.
Variety Nagami is best suited for growing a house
There are 6 varieties of kinkan.
Nagami is the most popular variety, also known as Margarita. This is a large shrub that bears fruit year-round and is resistant to frost. The fruits resemble a large olive in appearance.
- Nordmann. Differs in the absence of seeds,
- Variegated. This is a small plant without thorns with cream or pale yellow foliage, the fruits are oblong, at the stage of formation they have longitudinal stripes that disappear when ripe.
Fukushi is a variety with a lush symmetrical crown. It has stems without thorns and wide oval-shaped leaves.
The species is resistant to low temperatures, has larger pear-shaped fruits up to 5 cm long compared to other types.
Marumi citrus grows to a height of 2.7 m. It is characterized by an increased number of thorns on the stems. Fruits are slightly flattened, rounded, up to 3.2 cm long.
Outwardly, the species resembles Nagami, winter-resistant.
The Hong Kong species differs from others in dry fruits the size of a small pea. Their diameter is up to 2.0 cm, because the plant also has the name "golden bean". Fruits of this species are almost never eaten.
This is a stunted plant, its height is up to 1.0 m. The spines on the stems of the crop are shorter compared to those characteristic of other crops.
The main place of growth is Hong Kong and several Chinese regions closest to it.
In Chinese cooking, fruit is often used as a seasoning.
Meiva is a rare variety with fruits up to 4 cm in diameter, characterized by bright taste and resembling lemon. It also resembles this fruit to taste.
The variety grows on the Malay Peninsula, where it is grown as a hedge.
Growing at home
At home, kumquat often grows as a houseplant. It is rarely grown from seeds: young seedlings of citrus kumquat have a weak root system, so it is problematic to take care of the seedlings.
The most suitable citrus variety for indoor cultivation is Nagami, which is often used in the decoration of bonsai gardens.
In the process of leaving the plant provide abundant regular watering and frequent spraying, especially in the summer season. It needs a transplant every 2-3 years. Without fertilizer complexes in the process of care does not bear fruit. At the growth stage, fertilizers are applied with potassium and phosphorus once every 10 days, at the resting stage - once every 30 days.
Kumquat is to be consumed fresh and processed. It is a component in the preparation of jam, marmalade and liquors. Some species are grown as an ornamental houseplant.