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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The lemon, Citrus limon (L.) Osbeck, is a species of small evergreen

tree in the flowering plant family Rutaceae, native to Asia. Lemon

The tree's ellipsoidal yellow fruit is used for culinary and non-culinary
purposes throughout the world, primarily for its juice, which has both
culinary and cleaning uses.[2] The pulp and rind (zest) are also used in
cooking and baking. The juice of the lemon is about 5% to 6% citric
acid, with a pH of around 2.2, giving it a sour taste. The distinctive sour
taste of lemon juice makes it a key ingredient in drinks and foods such
as lemonade and lemon meringue pie.

A fruiting lemon tree. A blossom is also

Contents visible.

Scientific classification
1 History
2 Varieties Kingdom: Plantae
3 Nutritional value and phytochemicals
4 Culinary uses (unranked): Angiosperms
5 Other uses (unranked): Eudicots
5.1 Industrial
5.2 As a cleaning agent (unranked): Rosids
5.3 Medicinal
Order: Sapindales
5.4 Other
6 Horticulture Family: Rutaceae
7 Production
8 Lemon alternatives Genus: Citrus
9 Gallery Species: C. limon
10 See also
11 References Binomial name
12 External links
Citrus limon
(L.) Osbeck

History Synonyms[1]
The origin of the lemon is unknown, though lemons are thought to have
Citrus aurantium subsp.
first grown in Assam (a region in northeast India), northern Burma or
China.[2] A study of the genetic origin of the lemon reported it to be bergamia (Risso & Poit.) Engl.
hybrid between bitter orange (sour orange) and citron.[3][4] Citrus aurantium subsp.
bergamia (Risso) Wight & Arn.
Lemons entered Europe near southern Italy no later than the second
century AD, during the time of Ancient Rome.[2] However, they were Citrus aurantium var.
not widely cultivated. They were later introduced to Persia and then to bergamia (Risso) Brandis
Iraq and Egypt around 700 AD.[2] The lemon was first recorded in Citrus aurantium var.
literature in a 10th-century Arabic treatise on farming, and was also mellarosa (Risso) Engl.
used as an ornamental plant in early Islamic gardens.[2] It was
distributed widely throughout the Arab world and the Mediterranean Citrus bergamia Risso &
region between 1000 and 1150.[2] Poit.
Citrus bergamia subsp.
mellarosa (Risso) D.Rivera &
The first substantial cultivation of lemons in Europe began in Genoa in al.
the middle of the 15th century. The lemon was later introduced to the
Citrus bergamota Raf.
Americas in 1493 when Christopher Columbus brought lemon seeds to
Hispaniola on his voyages. Spanish conquest throughout the New Citrus limodulcis D.Rivera,
World helped spread lemon seeds. It was mainly used as an ornamental Obn & F.Mndez
plant and for medicine.[2] In the 19th century, lemons were increasingly Citrus limonelloides Hayata
planted in Florida and California.[2]
Citrus limonia Osbeck
In 1747, James Lind's experiments on seamen suffering from scurvy Citrus limonia var. digitata
involved adding lemon juice to their diets, though vitamin C was not Risso
yet known.[2][5]
Citrus limonum Risso
The origin of the word "lemon" may be Middle Eastern.[2] The word Citrus medica var. limon L.
draws from the Old French limon, then Italian limone, from the Arabic Citrus medica f. limon (L.)
laymn or lmn, and from the Persian lmn, a generic term for citrus
fruit, which is a cognate of Sanskrit (nimb, lime).[6]
Citrus medica f. limon (L.)
Varieties Hiro
Citrus medica subsp. limonia
The 'Bonnie Brae' is oblong, smooth, thin-skinned, and seedless,[7] (Risso) Hook. f.
mostly grown in San Diego County.[8]
Citrus medica var.
The 'Eureka' grows year-round and abundantly. This is the common limonum (Risso) Brandis
supermarket lemon,[9] also known as 'Four Seasons' (Quatre Saisons) Citrus medica subsp.
because of its ability to produce fruit and flowers together throughout
limonum (Risso) Engl.
the year. This variety is also available as a plant to domestic
customers.[10] There is also a pink-fleshed Eureka lemon, with a green Citrus medica var. limonum
and yellow variegated outer skin.[11] (Risso) Brandis
Citrus mellarosa Risso
The 'Femminello St. Teresa', or 'Sorrento'[12] is native to Italy. This
fruit's zest is high in lemon oils. It is the variety traditionally used in the Citrus meyeri Yu.Tanaka
making of limoncello. Citrus vulgaris Ferrarius ex
The 'Meyer' is a cross between a lemon and possibly an orange or a
mandarin, and was named after Frank N. Meyer, who first introduced it Limon vulgaris Ferrarius ex
to the USA in 1908. Thin-skinned and slightly less acidic than the Miller
Lisbon and Eureka lemons, Meyer lemons require more care when
shipping and are not widely grown on a commercial basis. Meyer
lemons often mature to a yellow-orange color. They are slightly more
frost-tolerant than other lemons.

The 'Ponderosa' is more cold-sensitive than true lemons; the fruit are
thick-skinned and very large. It is likely a citron-lemon hybrid.
Lemon external surface and cross-section
The 'Yen Ben' is an Australasian cultivar.[13]

Nutritional value and phytochemicals

Lemons are a rich source of vitamin C, providing 64% of the Daily Value in a 100 g serving (table). Other
essential nutrients, however, have insignificant content (table).

Lemons contain numerous phytochemicals, including polyphenols, terpenes, and tannins.[14] As with other
citrus fruits, they have significant concentrations of citric acid (about 47 g/l in juice).[15]
Culinary uses
Lemon juice, rind, and zest are used in a wide variety of foods and
drinks. Lemon juice is used to make lemonade, soft drinks, and
cocktails. It is used in marinades for fish, where its acid neutralizes
amines in fish by converting them into nonvolatile ammonium
salts, and meat, where the acid partially hydrolyzes tough collagen
fibers, tenderizing the meat, but the low pH denatures the proteins,
causing them to dry out when cooked. Lemon juice is frequently
used in the United Kingdom to add to pancakes, especially on
Shrove Tuesday.

Lemon juice is also used as a short-term preservative on certain

foods that tend to oxidize and turn brown after being sliced
(enzymatic browning), such as apples, bananas, and avocados,
where its acid denatures the enzymes.

Lemon juice and rind are used to make marmalade, lemon curd and Detailed taxonomic illustration byFranz
lemon liqueur. Lemon slices and lemon rind are used as a garnish Eugen Khler.
for food and drinks. Lemon zest, the grated outer rind of the fruit,
is used to add flavor to baked goods, puddings, rice, and other
dishes. Lemon, raw, without peel
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
The leaves of the lemon tree are used to make a tea and for preparing
cooked meats and seafoods. Energy 121 kJ (29 kcal)
Carbohydrates 9.32 g
Other uses Sugars 2.5 g
Dietary fiber 2.8 g
Industrial Fat 0.3 g
Protein 1.1 g
Lemons were the primary commercial source of citric acid before the
development of fermentation-based processes.[16] Vitamins
Thiamine (B1) 0.04 mg (3%)
As a cleaning agent Riboflavin (B2) 0.02 mg (2%)
Niacin (B3) 0.1 mg (1%)
The juice of the lemon may be used for cleaning. A halved lemon Pantothenic acid (B5) 0.19 mg (4%)
dipped in salt or baking powder is used to brighten copper cookware. Vitamin B6 0.08 mg (6%)
The acid dissolves the tarnish and the abrasives assist the cleaning. As
Folate (B9) 11 g (3%)
a sanitary kitchen deodorizer the juice can deodorize, remove grease,
Choline 5.1 mg (1%)
bleach stains, and disinfect; when mixed with baking soda, it removes
Vitamin C 53 mg (64%)
stains from plastic food storage containers.[17] The oil of the lemon's
peel also has various uses. It is used as a wood cleaner and polish, Minerals
where its solvent property is employed to dissolve old wax, Calcium 26 mg (3%)
fingerprints, and grime. Lemon oil and orange oil are also used as a Iron 0.6 mg (5%)
nontoxic insecticide treatment. Magnesium 8 mg (2%)
Manganese 0.03 mg (1%)
A halved lemon is used as a finger moistener for those counting large
amounts of bills, such as tellers and cashiers. Phosphorus 16 mg (2%)
Potassium 138 mg (3%)
Medicinal Zinc 0.06 mg (1%)

Lemon oil may be used in aromatherapy. Lemon oil aroma does not Link to USDA Database entry

influence the human immune system,[18] but may contribute to Units

relaxation.[19] g = micrograms mg = milligrams
Other IU = International units
Percentages are roughly approximated using
One educational science experiment involves attaching electrodes to a US recommendations for adults.
lemon and using it as a battery to produce electricity. Although very Source: USDA Nutrient Database
low power, several lemon batteries can power a small digital watch.[20]
These experiments also work with other fruits and vegetables.

Lemon juice may be used as a simple invisible ink, developed by heat.[21]

Lemons need a minimum temperature of around 7 C (45 F), so they are not hardy year round in temperate
climates, but become hardier as they mature.[22] Citrus require minimal pruning by trimming overcrowded
branches, with the tallest branch cut back to encourage bushy growth.[22] Throughout summer, pinching back
tips of the most vigorous growth assures more abundant canopy development. As mature plants may produce
unwanted, fast-growing shoots called water shoots, these are removed from the main branches at the bottom
or middle of the plant.[22]

In 2014, world production of lemons (data combined with
Lemon production (with limes)
limes) was 16.3 million tonnes.[23] The top producers were
India, Mexico, China, Argentina, and Brazil, collectively (in millions of tonnes)
accounting for 59% of total production (table).[23]
Country 2014
Lemon alternatives India 2.8

Mexico 2.2
Many plants taste or smell similar to lemons.
China 2.1
Certain cultivars of basil
Cymbopogon (lemongrass) Argentina 1.4
Lemon balm, a mint-like herbaceous perennial in the Brazil 1.1
Lamiaceae family
Two varieties of scented geranium: Pelargonium World 16.3
crispum (lemon geranium) and Pelargonium x
melissinum (lemon balm)
Lemon thyme
Lemon verbena
Limes, another common sour citrus fruit, used similarly to lemons
Certain cultivars of mint
Magnolia grandiflora tree flowers

Flower Lemon seedling Mature lemons

Full-sized tree Variegated pink lemon

See also
List of lemon dishes and beverages
Food portal

1. "The Plant List:Citrus limon (L.) Osbeck" (http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/tro-28101295).
Royal Botanic Gardens Kew and Missouri Botanic Garden. Retrieved February 20, 2017.
2. Julia F. Morton (1987). "Lemon in Fruits of Warm Climates" (http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/mort
on/lemon.html#Description). Purdue University. pp. 160168.
3. Gulsen, O.; M. L. Roose (2001). "Lemons: Diversity and Relationships with Selected Citrus Genotypes
as Measured with Nuclear Genome Markers". Journal of the American Society of Horticultural Science.
126: 309317.
4. Genetic origin of cultivated citrus determined: Researchers find evidence of origins of orange, lime,
lemon, grapefruit, other citrus species" (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110118101600.ht
m), Science Daily, January 26, 2011 (Retrieved February 10, 2017).
5. James Lind (1757). A treatise on the scurvy. Second edition. London: A. Millar.
6. Douglas Harper. "Online Etymology Dictionary" (http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=lemon).
7. Spalding, William A. (1885). The orange: its culture in California (https://books.google.com/books?id=_
&f=false). Riverside, California: Press and Horticulturist Steam Print. p. 88. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
8. Carque, Otto (2006) [1923]. Rational Diet: An Advanced Treatise on the Food Question (https://books.go
age&q=Bonnie%20Brae%20lemon&f=false). Los Angeles, California: Kessinger Publishing. p. 195.
ISBN 978-1-4286-4244-7. Retrieved March 2, 2012.
9. "Complete List of Four Winds Dwarf Citrus Varieties" (http://www.fourwindsgrowers.com/our-citrus-tre
es/lemon/principal-lemon-varieties.html). Fourwindsgrowers.com. Retrieved June 6, 2010.
10. Buchan, Ursula (January 22, 2005). "Kitchen garden: lemon tree" (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/gardening/
3325753/Kitchen-garden-lemon-tree.html). The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved January 24, 2014.
11. Vaiegated pink (http://www.citrusvariety.ucr.edu/citrus/variegatedpink.html) at the Citrus Variety
12. "Taste of a thousand lemons" (http://www.latimes.com/features/la-fo-limoncello8sep08,0,771590.story).
Los Angeles Times. September 8, 2004. Retrieved November 21, 2011.
13. "New Zealand Citrus" (http://ceventura.ucdavis.edu/ben/citrus/misc/new_zealand.htm).
ceventura.ucdavis.edu. Retrieved June 13, 2010.
14. Rauf A, Uddin G, Ali J (2014). "Phytochemical analysis and radical scavenging profile of juices of
Citrus sinensis, Citrus anrantifolia, and Citrus limonum" (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PM
C4091952). Org Med Chem Lett. 4: 5. PMC 4091952 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4
091952) . PMID 25024932 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25024932). doi:10.1186/2191-2858-
4-5 (https://doi.org/10.1186%2F2191-2858-4-5).
15. Penniston KL, Nakada SY, Holmes RP, Assimos DG (2008). "Quantitative Assessment of Citric Acid in
Lemon Juice, Lime Juice, and Commercially-Available Fruit Juice Products" (http://www.liebertonline.c
om/doi/pdfplus/10.1089/end.2007.0304) (PDF). Journal of Endourology. 22 (3): 567570.
PMC 2637791 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2637791) . PMID 18290732 (https://w
ww.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18290732). doi:10.1089/end.2007.0304 (https://doi.org/10.1089%2Fend.2
16. M. Hofrichter (2010). Industrial Applications (https://books.google.com/books?id=80XBNrGsIywC&pg
=PA224). Springer. p. 224. ISBN 978-3-642-11458-8.
17. "6 ingredients for a green, clean home" (http://shine.yahoo.com/work-money/6-ingredients-for-a-green-cl
ean-home-155345.html). Shine. Retrieved April 24, 2008.
18. Kiecolt-Glaser, J. K.; Graham, J. E.; Malarkey, W. B.; Porter, K; Lemeshow, S; Glaser, R (2008).
"Olfactory influences on mood and autonomic, endocrine, and immune function" (https://www.ncbi.nlm.
nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2278291). Psychoneuroendocrinology. 33 (3): 32839. PMC 2278291 (https://
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2278291) . PMID 18178322 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pu
bmed/18178322). doi:10.1016/j.psyneuen.2007.11.015 (https://doi.org/10.1016%2Fj.psyneuen.2007.11.0
19. Cooke, B; Ernst, E (2000). "Aromatherapy: A systematic review" (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art
icles/PMC1313734/pdf/10962794.pdf) (PDF). British Journal of General Practice. 50 (455): 4936.
PMC 1313734 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1313734) . PMID 10962794 (https://w
20. "Lemon Power" (http://www.energyquest.ca.gov/projects/lemon.html). California Energy Commission.
Retrieved December 7, 2014.
21. Mirsky, Steve (April 20, 2010). "Invisible Ink and More: The Science of Spying in the Revolutionary
War" (https://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode/invisible-ink-and-other-science-of-10-04-
20/). Scientific American. Retrieved October 15, 2016.
22. "Citrus" (https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/grow-your-own/fruit/citrus). Royal Horticultural Society. 2017.
Retrieved 19 April 2017.
23. "Production in 2014; Crops/Regions/World/Production Quantity from pick lists" (http://faostat3.fao.org/b
rowse/Q/QC/E). Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Statistics Division
(FAOSTAT). 2016. Retrieved 30 May 2017.

External links
Data related to Citrus limon at Wikispecies

Retrieved from "https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Lemon&oldid=797086110"

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