Lemons in the garden
Citrus limon is a fruit tree, cultivated in Europe for centuries; originally from India and Asia; although it has always been considered a rare species, the citrus limon is an ancient natural hybrid, probably born from the crossing of the cedar with another species of citrus fruit.
Lemons produce two blooms a year, in spring and late summer, followed by two fruiting; the flowers are white and delicately scented, the fruits are yellow, oval, with a thin and very aromatic peel and juicy pulp, more or less harsh depending on the variety.
The fruits, produced as a result of flowering, can remain on the tree even a couple of months after complete maturation, without losing any of their qualities; for this reason it is possible that ripe fruits, green fruits, fruit trees and flowers coexist on the same plant. In fact, for family consumption the fruits are picked when needed, without detaching them from the plant prematurely.
In reality one of the merits of citrus limon it is also the fact that these fruits can safely ripen even after being detached from the tree, so they are commercially taken from the plant when they reach the size suitable for sale.
Cultivation citrus limon
In Italy the cultivation of lemons has been taking place for centuries, because the Mediterranean climate is particularly suitable for the production of citrus fruits; the areas in which it is most easily cultivated are found in the south, where more difficult to precocious or late frosts or cold winds can compromise the harvest. In reality these plants can survive without problems in most of the peninsula, except in the northernmost areas, where the winter climate is too rigid. In fact, lemons can also bear frosts, but only if they are of slight entity and short duration: the very intense frost can lead to the complete loss of the foliage, and sometimes even to the desiccation of the outermost branches. Plants severely affected by frost hardly succumb, but they also tend to take a couple of years to recover and start flowering and producing fruit again.
So let's grow our citrus limon in a sunny place, sheltered from the wind; if we live in northern Italy, let's keep it in a pot, so that it can be stored in a cold greenhouse during the winter, to prevent the cold from "burning" the foliage and the first spring flowers.
Climate and terrain
These plants, despite enduring drought, do not particularly love it; avoid leaving the earthen bread around the roots completely dry for prolonged periods of time, watering regularly during the summer, and sporadically in autumn and winter.
For lemons, a good rich, slightly acid soil is used, which also has an excellent drainage, since water stagnation rapidly leads to radical, very damaging rots.
From April to September we provide specific fertilizer for flowering or fruit plants; often for lemons an excellent natural fertilizer is used, consisting of shredded dry lupins, which act as a slow release fertilizer.
Cultivation Lemon - Citrus limon: The uses of citrus limon
The use of lemons in Europe dates back to Roman times, when caravans of Asian merchants had strong contacts with European merchants; these fruits are used in the kitchen, generally they are not eaten fresh, but the sour juice is used for sweet and savory preparations.
In Italian cuisine, lemon is a fundamental ingredient, especially with fish, but also with vegetables and meats.
Commercially, very sour lemons are preferred, of which only concentrated juice is sold; in Italy, however, sweet fruit varieties are also grown, which can be eaten raw, or even used to make compotes, juice jams.
Lemon is rich in vitamin c, which acts as an antioxidant, especially in fresh fruit based preparations.