Get to know the different types of lemons grown all around the world. Dig even deeper by identifying the traits to look for in a good lemon and the benefits of eating them everyday.
Lemon is a citrus plant that originated in Asia, particularly in northeast India, northeast Myanmar, and China. Cultivation started in the 1st century AD while the top five countries that produce lemons are India, Mexico, China, Brazil, and Argentina.
The lemon tree is an evergreen tree that blooms year round and reaches 3-6 meters in height. It can also last 50-100 years old. Fruits are picked 6-10 times a year while one lemon tree can produce an average of 225-270 kgs. The most common types of lemons are Meyer, Eureka, and Lisbon lemons.
Lemon Nutrition Facts Chart
Now let’s jump into your lemon options.
This variety of lemons is very similar to the Lisbon lemon, which is one of the two main types of lemons commonly found in grocery stores, the other being the Eureka lemon. It originated in Florida.
It is believed that Bearss lemons originated in Italy from a variety that is now extinct. Similar to the Lisbon lemon, the current version of the Bearss lemon originated in the early 1950s in Florida and is a very popular variety for lemon-growers. It is considered a true lemon, and it is high in lemon oil. It is also popular because it produces high-quality fruit, a lot of lemons on each tree, and because of its peel.
Buddha’s Hand Lemons
Also known as Finger Citron lemons, these fruits are misshapen but very fragrant. It is not a round fruit but instead has numerous “fingers” that start at the top of the lemon. The pith and the rind, therefore, are where the culinary benefits come from since there is no juice or pulp in the fingers. Moreover, the lemons symbolize good fortune, happiness, and longevity in places such as China, and they are often included in temple offerings.
Also called rough lemons, the bush lemons have a very thick skin that is also very bumpy. They are similar to a true lemon in that the rind produces a very strong flavor. They are self-seeding lemons that have a strong taste, very little juice, and good hardiness that makes them perfect to use as a rootstock when grafting other varieties of lemons.
Citron lemons are used more for their rinds than anything else, in part because there is very little juice in this type of lemon. A very large fruit, it can grow up to 10 pounds in weight, and there are three distinct types of citron lemon.
These include the acidic pulp group, which includes varieties such as the Greek citron and the Florentine citron, the non-acidic pulp group, which includes varieties such as the Moroccan and the Corsican citron, and the pulp-free varieties, which include the Buddha’s Hand lemon and the Yemenite citron lemon. It also boasts that nearly every part of the lemon has an important use, from medicinal to culinary, so you can do much more than just eat the fruit itself.
Similar to the Eureka lemon, the Dorshapo lemon originated in the early 1900s and was developed by three growers, whose names make up the name of the lemon. These lemons are very sweet and are not very acidic.
Eureka lemons are the predominant lemon in most countries of the world. Different varieties of the lemon have been developed throughout the years, and it looks very similar to the Lisbon lemon. The main difference is that the Eureka lemons have a nipple end that is very prominent. It also comes from trees that are thorn-less and which bear fruit all year long, which is one of the reasons it is so popular among growers.
Fino Citron Lemons
These lemons resemble Verna lemons but have less juice and are much smaller. Fino citron lemons are not very popular because their trees have a lot of thorns, and, therefore, they are difficult and time-consuming to harvest. The average Fino citron lemon tree produces fruit twice a year, and this type of lemon is very acidic and has a very good flavor. It also has a few more seeds than many other types of lemons, which is yet another reason for its lack of popularity.
Greek Citron Lemons
Used in many different types of religious rituals throughout the centuries, it was initially found in the Ionian Islands. It is also known as the Corfu etrog, or simply the etrog.
Because it is long and has a prominent nipple end, the Lisbon lemon is very similar to the Eureka lemon. The two lemons also have slight pitting on the rind and have medium thickness. With few or no seeds, the Lisbon lemons are very acidic, and the differences between them and the Eureka lemon include:
- The Lisbon lemon does well in cooler climates, whereas the Eureka lemon needs warm weather to thrive.
- The Lisbon lemon tree produces fruit twice a year, whereas the Eureka tree can produce fruit all year long.
- The Lisbon tree is thorny, while the Eureka tree has no thorns.
- The Lisbon lemon has an end that is slightly pointed, whereas the Eureka lemon has a short neck end.
Meyer lemons are not true lemons, but, instead, they are a combination of a lemon and a sweet orange, such as a mandarin. They can be yellowish-orange in color and in the pulp, and they are very juicy and sweet, although they are also slightly acidic.
Meyer lemons are loved by professional chefs because of their taste and texture, and they can be used to make everything from tarts to sorbets. They have a very floral aroma and unlike most other lemons, Meyer lemons are not picked green but only when they turn the right shade of yellow-orange. Meyer lemon trees also produce fruit all year long.
Organic lemons are grown without pesticides and other chemicals, which is especially important if you’re going to use the lemons for their rinds, their peels, and even their juice. In fact, there are many good reasons to choose lemons that are organically grown over those that aren’t, and a little research on the Internet will tell you everything that you need to know.
Ponderosa lemons have thick and bumpy skins, and they are thought to be a cross between a lemon and a citron. It is not a true lemon and is more cold-sensitive than other types of lemons, with a very citrusy taste. It originated in the late 1880s in Maryland, and the fruit is smaller than true lemons.
There are two main types of lemons, the acidic lemons, and the sweet lemons, so the term “sweet” simply refers to the fact that these lemons are not acidic in nature. The lemons are known by many other names, including sweet lime, sweet limetta, and Mediterranean sweet lemon. Instead of being juiced, you can eat sweet lemons as fruits, and even the peel is beneficial because it has a large quantity of lemon oil in it.
True lemons are simply acidic forms of lemons, and some of the examples include both the Lisbon and the Eureka lemons. True lemons do not include sweet lemons or non-acidic citrus such as citron.
These are acidic lemons that are very similar to Eureka lemons. They have thick skins, only a few seeds, and they are extremely juicy. Their trees normally produce fruit twice a year, but in certain circumstances, it can produce a third batch of fruit during the year. Although no one knows for sure where Verna lemons originated from, most people think they came from Spain.
Miscellaneous Lemons – Less Well-Known Brands
Of the 50 varieties of lemons, the Avon lemons were the first to be grown in Florida, and they are mostly used to make a concentrate.
Similar to limes in taste, the Baboon lemon originated in Brazil and has a very bright yellow color.
Bonnie Brae Lemons
These lemons are found mostly in the San Diego area. The fruit is seedless, has skin that is very smooth, and it has a very oblong shape to it.
Cameron Highlands Lemons
These lemons originated in the Cameron Highlands section of Malaysia, and, in fact, they grew there in the wild. It is a small round lemon with a slightly green tint.
These lemons are a deep-yellow color and grow close to the Escondido River in Nicaragua. Despite its bright color, it is small and contains very little juice.
Femminello St. Teresa Lemons
These lemons are acidic and have a very tart taste. Nearly three-fourths of the lemons produced in Italy are the Femminello variety. It is also one of the oldest varieties of lemons in Italy.
These lemons are similar to the Eureka lemons, and they came from Genoa, Italy, even though today they are thriving in California.
The Interdonato lemons originate from Turkey and Italy, and they are often one of the earliest lemons to bloom each season. With a mildly bitter taste, these lemons have very little juice.
Very popular in South Asia, the Jhambiri lemons have extremely sour pulp. The lemons are bright-yellow in color and have rough skin.
These lemons are believed to have originated in Italy, mostly because they are so similar to both the Eureka and the Femminello lemons. They are a variety that grows in large numbers in Turkey.
These lemons come from Turkey and are actually stored in caves.
Similar to the Eureka and the Genoa lemons, the Lapithkiotiki is the primary lemon found in Cypress.
Contrary to its name, Lemonade lemons taste like grapefruit and have a skin that is pale-yellow in color.
Nepali Oblong Lemons
With medium acidity, the Nepali Oblong lemons look like citron and are a very juicy type of lemon. They are grown commercially in India.
Although its fruit is small and yellow and looks like other types of lemons, Otaheite lemons are often called a separate species. They are used mostly as a decorative indoor plant.
With a slight lime taste, this type of lemon is pale in color and very juicy. It is also a mixture of the Genoa lemon and the Mexican lime.
Pink Lemonade Lemons
This is a medium-sized lemon that is tart and has a color of tinged pink. It also develops stripes on its rind right before it matures.
These lemons are quite large and often used to make lemon juice and lemon pies. They are considered to be novelties.
Variegated Pink Lemons
Variegated pink lemons start out as green and striped fruit, and. as they mature, they turn a deep-yellow color and have pink flesh. If the trees are planted outdoors, they can get as high as 15 feet, and they grow white blooms that are very fragrant.
Villafranca lemons were once Florida’s most common and most popular type of lemon.
These lemons originated in Italy and are small and round in shape. The Volkamer lemons are low in acid, and most experts believe they are a cross between a lemon and some type of sour orange.
Yen Ben Lemons
These lemons are very thin-skinned and smooth. The trees can grow to 10 feet or more in height, and they usually produce fruit twice a year – in the Fall and in Winter.
Characteristics of Lemons – What to Look for When Buying Lemons
Some people have a preference when it comes to where their lemons are grown. This can also affect their overall taste, which is likely the main reason for their preference. Eureka lemons, for example, are grown commercially and can be found in grocery stores all over the place, yet Lisbon lemons are often found only in Florida at various local produce stands. Meyer lemons are usually home-grown in places such as California, while limettas are common in home gardens in various areas, including the Mediterranean, the United States, and India.
Seeds: Seed versus Seedless
This is one characteristic that is irrelevant to most people, but lemons can come with or without seeds. For example, Lisbon lemons have no seeds, while the Eureka lemons do.
The color of a lemon’s skin can tell you a lot about what type it is. Meyer lemons have an orangish look, while most other types of lemons are a bright shade of yellow. If you are looking for a particular characteristic when searching for the perfect lemon, you may have to rely on other aspects instead of skin color, because most lemons are roughly the same color.
Taste: Sweet versus Sour
Although many people are unaware of this, lemons can be sweet or sour in taste. Most commercially grown lemons are sour, or acidic because most sweet varieties are found in home gardens. However, the limetta and Meyer lemons are very sweet and are actually hybrids.
The limetta is a cross between a lemon and Mexican lime, while Meyer lemons are a mixture of a lemon and an orange. The more sour the taste is, the more likely you have purchased a Eureka or Lisbon lemon, and in some cases, you have to slice the lemon open and sample the juice itself to know which lemon you have in your possession.
The Eureka lemon has a thick skin that is pitted and has a lot of very small holes in it. Eureka lemons are very juicy and they are usually grown in large quantities because they are popular for commercial use. Lisbon lemons have skin that is much smoother and tapers off to a point at the end, but the chances are very good that if you bought your fruit at a regular grocery store, it is a Eureka lemon. Eureka lemons are simply more common in grocery stores.
Benefits Associated with Eating Lemons
It Can Improve Your Circulation
Vitamin P, yes, there is such a vitamin, is found in lemons, and this vitamin strengthens the blood vessels and allows your circulatory system to run more efficiently.
No Need for a Laxative
Because lemons keep you regular, you won’t need a laxative quite as often. This is because a good dose of lemon juice stimulates the liver to produce more bile, which keeps everything operating efficiently day after day.
It Has Certain Medicinal Properties
Lemons are both antibacterial and antiviral, mainly because they have a low pH level which breaks down the cell membrane of several strains of harmful bacteria. A few of the results thought to be provided by the regular intake of lemons and lemon water include:
- A decrease in your stress level
- A great all-natural cleanser for your home
- The decrease in cholesterol levels
- Great for a probiotic effect, since it feeds your gut’s healthy bacteria
- Improved overall cardiovascular health
- Increase in the absorption of iron
- Lower blood pressure
- Lower risk of heart attack and stroke
- Prevention of anemia
Good for Your Immune System
Let’s face it, almost everyone’s immune system could use a little boost now and then, and this is one of the things lemons do best. Because of lemons’ high doses of Vitamin C, they can help with everything from neutralizing free radicals to speeding up your recovery from a cold or other illness.
A Good Source of B Vitamins
The inclusion of B-complex vitamins in your diet is important for many reasons, mostly because these are vitamins that the body doesn’t produce on its own.
Giving You More Energy
Lemons give you additional energy because they stimulate brain activity. If you make up a large glass of water and squeeze some lemon juice in it first thing in the morning, then drink it throughout the day, this is a great way to stay active all day long.
It is Great for Bad Breath
No one likes hearing they have bad breath, and lemons are great as an oral cleanser, which makes your breath smell better instantly.
They are Very Nutritional
Lemons are made up mostly of water and a few carbohydrates, the latter being only around 10%. There is very little fat or protein in lemons, and they are only about 20 calories per fruit. In addition to Vitamin C, lemons also contain potassium, which is good for your cardiovascular system, and Vitamin B6, which readily converts food into energy.
Get Out of Your Acidic State
The body can be acidic or alkaline, the latter of which is healthier for you. Lemons help alkalize your body because once it’s absorbed by your body, it is no longer acidic. If you’re not sure what the ratio is between acid and alkaline in your body right now, you can go to any drug store and buy a kit that will test your urine and let you know for sure.
A Great Detoxifier
If you’re wanting to rid your body of certain toxins, simply drink some lemon juice. The high content of potassium in lemons can eliminate symptoms such as headaches, constipation, and even loss of appetite, among others. Lemons do this by getting rid of certain toxins, such as uric acid, found in the body.
Be Stone-Free in No Time
If you are suffering from kidney stones or gallbladder stones, treat yourself to some lemons because they can dissolve these and even calcium deposits due to the citric acid found in them.
Brain Disorders Can Be Greatly Relieved
If you know someone who has a brain disorder, such as Parkinson’s, try giving them lemon peel. The nutrients in the peel of lemon have been found to reduce or even eliminate some of these illnesses.
Many Anti-Cancer Properties
There are a total of 22 properties found in lemons that have been proven to halt the growth of tumors in many studies, and lemons also stop cell division in cancer cells.
Helping You See Better
Lemons also contain rutin, which has been found to help in various eye disorders, including diabetic retinopathy and others, by greatly reducing the symptoms of these illnesses.
Help with Breathing Problems
Lemons can even help you breathe much better, so when you’re hiking in the mountains or taking a mountain-climbing adventure, don’t forget to drink lots of lemon juice while you’re doing so.