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Citrus maxima

Citrus maxima, Ormideia, Cyprus, Photo:  Augusta Stylianou Artist

Cladus: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Divisio: Magnoliophyta
Classis: Magnoliopsida
Ordo: Sapindales
Familia: Rutaceae
Subfamilia: Citroideae
Tribus: Citreae
Genus: Citrus
Species: Citrus maxima


Citrus maxima (Burm.) Merr.

Vernacular name
Ελληνικά: Πόμελο
Italiano: Pompelmo
Русский: Помело
Suomi: Pomelo
Türkçe: Şatok
Українська: Помело

Citrus maxima, Ormideia, Cyprus, Photo:  Augusta Stylianou Artist


* An Interpretation of Rumphius's Herbarium Amboinense 296. 1917
* USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Germplasm Resources Information Network - (GRIN) [Data from 07-Oct-06]. [1]


The pomelo (Citrus maxima or Citrus grandis) is a citrus fruit native to South East Asia. It is usually pale green to yellow when ripe, with sweet white (or, more rarely, pink or red) flesh and very thick pudgy rind. It is the largest citrus fruit, 15–25 cm in diameter,[1] and usually weighing 1–2 kg. Other spellings for pomelo include pummelo, and pommelo, and other names include Chinese grapefruit, jabong, lusho fruit, pompelmous,[2] Papanas, and shaddock.[3]

Cultivation and uses

The pomelo tastes like a sweet, mild grapefruit, though the typical pomelo is much larger in size than the grapefruit. It has very little, or none, of the common grapefruit's bitterness, but the enveloping membranous material around the segments is bitter, considered inedible, and thus usually discarded. The peel is sometimes used to make marmalade, or candied, then (sometimes) dipped in chocolate. The peel of the pomelo is also used in Chinese cooking. In general, citrus peel is often used in southern Chinese cuisine for flavouring, especially in sweet soup desserts.

The Chandler is a Californian variety of pomelo, with a smoother skin than many other varieties. An individual Chandler fruit can reach the weight of one kilogram.

The tangelo is a hybrid between the pomelo and the tangerine. It has a thicker skin than a tangerine and is less sweet. It has been suggested that the orange is also a hybrid of the two fruits.

The pomelo is native to South-East Asia[4] and is known there under a wide variety of names. In Vietnam, two particularly well known varieties are cultivated; one called bưởi Năm Roi in the Trà Ôn district of Vinh Long Province of the Mekong Delta region, and one called bưởi da xanh in Ben Tre Province.

In the Philippines, the fruit is known as the suhâ, or lukban, and is eaten as a dessert or snack. The pomelo, cut into wedges, is dipped in salt before it is eaten. Pomelo juices and pomelo-flavored juice drink mixes are also common.

In Thailand, the fruit is called som-oh (ส้มโอ), and is eaten raw, usually dipped into a salt, sugar and chili pepper mixture.

In Malay and Indonesian, the pomelo is known as limau/jeruk bali ("Balinese lime/orange") after the island of Bali. The town of Tambun in Perak, Malaysia is famous for pomelos. There are two varieties: a sweet kind, which has white flesh, and a sour kind, which has pinkish flesh and is more likely to be used as an altar decoration than actually eaten. Pomelos are a must during the mid-autumn festival or mooncake festival; they are normally eaten fresh.

It is also known as the Sai-Seh ( Elephant Grapefruit) among the Kuki people and Zou tribes in Manipur and Chin States of Myanmar (Burma).

In Manipur, nobab is used as a major source of vitamin C. This fruit holds a high place in the culture and tradition of Manipur. Many religious rituals seem incomplete without this fruit. In Tamil Nadu, it is locally called as Gadarangai. In Chinese, the fruit is known as yòuzi (柚子), although the same Chinese characters can also be used for the yuzu, a different species. The Japanese refer to the pomelo as buntan ( 文旦?) or zabon ( 朱欒?), apparently both derived from the name of Cantonese captain 谢文旦, read Sha Buntan in Japanese, who is said to have introduced the cultivation of the fruit to Japan in the An'ei era (1772-1781).[5]

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Source: Wikispecies, Wikipedia: All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License