The Lime (Citrus medica acida) is most frequently grown from seed, hence the varieties are numerous and variable. This is specially true of the Cuban or West Indian type, which is also grown in lower Florida and on some of the Keys. In addition there are a few varieties propagated by budding or grafting. Budding on Citrus trifoliata has resulted in increasing the hardiness of these varieties. In nearly frostless sections, such as parts of Mexico and the West Indies, it is planted in hedge form. As it is very thorny and impenetrable, these hedges answer the double purpose of a defensive hedge and bearing heavy crops of fruit. The skin is thin and the juice pure-flavored and very acid; it is preferred in tropical regions to the lemon for about all uses. But it does not keep like the lemon, hence is not commercial to the same extent. The fruit is largely used in the manufacture of citric acid in lower Florida, the West Indies, and in British India. The fruits are shipped from flower Florida and the West Indies in immense quantity to the Atlantic coast cities during summer and autumn, but they are rarely seen in the interior cities.

Varieties Of The Lime

French (False Lemon)

As large as a medium-sized orange, with thick skin that is warty and uneven, with swelling at apex. Flesh pleasantly acid, and the segments divide as readily as the Tangerine oranges. A very vigorous variety used for stocks for the orange. The Washington Navel in Florida bears far more freely on this stock than any other.


Larger than Navel orange; oval, yellow; quality good. Grown mainly in lower California, but it does well in lower Florida.


Of lemon size, oval, with point at apex; color light yellow; quality good. Extensively grown in lower Florida.

Rangpur (Mandarin Lime)

Oblate; much like a Mandarin orange; color orange and red; quality best. This is most extensively used in lower Florida for summer drinks and even for dessert use. In the coast cities it usually sells much higher than lemons.


Larger than the commercial lemon; oval; light yellow; quality best. A leading commercial variety propagated mainly by budding.


Very large, often as large as the Pomelo; oblong; yellow; quality rather coarse and low. Only grown for kitchen use.

West Indian

Small, oval; skin thin, smooth; juice abundant, highly aromatic, rich, acid, and pleasant, but somewhat variable as grown from seed. Select varieties are propagated by budding in lower Florida.