Tucker, David H. Agriculture Research and Education Center, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.
Last reviewed:May 2021
- Plant structure
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
An evergreen tree (Citrus paradisi) and its edible citrus fruit. Grapefruit (Citrus paradisi) is a subtropical evergreen tree belonging to the order Sapindales. It has a well-rounded top and is cultivated for its large and globose citrus fruit. The edible fruit is characterized by a yellow rind and white, pink, or red pulp. The grapefruit apparently arose as a hybrid of shaddock or pomelo (pummelo) [C. maxima] and sweet orange (C. sinensis) in the West Indies. Because of the grapefruit's hybrid origin, the taxonomic designation is often written as Citrus × paradisi. Its first recorded mention occurred in Barbados in 1750, and the first use of the term grapefruit occurred in Jamaica in 1814. Grapefruit was introduced into Florida in the 1820s. The term grapefruit was derived from the tendency of the grapefruit tree to produce large clusters of fruit (see illustration) in a manner similar to that observed with grape vines. See also: Evergreen plants; Fruit; Fruit, tree; Horticultural crops; Sapindales
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