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Citrus ID






Algerian, Clementina Fina, Del Terreno, Fina, Sin Hueso, Sodea, SRA (sec. Cottin 2002)

Cultivar or taxon


Citrus reticulata Blanco [Clementine Group] (sensu Mabberley 1997); Citrus reticulata Blanco (sensu Swingle and Reece 1967); Citrus clementina hort. ex Tanaka (sensu Hodgson 1967; sensu Tanaka sec. Cottin 2002)



Hodgson (1967) provided the following information on the cultivar under Clementine: According to Trabut (1902a, 1902b, 1926) this highly important North African variety originated as an accidental hybrid in a planting of mandarin seedlings, presumably of the common or Mediterranean mandarin, made by Father Clement Rodier in the garden of the orphanage of the Péres du Saint-Esprit at Misserghin, a small village near Oran, Algeria. It was one of several aberrant plants Trabut noted and was selected by him and named Clementine by the Horticultural Society of Algiers on his recommendation (Chapot, 1963a). It was Trabut's conclusion that the seed parent was the Mediterranean mandarin and the pollen parent a willow-leafed ornamental variety of C. aurantium known as Granito. Both Webber (1943, p. 558) and Tanaka (1954) have expressed doubt concerning the validity of this conclusion. More recently, Chapot (1963a), the distinguished French authority in North Africa, has refuted it with convincing evidence. It is his conclusion that Clementine is of Oriental origin, probably Chinese, and that it is indistinguishable from and probably identical to the Canton mandarin described by Trabut (1926), who also remarked on the similarities between the two. If this Canton mandarin was authentic, these resemblances have apparently escaped the notice of Tanaka (1954), for he has given the species designation clementina to this mandarin.



Crown compact or dense, not weeping. First-year twig surface glabrous; second- or third-year twig surface striate; thorns absent or not persistent; prickles absent or not persistent. Petiole glabrous, length short; wings absent, if present, narrow, adjoining the blade. Leaflets one, margin bluntly toothed, shade leaflet blades weakly conduplicate, sun leaflet blades weakly or strongly conduplicate. Scent of crushed leaflets mandarin-like. Fruit as broad as long or longer than broad; rind yellow-orange (11), orange (12), or red-orange (13); rind texture slightly rough (4-5) or medium rough (6-7); firmness leathery; navel absent; flesh orange; taste acidic-sweet.

Hodgson (1967) provided the following additional information on the cultivar under the synonymous Clementine: "Tree medium in vigor and size, spreading and round-topped; branchlets fine-stemmed, willowy, and nearly thornless; foliage dense. Leaves highly variable in size, narrowly lanceolate in form, and somewhat resembling the Mediterranean or Willowleaf mandarin. In most locations, regular and satisfactory bearing is assured only by the provision of cross-pollination. Tree strongly cold-resistant."



Chapot, H. and R. Huet. 1963. L'orange salustiana. Al Awamia [Rabat] 6: 73–93.

Cottin, R. 2002. Citrus of the World: A citrus directory. Version 2.0. France: SRA INRA-CIRAD.

Hodgson, R.W. 1967. Horticultural varieties of Citrus. In: Reuther, W., H.J. Webber, and L.D. Batchelor (eds.). The Citrus industry, rev. University of California Press.

Mabberley, D.J. 1997. A classification for edible Citrus (Rutaceae). Telopea 7: 167–172.

Tanaka, T. 1954. Species problem in Citrus (Revisio aurantiacearum IX). Japanese Society for Promotion of Science, Ueno. 152 pp.

Trabut, L. 1902a. Une nouvelle tangerine, La Clementine. Gouvernement General del'Algerie. Direction de l' Agriculture. Informations Agricoles - Bulletin 35: 21–35.

Trabut, L. 1902b. L'hybridation des Citrus: une nouvelle tangerine, La Clementine. Revue Horticole [Paris] 74: 232–234.

Trabut, L. 1926. La Clementine, les hybrides du Citrus nobilis. Direction de l' Agriculture. Informations Agricoles - Bulletin 67.

Webber, H.J. and W.T. Swingle. 1905. New citrus creations of the Department of Agriculture. U.S. Department of Agriculture Yearbook 1904: 221–240.



Search for this cultivar in NCBI Entrez

Additional information on this cultivar at University of California: Riverside Citrus Variety Collection (Algerian) (2 (Clementina Fina), 3 (SRA 63), 4 (SRA 92))


Citrus ID Edition 2
October, 2011