This tool is part of the Citrus Resource

Citrus ID







Cultivar or taxon


Feronia Corrêa (sec. Swingle and Reece 1967; Bayer et al. 2009; sensu Tanaka sec. Cottin 2002)



Crown open, not weeping. First-year twig surface pubescent; second- or third-year twig surface mottled; thorns straight; prickles absent or not persistent. Petiole pubescent, length short; wings absent. Leaflets five to seven or greater than seven, margin entire or bluntly toothed, rachis wings absent, shade leaflet blades weakly conduplicate, sun leaflet blades weakly conduplicate. Scent of crushed leaflets somewhat to strongly malodorous. Fruit as broad as long or longer than broad; rind black, red, or pink; rind texture slightly rough (4-5); firmness woody; navel absent; flesh red/purplish-tinged.

Swingle and Reece (1967) provided the following additional notes on the genus:

"Feronia and Feroniella, spiny trees with pinnate leaves and small leaflets, have ovaries in which the locules (four to six) coalesce at an early stage of development into a single cavity with numerous ovules borne on the walls (parietal placentae), a character unique in the whole plant family Rutaceae."

"Flowers in loose panicles, hermaphrodite, by abortion polygamous; calyx small, 5-toothed, caducous; petals 5, rarely 4-6, spreading, oblong or ovate-lanceolate, imbricate in the bud; stamens 10-12; filaments dilated, bound together by densely woolly pubescence at the base, subulate at the apex; anthers large, linear-oblong, attached at the base, disk short; ovary globose, incompletely 4-6-locular, then 1-locular (with 4-6 parietal placentae), merging into a short, thick, attenuate style; stigma oblong-fusiform; ovules at the internal angles of the incomplete ovary walls, very numerous, in several series; fruit large, globose, having a woody shell, with a single cavity, with numerous parietal placentae, bearing numerous seeds surrounded by a gum-like pulp; seeds oblong, compressed, testa thin, brown, hairy; cotyledons thick, fleshy, radicle pointing away from the hilum. A medium-sized spiny tree with hard wood. Spines short, straight, axillary. Twigs and leaves densely covered with minute pubescence when very young, soon glabrous. Leaves deciduous (in tropical climates often persistent), odd-pinnate, leaflets opposite, subsessile, entire or slightly crenulate, pellucid-punctate; petiole and rachis simple or winged.

This genus deviates widely from all the other genera of the orange subfamily except the closely allied Feroniella in having an ovary that in its earliest stages of development shows four to six locules which soon fuse into a single locule with parietal placentae with very numerous ovules. From Feroniella, to which it is obviously closely related, it differs in having only twice as many stamens as petals (instead of four times as many), stamens without basal appendages, hairy seeds, and a fruit with a woody shell not composed of wedge-shaped radial elements. The leaves of Feronia, as well as those of Feroniella, are odd-pinnate with paired opposite leaflets on a rachis that is composed of segments articulated at each leaf pair. This character is found only in the tribe Citreae and there only in the pinnate-leaved species. The fact that Citrus can be grafted on Feronia is an indication of its not too remote relationship to the True Citrus Fruit Trees."



Swingle and Reece (1967) additionally noted that:

"In 1800 Corrêa da Serra established the genus Feronia for the wood apple, and since that date all botanists have so used it. On the other hand, Limonia has become a true nomen ambiguum, "permanent source of confusion or error," as it has been applied to plants belonging to at least thirteen very diverse genera, namely, Micromelum, Glycosmis, Murraya, Triphasia, Pamburus, Luvunga, Paramignya, Severinia, Pleiospermium, Hesperethusa, Citropsis, Atalantia, and Swinglea, representing both tribes and five of the six subtribes which constitute the subfamily Aurantioideae!"



Bayer, R.J., D.J. Mabberley, C. Morton, C.H. Miller, I.K. Sharma, B.E. Pfeil, S. Rich, R. Hitchcock, and S. Sykes. 2009. A molecular phylogeny of the orange subfamily (Rutaceae: Aurantioideae) using nine cpDNA sequences. American Journal of Botany 96: 668–685.

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

Swingle, W.T. and P.C. Reece. 1967. The botany of Citrus and its wild relatives. In: Reuther, W., H.J. Webber, and L.D. Batchelor (eds.). The Citrus industry. Ed. 2. Vol. I. University of California, Riverside.



Search for this cultivar in NCBI Entrez or NCBI Nucleotide


Citrus ID Edition 2
October, 2011