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Citrus ID

 

Imperial Mandarin

 

Synonyms

 

Early Imperial, Improved (sec. Cottin 2002)

Cultivar or taxon

 

Citrus reticulata Blanco (sensu Hodgson 1967, Swingle and Reece 1967, Mabberley 1997, 2004; sensu Tanaka sec. Cottin 2002)

Origin

 

Hodgson (1967) noted that: "Imperial originated about 1890 at Emu Plains, some thirty miles west of Sydney, New South Wales, and is believed to be a chance hybrid of Mediterranean or Willowleaf, to which it bears considerable resemblance, and some other mandarin—possibly Emperor. Because of its early maturity, attractive appearance, and pleasant flavor, it commands a premium in the markets."

Description

 

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 medium; wings narrow, adjoining the blade. Leaflets one, margin bluntly toothed, shade leaflet blades flat or weakly conduplicate, sun leaflet blades flat or weakly conduplicate. Scent of crushed leaflets mandarin-like. Fruit broader than long; rind yellow (7-10), yellow-orange (11), or orange (12); rind texture slightly rough (4-5); firmness leathery; navel absent; flesh orange; taste acidic-sweet.

Hodgson (1967) provided the following additional notes on the cultivar:

"Fruit medium-small to medium, oblate to broadly obovate; short basal neck or low collar; apex depressed. Rind very thin, leathery, smooth and glossy, with slight adherence but no puffing until mature; color yellowish to pale orange at maturity. Segments 9 to 11, easily separable; axis medium and hollow. Flavor pleasantly subacid with attractive aroma. Comparatively few seeds. Very early in maturity (about like Wase satsuma). Loses quality if left on tree after maturity.

Tree vigorous, medium in size, upright, virtually thornless; leaves long, slender, and taper-pointed. Some tendency to alternate bearing."

References

 

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. http://lib.ucr.edu/agnic/webber/Vol1/Chapter4.html.

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

Mabberley, D.J. 2004. Citrus (Rutaceae): A review of recent advances in etymology, systematics and medical applications. Blumea 49: 481–498.

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. http://lib.ucr.edu/agnic/webber/Vol1/Chapter3.html.

Resources

 

Search for this cultivar in NCBI Entrez

 

Citrus ID Edition 2
October, 2011
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