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Citrus ID






Brown Marsh, Cudebeck, Hooghart, Marsh Jibarito, Marsh Seedless, Wautelet, White Marsh, Whitney Marsh, Whitney, Zinbaa Rose (sec. Cottin 2002)

Cultivar or taxon


Citrus x aurantium L., pro sp. [Grapefruit Group] (sensu Mabberley 1997, Bayer et al. 2009); Citrus paradisi Macfad. (sensu Swingle and Reece 1967; sensu Tanaka sec. Cottin 2002)



Hodgson (1967) noted that:

"The first commercially seedless grapefruit (with few or no seeds), later named Marsh, became available in 1889 and because of that highly desirable characteristic within a few decades attained dominance in Florida and became the leading grapefruit variety of the world, a status it has retained ever since. More recently, at least two other seedless varieties of the common grapefruit type have been found, namely Davis in Florida and Cecily in South Africa, neither of which has attained much commercial importance"

"According to Webber (1943), Marsh apparently originated as a chance seedling planted about 1860 on a farm near Lakeland, Florida. Its commercial value as a seedless variety was not recognized until 1886, however, when it was brought to the attention of E. H. Tison of the Lakeland Nursery Company, who immediately arranged for its propagation and introduced it soon thereafter as a choice seedless variety. A few years later it was given its present name by C. M. Marsh, who had acquired the Lakeland Nursery. According to Mr. Tison, the owner of the farm on which the parent tree occurred insisted that it developed as a root sprout from an old seedling tree which produced seedy fruit. While this is possible, it seems highly improbable.

Primarily because of its comparative seedlessness, within a few years after its introduction Marsh became the variety most planted in Florida and virtually the only variety planted elsewhere. It is still by far the leading variety and is worldwide in its distribution."

The Chiefland Budwood Facility (2010) provided the following notes on the cultivar (clone F-57-4): "Originated from closed pollinations by Dr. Mort Cohen selections from the UF campus grove near Century Tower.... Planted in DPI Foundation Grove in 1960 (SPB-43)."

The Chiefland Budwood Facility (2010) provided the following notes on the cultivar (clone F-58-6): "Originated from pollinations made by Dr. Mort Cohen in 1955. Selections from the UF Horticulture Grounds Grove on Archer Road....Planted in DPI Foundation Grove in 1960 (SPB-43)."



Crown compact or dense, not weeping. First-year twig surface pubescent; second- or third-year twig surface striate; thorns absent or not persistent; prickles absent or not persistent. Petiole pubescent, length short, wings medium, adjoining the blade. Leaflets one, margin bluntly toothed, shade leaflet blades weakly conduplicate, sun leaflet blades weakly conduplicate. Scent leaflets sweetly orange-like. Fruit as broad as long or longer than broad; rind green-yellow (6), yellow (7-10), or yellow-orange (11); rind texture slightly rough (4-5); firmness leathery; navel absent; flesh yellow; taste grapefruit-like.


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


"Fruit medium in size, oblate to spherical; areole ring indistinct or lacking; seeds few or none. Color pale to light yellow at maturity. Rind medium-thin, tough; surface very smooth and even. Flesh buff-colored; tender, very juicy; flavor good though not so pronounced as in some seedy varieties. Holds unusually well on the tree and ships and stores well. The latest-maturing of all commercial varieties.


Tree vigorous, spreading, large, and productive. Because of high heat requirements, commercially restricted to very hot climates."



Hodgson (1967) additionally noted that:

"Of common grapefruit varieties, only Marsh and Duncan are currently being planted on an important commercial scale, the former in all parts of the world where grapefruit is grown and the latter principally in Florida and primarily for processing."

"Marsh is of unusual horticultural interest not only because it was the first seedless grapefruit variety discovered but also because the pigmented varieties currently of greatest commercial importance trace back to it. Thus, Thompson (Pink Marsh) originated as a limb sport of Marsh and Redblush (Ruby) or Red Marsh occurred as a bud mutation of Thompson. On the other hand, Marsh has also given rise to inferior bud variations, frequently characterized by a reversion to seediness.

Other seedless varieties of more recent origin, virtually indistinguishable from Marsh, include Cecily of South Africa and Davis.

Nucellar clonal budlines are currently of importance in Texas, Arizona and California, principal among which are Frost, CES (Citrus Experiment Station, Riverside, California), and USDA (U.S. Date and Citrus Station, Indio, California). Reed, a seedling that originated in the dooryard of J. F. Reed of Taft, California, is one of the most recent selections to receive attention."

The Chiefland Budwood Facility (2010) provided the following notes on the cultivar (clone F-57-4): "Vigorous trees and excellent producers....Fruit size and shape typical of the variety."



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.

Chiefland Budwood Facility. 2010. 2010 Annual report July 1, 2009 - June 30, 2010. Bureau of Citrus Budwood Registration, Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services, Winter Haven.

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.

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.

Webber, H.J. 1943. Cultivated varieties of citrus. In: Webber, H.J. and L.D. Batchelor (eds.). The Citrus industry. I: 475-668. University of California Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles.



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Citrus ID Edition 2
October, 2011