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Kumquat

Kumquat is a tropical, evergreen, citrus plant of the Rutov family, with unusual, bright fruits. 

Kumquat: botanical description

Kumquat is an evergreen, undersized (up to 3 meters in height) tree with a thin, gray-brown trunk and a rounded crown. The flattened, triangular branches are usually smooth, but may be covered with small, thin spines.
Glossy, leathery, thin leaves are arranged in a regular order. They have an elongated elliptical shape, a pronounced central vein, short winged petioles, a rounded base, a solid edge, and a sharp tip. The color of the leaves is usually light green with a beautiful pattern of dark green veins.

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During the flowering period, regular, small, axillary flowers appear on the kumquat singly (rarely 2-3 flowers in one brush). They consist of 5 oval, snow-white petals welded at the base and bright, yellow stamens.

After pollination, small (no more than an ordinary plum), oval fruits begin to form on the plant, with a thin, orange or golden yellow, smooth, edible, sweet skin, under which a juicy, orange, sweet and sour pulp is hidden. It tastes like tangerine, but has a more pronounced sourness. Seeds are large, kidney-shaped, greenish-white in color.

The root system is weak, superficial, with small, thin, very fragile roots

Kumquat: history and features of the name

Until the 12th century, kumquat was grown exclusively in the territory of the Middle Kingdom. The plant with ripe fruits was used to decorate the tables of the emperor and members of the nobility, so that they could independently pick the freshest fruits directly from the tree. What is noteworthy, until the 19th century, foreigners could only export from the country the fruits of the kumquat, but the export of the tree itself was strictly prohibited. This is primarily due to the weak root system of the plant and great difficulties in growing it from seed.
The kumquat was introduced to Europe thanks to the English scientist Robert Fortune. in 1846. It was he who made the first scientific description of the plant, and also attributed it to the genus Citrus. But Fortune left the plant's name in Chinese - "kum gvat", which translates as "golden orange".

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Kumquat: where it grows

The natural range of kumquat is located in South Asia. Nowadays, only a few natural plant species are found in the wild, which grow mainly in tropical forests in southern China.

In culture, kumquats are grown in the countries of the Northern Hemisphere with warm tropical and subtropical climates. The largest exporters of this fruit are Japan, China, Greece and the United States.

In our country, kumquat is grown mainly as a houseplant.

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Kumquat: application

Kumquat is a very beautiful tree with delicious, healthy fruits that can be eaten with the skin. Remarkably, the sweet peel of the kumquat is in perfect harmony with the sour pulp, and makes the taste of the fruit as harmonious as possible. The fruits of the plant are often used in cooking for the preparation of a variety of desserts, candied fruits, marmalade, jam and preserves.

In addition, kumquat is also used in indoor floriculture for landscaping and decorating living rooms, offices and conference rooms. This miniature tree looks especially impressive during flowering and fruiting, when dark foliage is practically hidden behind bright fruits.

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