At Kilby, we pride ourselves in having the best selection of citrus trees. A staple in most Melbourne courtyards and gardens, citrus are the trees that keep on giving.
Here are our favourites:
Lisbon lemon is a beloved tree in Australia and Melbourne. This zesty evergreen tree grows to 8m high by 4m wide. Fragrant white flowers give way to thin-skinned, classically sour juicy fruits annually; with hardly any seeds. Lisbon lemon is among the most commonly-planted lemon trees in Australia as they are suited to full sun to part shade and are dry hardy once established. Lisbon lemon does have thorns so be careful when pruning. A hard prune in winter is always advised. Like any citrus, look out for signs of gull wasp. Lisbon lemon is a great variety for inland gardens as they are more heat tolerant.
A lovely compact variety of lemon, Meyer grows to 4m high by 3m wide. This tree features beautiful lime green foliage with small, round, rich yellow fruits that ripen in Autumn. Meyer lemon is a cross between a Lemon and an orange, and the resulting fruit is juicy and sweeter than most lemons. They are perfect for pots and can withstand drier conditions once established. Meyer lemon is great for cooler climates, making it the preferred lemon for Melbourne temperatures.
Eureka Lemon trees are a staple in the Melbourne landscape. This lush, small evergreen tree is as ornamental as they are productive. Eureka lemon grows to 4m tall by 3m wide. This tree produces classic large, sour fruits that are nice and juicy. This variety is great for containers and can withstand dry conditions once established. Eureka lemon produces fruit throughout the year.
Imperial mandarin is such a delicious fruit that is loved by everyone. This popular variety produces an abundance of easy to peel fruits in late Autumn, making it a favourite winter fruit. Imperial mandarin grows to around 3m by 3m and has a dark luscious foliage, making it a great small feature tree all year around. These are fantastic for pots or in the garden in full sun to part shade.
Ruby Grapefruit are a medium size tree that grow to around 4m high by 4 m wide. These trees are great for hedging or screening as well as shade trees as they are quite dense and bushy. Not recommended for pots or containers, these fabulous trees produce medium sized fruit with red flesh underneath the yellow skin. The fruit is sweeter than your average grapefruit, but still tangy and scrumptious. Leaving the fruit on the tree to ripen may produce sweeter fruit.
Tahitian lime is a bright green luscious tree that is quintessential for a cook’s garden. Growing to a height of 3m by 3m wide. their bright white waxy flowers fill the garden with perfume in summer. Small round lime fruits form and ripen in late autumn making them a favourite for summer drinks. The fruits are juice heavy and delicious in any cocktail or meal. Tahitian lime makes an excellent container plant and can grow in full sun to part shade.
Kaffir Limes are mostly used for their leaves rather than their fruit. The leaves are very peculiar as they look like two leaves merged at the tip of each other. The leaves are widely used in Asian cuisines as they provide distinct flavour to many dishes.
This variety gets to around 1.5 m tall and is suitable for containers. The fruit are small and bumpy but are produce almost no juice, so they are rarely used. Kaffir limes prefer full sun in moist, well-drained soil and somewhat humid conditions during the growing season.
This large-growing citrus tree is sure to stand out in the landscape. Growing to 7m by 7m, Citrus x sinensis ‘Blood Orange’ is an evergreen and hardy to dry conditions once established. This tree is quite productive, with heavily perfumed flowers appearing in summer with fruit following in Autumn. A fabulous tree for sun and happy in containers.
Washington Navel orange is a seedless and delicious orange fruit. The tree is small and evergreen and looks great in every garden. Growing to a height of 4m and 3m in width, the fragrant flowers make another amazing feature. The fruit is named for its distinct navel found inside. This variety is a great option for growing in pots and can tolerate sun or part shade.
Cumquat trees are some of the best to grow in containers. They are a compact tree that produces small fruits packed with flavour. A tree that is loved by many chefs!
There are a few varieties out there, of which we sell the Green cumquat – these are best to eat fresh and it is the sweetest variety. You can even eat them with the skin on. In perfect conditions they grow around 3-4m tall.
Tangelos are a beautiful tree growing to around 3m high to 2 m wide. The leaves are a zesty green with deep orange fruits. The fruits taste like a mix between Mandarin, Orange and Grapefruit. This is another variety this is suited to container growing.
Finger limes are the only Australian native citrus. This iconic tree produces long, finger-shaped fruit with thin skins. The caviar-like beads of fruit are a favorite in fine dining and are especially delicious when paired with seafood. These trees prefer a position guarded from the hot sun as the fruit may easily burn.