Friday, February 4, 2011

Citrus Mystery

Mr. Hunter's family has an orange tree that seems to be growing two different kinds of citrus fruit -- without any grafting! 

A tree guy (as in, a man hired to trim trees) told us that both kinds of fruits were oranges.  We sliced open one of the peculiar citrus giants to see if it tasted like an orange.  Nope.  And it didn't taste like a grapefruit either.  Mysterious...

Mr. Hunter poses with one of the mutant oranges and a regular, yummy orange.

 The oranges and "oranges" on their tree.

They seem to share the same trunk, though it splits into two big trunks close to the ground.

What's the deal?


  1. The tasty variety was grafted to rootstock of the other variety, which presumably possesses some strength as rootstock lacking in the tasty orange. Later, a bud below the graft produced a shoot that grew alongside the tasty variety's stem, so now you have one trunk bearing the (grafted) tasty oranges, and another fulfilling the fruity destiny of the rootstock.
    -Bob Deloria

  2. Ohhh, thanks, Bob! That makes perfect sense...