The Bitter Orange is a vigorous tree that can reach up to 20 meters in height. It has a dense growth habit, its branches are spiny and its foliage is of a beautiful green. This tree blooms in Spring, its flowers can also grow in bunches and they have an ivory colour, like the flowers of the Sweet Orange. Its fruits are its distinctive feature: they are round-shaped, with small hollows at its poles, and they have a bright-orange wrinkled peel.
USES AND FUN FACTS
The Bitter Orange pulp has a light colour and a bitter taste, and it is used to make marmalades or, in some cases, to prepare digestive liqueurs.
This tree is reproducible by seed, and it is often used as a rootstock (“Melangolo”) for the Citrus variety, because of its good resistance to cold weather. Although being widely used as a rootstock, however, plants that are grafted into the Bitter Orange are less resistant to certain pathogens, especially to the root rot.