University of California

Chandler—an early-ripening hybrid pummelo derived from a low-acid parent


James W. Cameron
Robert K. Soost

Authors Affiliations

James W. Cameron was Geneticist in the Agricultural Experiment Station, Riverside; Robert K. Soost was Associate Geneticist in the Agricultural Experiment Station, Riverside.

Publication Information

Hilgardia 30(12):359-364. DOI:10.3733/hilg.v30n12p359. January 1961.

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Abstract does not appear. First page follows.

The pummelo (Citrus grandis Osbeck) is a citrus species which is widely grown and used as a fresh fruit in southeast Asia, but is little known in the United States. Many varieties exist, partly because pummelos produce only sexual progeny and each new seedling is likely to be somewhat different from the next.

Pummelos and pummelo culture have been described by (Wester (1917))4 in the Philippine Islands, (Reinking and Groff (1921)) and (Groff (1927), (1930) in Thailand, and (Ochse (1931)) in the Dutch East Indies. (Reasoner (1888)) discussed some varieties of pummelo growing in Florida. (Swingle (1943)) and (Webber (1943)) have discussed the botany and some of the cultivated varieties of the pummelo.

Among citrus fruits, the grapefruit is the closest relative of the pummelo. The two are similar in many respects, but the pummelo fruit is larger and has firmer flesh. In most varieties, it also has a considerably thicker rind. It often lacks the bitterness characteristic of grapefruit, although some pummelo varieties have highly unpleasant flavors. At Riverside, pummelos ripen earlier than grapefruit. In the Orient, the pummelo flesh apparently develops greater firmness than in California, and the juice vesicles can be eaten out of hand, even after removal of the segment membranes.

At the University of California Citrus Experiment Station, Riverside, a collection of some fifty pummelo varieties, mostly obtained through the United States Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Plant Introduction, has been maintained since about 1932. Under Riverside climatic conditions, most of these varieties have not been particularly promising. A few become good-flavored by March or April, some eleven months after flowering, but nearly all show severe fruit drop by that time, particularly during periods of high winds, which usually occur one or more times during the winter season. All the varieties have contained many seeds in the mixed plantings at the station, although in southeast Asia, fruits with few seeds are produced under some conditions.

In the United States, the seediness and firmness of the pummelo reduce its suitability for eating by halves with a spoon, as grapefruit are eaten. Likewise, it is not suitable for juicing. It serves best as a specialty fruit, to be eaten by slices out of hand, in salads, or fruit cups. By cutting pie-shaped or tangential sections, one can largely avoid the seeds and core. Unlike most

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Cameron J, Soost R. 1961. Chandler—an early-ripening hybrid pummelo derived from a low-acid parent. Hilgardia 30(12):359-364. DOI:10.3733/hilg.v30n12p359
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