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Zones 10-11
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Zones 10-11

Buddha's Hand Citron Tree

Citrus medica var. sarcodactylis

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Buddha's Hand Citron Tree

Citrus medica var. sarcodactylis

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Special Features
Zone Map
Spring Color

Botanical Name

Citrus medica var. sarcodactylis

Outdoor Growing zone


Mature Height


Mature Width


Sun needs

Full Sun

The Buddha’s Hand Citron Tree is something very special. It has extraordinary large yellow fruits, with long ‘fingers’, that look like a human hand. Each one is unique in form, with the ‘fingers’ twisting in different directions depending on where the young fruit develops on the tree. The flowers are white, and have the rich fragrance of orange-blossom. The glossy evergreen leaves smell of lemons, because it is an ancestor of the lemon tree. Flowers and fruits are often on the tree at the same time, as this tree can flower several times in a year. It grows outdoors in zones 10 and 11 only, but it can easily be grown in a large pot, if you have a brightly-lit, cool place to keep it during the winter months. The tree will grow between 6 and 15 feet tall, staying smaller in a pot, and growing larger in the open ground. Not only are the fruits unique in appearance, but with their rich citrus-flavored thick rind, they can be used in the kitchen for baking and marmalades, as well as to flavor alcohol for drinks.

  • Unique and remarkable fruit like a large yellow hand
  • Valuable in the kitchen too
  • Fragrant white blossoms
  • Easily grown in a pot with some winter protection
  • Attractive, glossy-leaved shrub or small tree

Grow the Buddha’s Hand Citron in a sunny spot outdoors if you live in a warm-enough area. Otherwise, grow it in a large pot, keeping it outdoors in a warm, sheltered place in full sun. When the night temperatures fall to 40 or 45 degrees, bring the pot indoors to a bright, but cool place. It will continue to grow, ripen its fruits and even flower indoors. Place it back outside once warmer weather returns. This tree is easy to grow, only one is needed to create fruits, and it is usually not bothered by pests or diseases. Because of its unique form, this special fruit is used in Buddhist religious ceremonies.

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