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Citrus myrtifolia

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Title: Citrus myrtifolia  
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Subject: Citrus, Orangequat, Citrangequat, Cherry Orange, Citrus inodora
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Citrus myrtifolia

Myrtle-leaved orange tree
Chinotto oranges growing on a tree
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Sapindales
Family: Rutaceae
Genus: Citrus
Species: C. myrtifolia
Binomial name
Citrus myrtifolia

Citrus myrtifolia, the myrtle-leaved orange tree, is a species of Citrus with foliage similar to that of the common myrtle. It is a compact tree with small leaves and no thorns which grows to a height of three metres and can be found in Malta, Libya and in the Liguria, Tuscany, Sicily, and Calabria regions of Italy.

The fruit of the tree resemble small oranges. They are sour or bitter and are commonly called by their Italian name, chinotto. They are an essential flavoring agent of most Italian amari, of the popular Campari aperitif, and of several brands of carbonated soft drinks that are generically called "chinotto".

Citrus myrtifolia is sometimes planted in gardens. Due to its compactness, it can also be planted in a pot or other container.


Chinoto a sour myritifolia orange, at the Linnean House of the Missouri Botanical Garden.
  • Citrus aurantium var. myrtifolia Ker-Gawl. in Bot. Reg. vol. 4, t. 346, in textu. 1818.
  • Citrus pumila Marc. in Izv. Sochin. Obl. Sukhum. Stants. vol. 2. 1921.


  • Chandler, W. H., S. N. Hooper & M. J. Harvey - Evergreen orchards. Kimpton London 1958: 535 pp.
  • Facciola, S. - Cornucopia. A source book of edible plants. Kampong Publ. Vista 1990: 677 pp.
  • Hodgson, R. W. (1965): Taxonomy and nomenclature in the Citrus fruits (pp 317-331) - In: S. Krishnamurthi (ed.) - Advances in agriculture sciences and their applications Agric. Coll. Res. Inst. Coimbatore.
  • Mortensen, E. & E. T. Bullard - Handbook of tropical and subtropical horticulture. (3. ed. 1966). Department of State Agency for International Development Washington 1964: 260 pp.
  • Morton, J. F. (ed.) - Fruits of warm climates. Creative Resource System Winterville, N.C. 1987: 505 pp.
  • Swingle, W. T. (1946): The botany of Citrus and its wild relatives of the orange subfamily (family Rutaceae, subfamily Aurantioideae) (pp 129-474) - In: H. J. Webber & L. D. Batchelor (eds.) - The citrus industry. Vol. 1. History, botany und breeding Univ. of California Press Berkeley: 1028 pp.
  • Tanaka, T. - Species problem in Citrus. A critical study of wild and cultivated units of Citrus, based upon field studies in their native homes. Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science Ueno 1954: 152 pp.
  • Webber, H. J. (1946): Cultivated varieties of Citrus (pp 475-668) - In: H. J. Webber & L. D. Batchelor (eds.) - The Citrus industry; 1. History, botany and breeding Univ. of California Press Berkeley: 1028 pp.

External links

  • Media related to Citrus 'Myrtifolia' at Wikimedia Commons
  • NCBI Taxonomy Database
  • Mansfield's World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops
  • USDA Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN) entry
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