Desert limes are the fruit from a tree species of true citrus, native to Australia - citrus glauca. In their natural setting desert lime trees are bountiful fruit producers in good seasons. Desert lime trees evolved and occur naturally across the challenging outback and will thrive when taken to other environments withstanding both heat and frost. The desert lime genus citrus glauca grafts readily on to commercial citrus rootstock selections and this is the preferred propagation method for home gardens and commercial production. Grafted trees are now growing in all States including Tasmania. Fruit is small but has exceptional flavour. Desert lime fruit has outstanding health enhancing attributes with high levels of natural Vitamin C, Lutein, Folate and the antioxidant Vitamin E.
Desert lime trees retain interesting desert adaptation characteristics. They are the quickest citrus species in the world to set fruit after flowering. They protect themselves against grazing animals by sharp thorns. However, after growing above the browse height of large kangaroos the trees grow no more thorns. Propagation is from cuttings taken high in the tree that are free of thorns. Historically the fruit was eaten by aborigines and has been used by generations of outback people to make thirst-quenching infused drinks and cordial and delicious sauces, marmalades, pickles and chutneys.
The ‘Abundance’ selection of desert lime tree made by Jock Douglas is now available to all Australian States. It is proven as a high yielding fruit producer and has an attractive rounded shape. Abundance desert lime trees are highly suitable as productive home garden trees and as valuable commercial producers for orchard plantings.
The Douglas family encourages plantings of this exceptional native citrus and will readily pass on advice from their extensive experience.