Finger Limes loving the shade – Citrus australasica

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My friend has the magic touch when it comes to growing all things edible and so of course her fingers limes are abundant in the Autumn 🤩. She has two varieties one is Citrus australasica ‘Rainforest Pearl’, a grafted form. Which in my humble opinion is the sweetest and juiciest of them all and the other is the straight species Citrus australasica.

Citrus australasica ‘Rainforest Pearl’

And the crop this year on the ‘Rainforest Pearl’ was out of control at around 6kg, unfortunately I was a little too late with my camera to capture the plant when it was really ladened with fruit. But still every branch is heavy with big juicy fruits which fall in the wind.

The image above shows the size of the shrub in relation to my medium sized naughty dog😉 It is growing under the shade of a large Callistemon and receives only a few hours of morning sun.

Citrus australasica ‘Rainforest Pearl’

The tree is well mulched and the soil is reasonably fertile although nothing special. I do honestly think the secret to its success is the position, it mimics the natural environment where fingers limes would normally grow, as an understory plant in the rainforest.

Citrus australasica

The second finger lime lives on the south side of a wall at the bottom of a slope, it is dense and luscious and makes a beautiful screen and bird habitat plant.

Citrus australasica

Its fruit are shorter and a little more astringent but it also produces exceedingly well over Autumn.

Citrus australasica

Needless to say I am very jealous of both of these plants, they not only provide an excellent harvest but they also look good too. It makes me think it is high time finger limes were utilised more for their ornamental value in the garden. They make great screening shrubs for covering ugly fences or walls and also can fill a difficult dark corner with bright shiny green foliage.

Citrus australasica ‘Rainforest Pearl’

And perhaps by planting them simply to look good it might in some strange contrary way encourage them to fruit as ferociously as my friends, good luck everybody! Remember provide your Finger Limes with some sun protection.


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