Kumquats and their Cousins


- Native to South East China
- An ancient and revered plant long cultivated in China and Japan and originally classified as Citrus japonica.
- Introduced to the West by Robert Fortune, a plant hunter, in 1846 and re-classified (because of botanical differences in the fruit) as its own species with the name Fortunella.
- The older name of Citrus is now considered valid hence the confusion in horticulture where it sometimes called Citrus and sometimes called Fortunella.
- Now widely grown throughout the world for commercial purposes and as a culinary and ornamental amenity plant.


- Slow growing
- Small fruit, mostly oval
- Medium to thick edible rind that is sweet, aromatic and spicy with an acid base
- Not much pulp i.e. few segments usually more acid than the rind
- Fruit holds well on the tree
- Small pointed seeds if any at all
- Fruit will set without being pollinated and therefore be seedless
- High levels of calcium and potassium along with Vitamins C


- Likes the sun but will tolerate a little shade
- Well drained fertile soil
- Doesn't like strong wind
- Will tolerate higher levels of cold and heat that other Citrus
- Still best to protect from harsh frost when young
- Pollinated by bees
- Often has heavy crops so some thinning out of fruit may be required
- Ripe towards the end of autumn/winter but holds well on the tree

Culinary Purposes

- Marmalade
- Asian Style Cooking
- Candied Peel
- Chutney
- Can be preserved whole

NB - All parts of the Kumquat can be eaten, often the skin is sweeter than the flesh.

Most Popular Varieties For Culinary Purposes


Kumquat Ngami(Fortunella margarita)Oval Kumquat
Kumquat Marumi(Fortunella japonica)Round Kumquat
Kumquat Meiwa(Fortunella hybrid)Large Round Kumquat
Limequat(xCitrofortunella)Lime x Kumquat


Wairere Nursery
826 Gordonton Road, R D 1, Hamilton 3281 Ph: (07) 824 3430 Email: