|Species||Citrus × lumia Risso & Poit.|
The lumia (Citrus lumia Risso. & Poit., or Citrus aurantiifolia (Christm. et Panz.) Swingle var. lumia hort.) is also called the pear lemon (Citrus × lumia 'pyriformis'), since its shape resembles a pear. It is also called French lime and sometimes sweet lemon, even though it is not necessarily sweet.
In German, the lumia is called Birnenlimone, Patriarch-Citrone, Süsse Limone or Birnenlumie; in French it is called Poire du commandeur. In Chinese it is called Lu mi (露蜜), in Japanese Rumii (ル ミー), Vietnamese, Chanh Pháp.
The fruit resembles a pear in shape, has a thick peel and is not very juicy. Like a citron, it can grow to a formidable size.
Origin and genetics
The most known origin for the Lumia is the Mediterranean basin. The Lumia is also classified as Citrus limon var. lumia by Swingle which places it under the taxonomy of lemon, and Citrus medica L. var. lumia, that suggests it is similar to citron.
Lumias represent several distinct citrus hybrids. Usually lumias are referred to as a citron hybrid, because of its size, thick peel and dryness of pulp. Pomo d'Adamo was also described by Johann Christoph Volkamer as a Cedrato which is Italian for a citron hybrid, whilst Cedro refers to a true citron.
A recent genomic analysis of several species commonly called 'lemons' or 'limes' revealed that the various individual lumias have different genetic backgrounds. The 'Hybride Fourny' was found to be an F1 hybrid of a citron- pomelo cross, while the 'Jaffa lemon' was a more complex cross between the two species, perhaps an F2 hybrid. The Pomme d'Adam arose from a citron-micrantha cross, while two other lumias, the ‘Borneo’ and ‘Barum’ lemons, were found to be citron-pomelo-micrantha mixes.
In The Citrus Industry, Hodgson would write of the lumias:
Fruits Resembling the Citron. — There are numerous fruits in which citron characters are strongly pronounced. The lumias of the Mediterranean basin are natural hybrids in which acid citron or lemon and pummelo characters are evident. According to Chapot (1950a), they are characterized by fruits of large size, commonly somewhat pyriform, with highly acid flesh of greenish color, large purple-tinged flowers, and young shoot growth both pubescent and purple-tinted. Chapot states that the principal clonal varieties are "Poire du Commandeur", "Citron de Borneo" (Chapot, 1964d), and "Pomme d'Adam". They are of ancient and unknown origin, presumably Italian, and are grown only as curiosities or ornamentals. The giant-fruited "Sui Khar" citron of Punjab State (Hodgson, Singh and Singh, 1963), the "Kabbad" citron of Damascus (Chapot, 1963f), and the "yemmakaipuli" of Coorg (India) also appear to fall in this group.
According to a Japanese study of 1996, the albedo extract of the Lumia, was shown to possess the highest inhibitory activity against cyclooxygenase (IC50 = 24 μg/mL), among other citrus studied. Flavedo extract of ripe Lumia inhibited cyclooxygenase to the same degree as the albedo, more than the pulp extract.
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- "Citrus pomum Adami = Citronier pomme d'Adam. [Adam's apple or Paradise apple]". NYPL Digital Collections.
- Nurembergishe Hesperidioum, Teil 3, Cap. 36.
- Curk, Franck; Ollitrault, Frédérique; Garcia-Lor, Andres; Luro, François; Navarro, Luis; Ollitrault, Patrick (2016). "Phylogenetic origin of limes and lemons revealed by cytoplasmic and nuclear markers". Annals of Botany. 11: 565–583. doi:10.1093/aob/mcw005. PMC 4817432. PMID 26944784.
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MADDI Taklit., Pérez-Román, E., Maiza-Benabdesselam, F. Khettal B., Talon M., Ibanez-Gonzalez V. 2018. New Citrus chloroplast haplotypes revealed by molecular markers using Algerian and Spanish accessions. Genet Resour Crop Evol 65: 2199. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10722-018-0685-7