The "Finger Lemon" plant, also known as "Citrus medica var. digitata" or "Buddha's Hand," is a unique and striking citrus fruit cultivar. It is not your typical lemon with a rounded shape but rather a complex, finger-like structure. Here is a description of the Finger Lemon plant:
Appearance: The Finger Lemon plant is known for its distinctive appearance, resembling multiple elongated yellow fingers radiating from a central base. The fruit's shape is similar to that of multiple twisted, gnarled fingers, hence the name "Buddha's Hand." The fingers can vary in number, with some having just a few and others having many.
Fruit: The fruit of the Finger Lemon plant is segmented into finger-like sections that are elongated and often contorted. The skin is bright yellow and thick, with a fragrant and aromatic zest. The fruit contains little to no juice or pulp and is primarily cultivated for its zest and rind, which are often used for culinary and aromatic purposes.
Fragrance: The zest of the Finger Lemon emits a strong and pleasant citrus fragrance. This aroma is often used in perfumes, potpourris, and for aromatherapy purposes due to its invigorating and uplifting qualities.
Flavor and Culinary Uses: While the Finger Lemon fruit itself is not typically consumed due to its lack of juice and pulp, the zest is highly valued for its intense lemon flavor. It imparts a strong lemony essence to dishes, baked goods, beverages, and culinary creations. The zest can be grated, sliced, or used in various recipes that call for lemon flavor.
Cultivation: Finger Lemon plants are typically grown as ornamental trees in gardens and can also be cultivated in pots. They require similar care to other citrus plants, including well-draining soil, adequate sunlight, and regular watering. These plants are more cold-tolerant compared to some other citrus varieties but still prefer warm climates.