Persian Lime Tree (dwarf)
Lime, Persian (Bearss)
Scientific Name: Citrus latifolia
History/general species info: Limes are complex hybrids arising from mandarin, pomelo, citron and hystrix ancestors, refined by thousands of years of cultivation, introduced in California between 1850 and 1880. While it is believed to have come from Tahiti, it is also thought to have come from Persian. Hence the different common names. Today, the Tahiti/Persian lime tree, is primarily grown in Mexico for commercial export and other warm, subtropical countries such as Cuba, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Egypt, Israel and Brazil.
Characteristics: This attractive citrus tree maintains a petite and compact form that works great in smaller gardens or on patios. It can be container-grown throughout much of the U.S., and this tree is generally an easy-to-care-for plant that asks for little and gives a lot. Of course, the best thing about it is the fruit, which is seedless and slightly larger than a key lime. Persian Bearss limes are flavorful and acidic, great to add to drinks or use in cooking whenever limes or lime juice is called for.
Flower: yes, white, fragrant
Planting / Care: More cold hardy than the Mexican lime and Key lime. Plant in full sun, 15-20 feet from buildings or other trees, and preferably planted in well-drained soil. Water prior to planting. Can be planted any time of the year when the climate is consistently warm, however the best time is October, February, March. Prone to root rot, so avoid damp areas or those that flood or retain water. Mound the soil up instead of leaving any depression, which would retain water. Fertilize every two to three months with ¼ pound fertilizer increasing to 1 pound per tree. Once established, the fertilizing schedule may be adjusted to 3 - 4 applications per year following manufacturer instructions for the increasing size of the tree. The Persian lime tree pruning schedule is limited and need only be utilized to remove disease and maintain a picking height of 6-8 feet. For more information click here.
Size and Spacing: Up to 8 feet tall
Pollinator needed to bear fruit: No; self pollinating
“Limes are challenging to grow but worth the effort” - Victoria Advocate
Citrus and Fruit/Nut Resources
Diagnosis of common citrus problems
Growing Healthy Citrus in the Backyard