Book Review

Citruspflanzen von Tropisch bis Winterhart

by Bernhard Voss

Published and distributed by the author: Bernhard Voss, Moorende 149, 21635 JORK, Germany. Price DM 34.80 plus shipping; contact the publisher for postal rates to the USA. 122 pages.
(Price/availability info may have changed since original publication of review.)

Reviewed by C.T. Kennedy (3/2000)

Among the recent triumphs of CRFG was bringing true hardy citrus to the attention of Americans who live outside the usual zone of citrus culture. In particular, the unusual hybrids of kumquat, Poncirus (trifoliate orange) and Changsha were reviewed in earlier years of the FRUIT GARDENER, and gained us many friends abroad and especially in Texas, where a CRFG chapter has been formed.

One of those friends and FRUIT GARDENER contributors, Edwin Frey of Ronco, Canton Ticino in Switzerland, has sent a copy of the recent Citruspflanzen von Tropisch bis Winterhart, a quarto paperback of 122 pages, magnificently illustrated on almost every page with color photos of the 50 most important hardy citrus hybrids and their near-hardy parents. These include most of the obscure trifoliate hybrids so important to our Texas members, and others sold by nurserymen in Oregon and eastern states. The hardy citrus of member Edwin Frey are of course included, as well as USDA and recent University of California hybrids; some hardy, others less so.

Most of these citrus have never been described, let alone color illustrated, other than in the pages of the FRUIT GARDENER--which is acknowledged by the author. This new book provides detailed information for 76 citrus relatives and hybrids. A typical page is devoted to picture, history (in German), hardiness in degrees Celsius, whether the featured fruit is polyembryonic or not, and its size and flavor.

This is a treasure for citrus enthusiasts. As one might expect, there is not a mass market for the book, so the author has published and sells the book himself. Not to worry if you donít read German; the pictures alone are worth the price. I know of no other color photos of Microcitrus, Bergamot, Orangequat or Ichang and its hybrids. There are recommendations for indoor and protected cultural conditions, and a most up-to-date recapitulation of the purported affinities of Meyer and other citrus hybrids of mysterious origin.

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