Nagami Kumquat Overview:
If you like sweet and sour this nugget sized citrus fruit is for you. This is a rather cold tolerant citrus tree that just gives and gives nearly all year long.
Nagami Kumquat Fruit:
Nagami Kumquat Fruit Appearance:
The fruit is the size and shape of a large olive. However, the outer color and texture is similar to an orange. The plant is very prolific and has fruit nearly the whole year.
Nagami Kumquat Taste:
This plant is unusual in the citrus family because the skin is edible. In fact the skin is the sweet part of the fruit and is sometimes the only thing eaten. The flesh is juicy but very sour and acidic, similar to the flavor of a lemon. The fruit is ripe when the majority of the skin is orange with perhaps a small hint of green remaining at the top.
Nagami Kumquat Fruit Season:
I have read that the fruit matures late in winter. However, I don’t think my Nagami Kumquat trees have read the books because there are fruits on this amazing tree all year.
- The Nagami kumquat is a slow growing large shrub or small tree with an overall rounded shape and dense evergreen foliage.
- Because the Nagami kumquat is among the most cold tolerant of all citrus, it could possibly be planted in lower parts of your yard that have a tendency to collect cool air. However, the fruit is said to be sweeter when it is grown in warmer environments.
- Nagami Kumquat has white fragrant flowers which and are similar in appearance to other citrus flowers. Nagami Kumquat trees almost always bloom in the summer but I have noticed that the plant has a tendency to flower periodically throughout the year. The small orange fruit make the plant very ornamental. The plant is very prolific. In the main fruiting season (winter) there are so many fruit on the trees that I have that the branches completely bend over.
- The Nagami Kumquat is also used in Bonsai and the plant is definitely suitable for large pots.
- Prune in winter.
Nagami Kumquat Tree Soil:
The Nagami Kumquat does better with slightly acidic soil. Augmenting with lots of organic material will always help your citrus.
- Water on the same cycle as other citrus; 1 to 3x/week in the summer depending on your local micro-climate.
- Infrequent deep heavy watering is much better than frequent light watering.
- You can cut way back on the watering in the winter after the tree is established.
- Mulching helps to keep the soil from drying out.
- Citrus don’t like standing water.
Nagami Kumquat Fertilization:
- The tree is more susceptible to zinc deficiency that other citrus. However, like all citrus it also needs other micronutrients. I add micronutrients to the topsoil in the spring.
- I also provide a balanced fertilizer throughout the growing season (4x/y). In general, I have noticed that all of my citrus appreciate an assortment of different types of fertilizers throughout the year. Throwing in a random assortment of organic fertilizer whenever you have it is always appreciated (compost, worm castings etc).
- Because it goes into a dormant non-growth stage sage in the winter, the plant is one of the most cold tolerant of all citrus. I have read that the Nagami Kumquat is able to withstand temperatures as low as 14F! But I wouldn’t recommend pushing that chilly temperature limit.
- For more information about the lowest temperatures that you can expect in your area, check out my article “Climate Zones: What can I grow in my yard?”
Susceptible to the usual citrus pests such as the citrus leafminer.
- If you like sour, you can just pop them in your mouth peal and all. If you eat the fruit all at once it is a powerfully and intense hit to your taste buds. When I eat the Nagami Kumquat fruit this way, it almost reminds me of Gatorade gum.
- Some people will just eat the rind because that is the sweet part and toss the sour juicy center.
- Nagami Kumquat fruit is also used to make preserves, marmalade and candied.
- Garnish drinks/cocktails.
- The sour juice can be made into a lemonade like drink.
- Cut the whole fruit into thin slices for salads.