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Citrus

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Taxonomy:
Family:
Rutaceae
Genus:
Citrus
Species:
C. Limon, C. sinensis, C. aurantifolia, C. reticulata, C. paradise, C. maxima
Occurrence & Agricultural Importance in this Country:
Cultivation Areas:

Citrus Cultivation in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is 14.9 thousand hectares and produces about 169 thousand tons per year.

Citrus cultivation in Saudi Arabia is carried out in several different areas, but the most popular area are Najran and Riyadh. 

Saudi Arabia imports fresh oranges (around 315KT), lemons (around 105KT) (Data source: US statistics of Agriculture in 2010).  In addition, other varieties of citrus fruits and juices are also imported.

Main Varieties:

Oranges, tangerines, lemons, grapefruit, sweet lemon, bitter orange.

Marketing Information and Uses:
Use:
Citrus fruits are used in many industries and applications although direct consumption or indirect consumption such as juice, jam, medication, feed, manufacture of fragrances.
Markets:
The Average production of the Kingdom in citrus is 13.6 tons per hectare while the global average is 25 tons per hectare.
Crop Management:
Cultivation conditions and methods:
Soil Type:

Citrus tolerates a wide range of soil texture and can be grown in light, medium, and heavy soils with availability of good nutrition. Citrus is intolerant to salt in the soil.

Citrus can tolerate the low temperature but it can be affected by frost and the ability of Tolerances frost to citrus will be different from one kind to another. Growth in citrus starts from 13 C with the optimum temperature between 28 -32 C and there is a clear relationship between growth and temperature. Generally if there is availability of right climate and humidity the citrus tree keeps growing most of the year but the spring cycle is the most effective contributor to annual cropping. 

Water Requirements:
One hectare of citrus needs 8600 – 9700 m3 of water. Irrigation requirements depend on factors such as the age of trees and the prevailing soil type, together with the different temperatures encountered throughout the year. Soil salinity and quality of the irrigation water also has an effect of a successful production.
Nutrition Requirements:
Soil should be subject to soil analysis for nutrient availability to ensure healthy and high quality of citrus crop.
Harvesting Period:
The best time for harvesting is mid of November – mid of December and some kinds in the beginning of December or at the end of it.
Harvesting Methods:
Hand picking

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