The Finger Lime
There are six species of native citrus in Australia. One of the rainforest fruits introduced to colonists by indigenous Australians is the fingerlime. Borne on a spiny shrub, trees are still found in the rainforest between Ballina on the far North Coast of NSW to Southern Queensland, a total area of 100 kms. After clearing for native timber to enable dairy farming. Some varieties of fruit being up to 12 cm long come in many colours, shapes, and have the widest pallette of colours of any other fruit species. Open, the flesh is caviar-like in appearance, each tiny crystal with a unique lime flavour.
Commercial plantings are now occurring in the NSW and Southern Queensland regions. Fingerlime production in Australia are all cultivated, there is no wild harvest. Propagated using bud wood from mother trees that have been trialled and fruit true to type. As trees grown from seed are not always true to type, grow slower and take longer to produce fruit. Some Varieties sold by Australian Fingerlime Caviar are cultivars registered by ACRA (Australian Cultivar Registration Authority). These cultivars are available from Judy Viola Citrus Nursery and A.I.Eyles & Sons, Kenthurst, NSW.