Characteristics of Limeberry Tree (Triphasia trifolia) in the Wild

Triphasia trifolia
Limeberry is a species of Triphasia plant from the Rutaceae family, originating from tropical Southeast Asia in Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines.

Limeberry trees are still closely related to the citrus (Citrus). It has scientific or botanical synonym names that are still in use, such as Limonia trifolia and Triphasia aurantiola.

Common names used to refer to limeberry trees in English are Lime berry, Sweet lime, and Limoncitong castle. While in Indonesia he is known as Jeruk kingkit (Jawa), Kalijage, Kingkip (Sunda), Kingkit, Limau kiah, Limau kunci (Melayu), Jeruk rante (Madura), Lemo-lemo (Makassar dan Ternate), and Joji koyo (Tidore).

Limeberry trees have been widely introduced and cultivated in tropical and subtropical regions throughout the world and have been naturalized on several islands in the Pacific Ocean.

This tree has been recorded as a potentially invasive species in several islands of the Indian Ocean, and along the coast of the United States from Florida to Texas and in the Caribbean.

In subtropical climates, limeberry trees must be stored in a greenhouse where they cannot stand frost.


Characteristics of Limeberry Leaf

Triphasia trifolia Leaf
Source : Ziarnek, Kenraiz

The leaves are trifoliate, shiny dark green, each leaflet is 2-4 cm long and 1.5-2 cm wide.


Characteristics of Limeberry Flower

Triphasia trifolia Flower
Source : Khare

The flowers are white with three petals 10-10 mm long and 4 mm wide. At first glance, the leaves and flowers are similar to Orange jessamine (Murraya paniculata).


Characteristics of Limeberry Fruit

Triphasia trifolia Fruit
Source :

The fruit is green when still young and turns red when ripe. Limeberries are 10-15 mm in diameter and can be eaten.

Fruit flesh is smooth, with a flavor that resembles a lime, but a little sweeter.


Characteristics of Limeberry Tree

Triphasia trifolia Tree
Source : J. Stang

Limeberry trees grow in the form of thorny shrubs (rarely in the form of upright trees) and grow to a height of 2-3 meters.

Limeberry has gained popularity because it is widely planted as an ornamental tree and bonsai subject.

Serat Centhini (literature in New Javanese literature) said that the Javanese court princess used limeberries to care for her nails.


Limeberry trees are cultivated for fruit harvesting that has economic value.

Limeberry fruit is effective as cough medicine and its leaves are used to treat stomach aches.

The tree is often used as a shade tree house yard or road divider in the Thousand Islands.


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