Types of oranges – There are many types of oranges depending on its size and taste. The most common types are sweet orange, blood orange, and bitter orange. These different types of oranges are used for eating, juicing or may also be used in the kitchen as ingredients to some home recipes.
All orange trees thrive in warm environment where the winter is cool but the temperatures do not go below freezing. Its flavour is highly affected by the temperature they are grown at: sugar forms during the hot days and the acid during cool nights making the orange one of the most flavourful fruit in the market today.
Here are some of the common types of oranges:
- Sweet Orange – As its name suggests, have a sweet flavour. It is a blend of sugar and acid and is round to oval in shape. The sweet orange tree usually reaches 6 metres (20 feet) in height. It has broad, glossy, evergreen leaves that are medium-sized and ovate and its leafstalks have narrow wings.
- Blood orange – This orange got its name after its deep red flesh. The red color is due to anthocyanin, an antioxidant that is found in many red fruits and vegetables such as berries. Blood oranges possess a distinctive taste that is less acidic than other oranges with rich, berry-tinged flavour like raspberry and strawberry. Compared to other oranges, blood orange is smaller with thick skin. These variant is available mostly in January to April.
- Bitter Orange – Also known as Seville orange is also a hybrid of pomelo and mandarin. It has a sour bitter taste compared to other types of oranges. It has a thick, dimpled skin that is rougher than other oranges and is usually used for making marmalade.
- Navel Orange – It is an orange that grows an underdeveloped second twin fruit opposite its stem. From the outside, it looks like a human navel – hence the name. They are seedless, easily peeled, less juicy and less bitter than other oranges making them less suitable for juices. Navel oranges are available in November to May. But since it is seedless, the only available way to propagate a navel orange tree is to graft cuttings onto other varieties of citrus tree.
- Cara Cara Navels – Also called “Red Navels”, is a type of navel orange that is sweet and comparatively low in acid content. It has a bright orange rind similar to other navels but has a distinctively pinkish red flesh. It has a super sweet taste with a bitter tang to them similar to a cranberry. Cara Cara navels are in season during December to April.
There are many other types of oranges in the market, each with a different size, shape and taste to it. If you are planning to plant an orange tree, you must take into consideration the different soil, water and temperature requirements per type of orange for it to grow. A well thriving orange tree can live up to centuries and still bear fruits.