Saturday, October 3, 2009

The O Range around the World (Full Circle)

Orange, the name of a tree growing in warm regions, the fruit of which is in very common use. There are several varieties, though they are usually considered to belong to one species. It has been cultivated in India from very early days, and from thence has spread into Western Asia, Europe and America. It was probably brought to Europe by the Moors. It has a medium sized ever-green tree, with thick, smooth leaves, and very fragrant white wax like flowers. The fruit is round, yellow, with a thick rind and juicy pulp, divided into sections. The tree is cultivated in all parts of the world where the climate is suitable. In the United States it is grown largely in Florida, California and Louisiana. The Lisbon orange, China orange, blood or Maltese orange, remarkable for its red pulp; the egg orange, shaped like an egg; Mandarin orange, and the seedless Majorca orange are some of the different varieties. The bitter orange has a bitter juice, and is used in medicine and for flavoring food. The flowers are used as ornaments for brides in a great many countries, and dried with the dried leaves, furnish an oil which is much used in perfumery. They are packed in barrels of salt, and exported from the south of Europe. The fruit of the orange bears transportation better than most fruits, and is a very important article of commerce. They are gathered before they are quite ripe, and wrapped separately in paper, and packed boxes or chests. The boxes hold about 250 oranges. The small green oranges that fall from the trees are dried and used in making Curacoa, a drink, and also yield an oil. The orange rind dried is used in medicine and cooking, and candied is used in confectionery, and it is also used in Italy in the preparation of a drink called rosoglio. The trees are very fruitful, bearing from 3,000 to 10,000 oranges in a year, and a single acre will acre will produce ten tons of oranges, They often live from a 100 to 150 years. A grove of young orange trees is not really valuable until the seventh year after planting. The wood of the orange is used in fine cabinet work, being smooth and fine grained. [See Handbook of Orange Culture, by Moore.}