Giant Kaffir Lime
These instructions are sent with the plant gift
This evergreen bush (Citrus hystrix) is grown for the wonderful flavoured leaves. It will live happily inside or in a conservatory in the winter and in the summer can make a striking patio plant. However, it is not frost hardy.
Like all citrus trees these Kaffir Lime needs lots of light and a stable environment. A cool room is best, protected from radiators and cold draughts.
Whilst in a small pot it will need regular watering and will appreciate some citrus feed every few weeks over the summer. With citrus, it is also best to water from the top allowing any excess water to drain away. Your Kaffir lime should never be allowed to sit in water and the top of the soil should be allowed to dry out completely between watering particularly in the winter months.
Young plants are grown for their leaves, but mature plants can produce wonderful rough-skinned limes which are also used in Oriental cooking. Plants can be re-potted in the spring or summer if they are starting to out grow their existing pots– a citrus compost is best as it needs acid soil. Over time you may wish to prune this bush in the winter to keep a compact shape.
The Kaffir lime leaves are a very popular spice in Thailand; their characteristic flavour appears in soups, stir-fries or curries. In Thai cuisine, Kaffir lime is frequently combined with garlic, galangal, ginger and fingerroot, together with liberal amount of chillies. Try them finely chopped in stir-fries or use them like bay leaves and remove before serving in Thai curries.
Sudden changes in environment, under or over watering can all cause leaf drop however with a return to regular watering and a stable temperature they will usually recover well.
The glossy leaves of the kaffir lime can pick up dust marks, if your plant develops dark grey marks over time they are likely to be dust or water marks which can easily be rubbed off with a clean cloth.