Dwarf Kaffir Lime (Citrus hystrix)
Rather than for their fruit, Kaffir Lime trees are mostly grown for their lovely, aromatic leaves which provide the citrus flavour to a variety of different dishes, like aromatic rice and green curry. As a tree, it can be a pretty dense, compact grower, and has a very distinct double-lobed, dark green leaf.
The fruit is on the smaller side with a wrinkly appearance that makes it look a bit like a little green brain. The fruit doesn’t have much flesh or juice content, but its skin can still be used for zesting.
Kaffir Limes are already a relatively small growing tree, with the dwarf form staying even smaller, getting to around 1.5m tall in its lifetime. It can live happily in the ground or in a pot. If the pot is large enough, the dwarf may even reach its full size. The tree can be quite easily maintained with regular pruning and picking of the leaves which will help keep it more compact and encourage more leaf growth.
When looking for a Kaffir Lime trees, be sure to see them in person if possible. There are a few different strains available in Australia, and some can have large thorns. The strain grown at Engall’s has small thorns and a larger leaf that’s a lot more aromatic.
For our citrus care recommendations, please check our Help & Advice page!