Japanese cuisine has become extremely popular over the past few years and there are several well known Japanese restaurants named Yuzu around Auckland. However, Yuzu is also the name of a peculiar and potentially delicious citrus fruit, and recently there has been an upsurge in its popularity and Kings are currently stocking this relatively unknown citrus variety.
The fruit itself is mildly ugly, and fairly dry, which can put people off if it's not what they're expecting. However, if they figure out the right way to use it, they’ll undoubtedly be able to harness it's highly aromatic flavour to create some culinary masterpieces. Traditionally it has commonly been used in East Asia, and is a fairly vital component in the creation of Suimono (a delightfully delicate Japanese soup) and Yuzu Kosho (a spicy savoury sauce), and in Korea to make the hot drink yujacha (a marmalade like syrup that is added to hot water).
The Yuzu originates from East Asia (Japan, China, and Korea) and has a tart flavour reminiscent of a grapefruit, but with mandarin overtones, often used in cooking and for garnishes. It is more cold tolerant than most citrus so can be grown in colder areas of the country, and is suitable for container growing, allowing the tree to grow approximately 1.5-2m. All Citrus Trees are self fertile and are best grown in full sun in free draining soil rich in organic matter. Trees need at least six hours of full sun a day.
Kings recommend digging a hole that is at least twice as deep and twice as wide as the tree roots, and in heavier soils, digging a slightly deeper hole is recommended. The hole should be backfilled and earth should be mixed with compost, sheep pellets and either Kings Slow Release Fruit and Citrus Fertiliser or Nature’s Organic Fertiliser. The Kings team also recommend breaking up the sides of the hole as it is backfilled, as smooth sides to the hole can cause it to act like a bucket and fill up with water. The tree should be planted level with the ground, or in heavier soils, into a slight mound to improve drainage. Use Kings Slow Release Fruit and Citrus Fertiliser, and for a natural option feed with Sheep Pellets and Ocean Grow.
For more information on Kings garden centres and their garden supplies please visit the website at http://www.kings.co.nz .