When are Texas Grapefruit in Season?
Grapefruit, botanical name Citrus paradise, is a natural hybrid between a pomelo and sweet orange. It was first known as “the forbidden fruit” and was later called “grapefruit” due to its grape-like cluster when growing on trees.
Texas Grapefruit History
It is believed that the white grapefruit found its way to the United States in the form of seeds brought by French or Spanish settlers and the fruit was introduced to South Texas by visiting Spanish missionaries.
White grapefruits were cultivated first, followed by pink grapefruit varieties in the first reported planted grove in Texas in 1893. In 1914 John H. Shary “Father of the Citrus Industry” bought a 16,000 acre brush land which he cleared to grow his crop of seeded white grapefruits.
Sadly, people did not immediately enjoy the acidic, bitter taste of the white grapefruits. Fortunately, Texan growers did not give up and continued growing and experimenting with their grapefruit crops and were rewarded in 1929 with a mutated, deliciously sweet-tangy, red grapefruit that was sweeter than grapefruit pink was discovered. The red grapefruit is entirely different from the sour-tart flavor of its white counterpart.
Coined the Ruby Red grapefruit, this sweet grapefruit gave birth to Texas grapefruit industry.
The bright, red-fleshed Texas grapefruits are in peak season from October to June with July, August, and September as off-peak season, although they are sometimes available all year round.
Also, the grapefruit season coincides with the Christmas holiday season making them extra special during that time of year where families and friends get to enjoy the juiciest, sweetest and finest of Texas grapefruits.
Great for eating fresh, grapefruits can also be used to make energizing grapefruit juice, refreshing grapefruit smoothie blended with other citrus fruits, tasty marinades and amazing alternative for recipes requiring lemons and limes.
Aside from its wonderful flavor, grapefruits are packed with nutritious elements like Vitamin A, Vitamin C, potassium, vitamin B1, dietary fiber and other phytochemicals like liminoids and lycopene. Moreover, the calories in a grapefruit are only at 42 per 100 grams.
Due to the nutrients they contain, grapefruits are said to help reduce weight, control diabetes, decrease risk of certain forms of cancer, promote healthy digestive tracks, regular bowel movement, and improve cognitive performance and memory. Aside from that, grapefruits have also been shown to lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels, resulting in lower risk of heart disease and lower blood pressure.