Kumquat is the little citrus globally and is native to the Asian continent, and its use varies from exotic recipes, home remedies, tea, masks and tonics, etc. From this small fruit are derived distinguished variations where we can mention daisy kumquat, hindsii kumquat, nagami kumquat and fukushuu kumquat.
Today we will talk about these last two variants, which, although many times we think of these orange trees as all the same, the truth is that among their variants, there are very similar factors as well as many differences.
Similarities between fukushu and nagami kumquats
These two small citruses belong to the Fortunella family. The fruits of these plants are born from Rutaceae flowers (plant-flower that produces seed), they are native to the Asian continent, and their names were given by the Scottish botanist Robert Fortune.
The cultivation and maintenance of their trees are the same, and the resources needed too, such as fertilizers and substrates, even when they are two different plants.
They also need the same type of soil, climate and temperature, which must be tropical or subtropical since these types of Fortunella are not at all resistant to cold.
If you want to find more detailed information on growing and maintaining these trees, you can check the post “How to grow kumquats“.
These two species of kumquat contain the same nutritional values and have specific characteristics very similar to each other, such as the bright orange colour of their skin and the intense orange of their pulp. Also, their trees and flowers are very similar, the two types of trees are considered dwarf trees, and their flowers emanate the classic aroma of kumquat.
Differences from fukushu and nagami kumquat
The specific location of the origin of the kumquat nagami version corresponds to the Islands of Malatia and parts of China. Instead, the fukushuu kumquat providence is still unknown; but people believe it comes from some part of China or Japan.
The appearance of the trees, leaves and fruits are also a little different. For example, the kumquat fukushu or kumquat obovata (another name given to this variety) is rounder and a little larger than the other classes of kumquats. In fact, years ago, the consumer believed that the fukushu did not belong to the Fortunella family, nor was it a variety of kumquat, as it was too large compared to the other variants of this one.
The nagami kumquat is oval and one of the smallest species, and also more commercialized in Asia, Europe and part of the United States. The other varieties of kumquat are not as popular in the market.
The fukushu kumquat tree is compact and spherical, and the nagami kumquat tree does not have a specific shape, and its branches are more widespread. In contrast, the fukushu branches grow closer together, forming a bushier tree.
- The two trees are used ornamentally.
- In countries such as China and Japan, the seeds of the two species are widely used to make bonsai.
- The measurements of the two trees vary between 4 to 7 meters in height.
- They are consumed in different vibrant recipes such as soup, salads, natural juices and desserts.
- The two types of fruits are considered part of the smallest citrus group in the world.
- The two species of fruits are consumed whole.
- The skin of the two species of kumquat are shiny, edible, thin and sweet.
- The Fortunella Fukushuu plant does not contain any thorns; however, the nagami sometimes has one or another thorn on its branches and trunk.
- The leaves of fukushu trees are slightly broader and more prominent than those of nagami.
- The pulp of the fruits of fukushu is sweeter and less acidic than those of nagami kumquat.
- The pulp of nagami kumquat also contains four divisions or segments, while fukushu contains between five and up to eight segments.
- The amount of seed per fruit of the nagami is five to seven seeds. The fukushu contains about four to six seedlings at most.
What is the best kumquat option between nagami and fukushuu?
One of the most challenging tasks is to choose between two things that have a lot of resemblances, and this is the case of these two varieties of the same fruit. The kumquat is an exotic fruit not famous outside Europe and Asia; however, for those who know it, there is no doubt that it is one of the best fruits that exist.
This fruit has a perfect combination between acid and sweet, is full of vitamins and nutrients that benefit our body and health, the flowers and leaves have an exquisite smell, and its small size makes it a plant that we would like to have at home.
For some, perhaps the tiny size of its fruits is a problem, although, for the vast majority, the size of the kumquats provide practical and sometimes somewhat addictive results.
From these four varieties of this fruit, we compared 2 of them in the previous table, and as we could observe their differences and similarities, and if we were asked to choose between the two species or variants, which one would you choose?
So guess what, it will depend on each person’s tastes since we are not all the same. If you do not like such small fruits, you can opt for the variety of fukushuu since it is much larger than the other varieties.
Another essential factor is how are you going to use them. Both varieties contain the same nutrients; however, if you make salads or sauces with kumquats, it is advisable to use the nagami since these have a balanced flavor between their acidic pulp and their sweet skin, which give a unique flavor.
On the other hand, Fukushuu is less acidic and much sweeter, perfect for jams.
Nagami kumquat is the most commercial variety in the United States and Europe, so it is easier to get them instead of fukushuu kumquat; therefore, you must consider this when planning to get any variety of kumquats.