How Did the Grapefruit Get Its Name?
The grapefruit gets its name because it often grows in a large cluster resembling a bunch of grapes. Sometimes as many as a dozen or more large grapefruit may grow on a single stem. Premature grapefruit looks similar in shape to unripe green grapes.
Most botanists agree that the grapefruit is a cross between a Pummelo and a sweet orange. Grapefruit, like all citrus fruit, is a Hesperidum, or a large modified berry with a thick rind.
A grapefruit grows larger than the largest orange. Its smooth skin becomes bright yellow when it is ripe. Until late in the 19th century, grape fruit trees were grown only as ornamental trees in the United States.
Few people ate the mildly bitter fruit in olden times. They let the ripe fruit fall to the ground and rot. Today grapefruit is a popular breakfast or salad fruit.