SPRING 2011. MEYER LEMON. 03.25.11
A number of years ago, the only thing I wanted for my birthday was a lemon tree. I had seen a gorgeous lemon tree thriving, potted and indoors, in the living room of someone’s house. This tree, I was told, was more than 45 years old. It was large and healthy, with so many shiny green leaves and pretty, perfect lemons I thought it was surely plastic. This was my introduction to the Meyer lemon. My adorable husband found a baby Meyer lemon tree for me and had it shipped from the west coast to our home in Ohio. I coddled and babied this plant like you wouldn’t believe – especially if you saw any one of the orchids I’ve put to death over the years. I drove the little tree in the climate-controlled front seat of my hatchback when we relocated to D.C. When it was later afflicted with a pesky bug infestation, I sent it to North Carolina where my mother took it to a plant doctor and nursed it back to health. Back in its sunny corner at home the following season it produced 13 flawless specimens. And then it curled up and died. Just like that. As if all my love and maternal care meant absolutely nothing.
Meyer lemons are high on my list of savored items found for a fleeting time, which also includes forsythia, daffodils, rhubarb and of course, blood oranges. Meyer lemons are a slightly sweeter, thin-skinned version of their traditional lemon cousins. They are also believed to be a cross between a traditional lemon and a mandarin orange. In case you missed the featured splurge earlier this winter, be sure to check out the meyer lemon and dried cherry scones.
Well, I’m pleased to report that I’ve moved on from the tragic death of my Meyer lemon tree. I’ve since had much better luck – both of my children continue to grow despite my foibles and their own self-inflicted hunger strikes. Just don’t ask me to babysit your orchids.
mid-week update: 03.28.11
I’m thrilled that the “ingredient” photo from my very first Weekly Greens post has been selected as a finalist in the Washingtonian Magazine’s Foodie Photo Contest. Remember the tomatoes? If you liked them, please vote for them now! The polls are open until Thursday, March 31 at 12 noon ET. Thank you for your kind and generous support.