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The tangerine (Citrus × tangerina) is an orange-colored citrus fruit which is a variety of the Mandarin orange (Citrus reticulata). Tangerines are smaller than most oranges, and are usually mucheasier to peel and to split into segments. The taste is often less sour, or tart, than that of an orange.

What can be considered by some to be a good tangerine will be firm to slightly soft, heavy forits size, and pebbly-skinned with no deep grooves, as well as orange in color. Peak tangerine season is short, lasting from October to April in the Northern Hemisphere. Tangerines are most commonlypeeled and eaten out of hand. The fresh fruit is also used in salads, desserts and main dishes. The peel is dried and used in Sichuan cuisine. Fresh tangerine juice and frozen juice concentrate arecommonly available in the United States. The number of seeds in each segment (carpel) varies greatly.

A popular alternative to tangerines are clementines, which are called seedless tangerines and arealso a variant of the mandarin orange.
Tangerines have been cultivated for over 3,000 years in China.[citation needed] They are also high in concentration in present day Burma. Tangerines have beenfound in many shapes and sizes, from as small as a small walnut, to larger than an average orange.
[edit] Varieties

Sunbursts are the most widely grown tangerine,[1] trailed by the honey tangerine(murcott as it's called in the industry),[2] and the fallglo.

One of the oldest and formerly most popular varieties is the Dancy tangerine, but it is no longer widely grown.[3] The Dancy was knownas the zipper-skin tangerine, and also as the kid-glove orange, for its loose, pliable peel.

The ponkan or Chinese honey tangerine is very popular around Melrose, Florida, where it was introducedfrom China by a missionary, Rev. Barrington, in 1883. It is easily peeled, much like a Satsuma mandarin, but has more flavor and grows true from the seeds. Growing tangerines from the seeds may take...
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