Do Lemons Ripen After Being Picked? (EXPLAINED)

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Do Lemons Ripen After Being Picked

Lemons are a famous yellow fruit (when fully ripe) that are produced from small evergreen trees that belong to the Rutaceae family of flowering plants. The fruit originates in Asia, China, and India.

Lemons are a favorite fruit of those who enjoy sour citrus flavors and are often used as an ingredient in drinks (both non-alcoholic and alcoholic), as well as an ingredient in various food dishes including fish.

Lemons are an excellent source of soluble fiber and vitamin C. They may also reduce such serious risks as cancer and heart disease, as well as a number of lesser health issues.

Below, we discuss whether or not lemons continue to ripen after being picked and other related questions!

Do Lemons Ripen After Being Picked?

Most citrus fruits do not continue ripening after being picked. Lemon, however, is not a normal citrus fruit in that sense because it does continue to ripen after it is plucked from its tree. For that reason, lemons are sometimes picked early (in the fall, while fully green) and stored for future use or sale.

How Do You Ripen a Lemon?

The easiest way to ripen a lemon is to simply sit it on the kitchen counter, or in some other brightly lit location. If the lemon is fully green, it will begin yellowing within a handful of days. 

Make sure to avoid direct sunlight for your ripening lemons, or you will end up with far less juicy fruits when they do finally turn fully yellow.

How to Tell if a Lemon is Ripe?

Lemons are ripe when their exteriors begin to show yellow. Likewise, depending on the strain, when the fruits reach a size of around three inches or so in diameter, they are about ready to pluck. You will also notice the glossy tone that their skin takes on, a sign they are ripe and ready for picking.

Do Lemons Fall Off the Tree When Ripe?

Lemons do not necessarily fall off of their trees when they are ripe. They may cling to the branches for weeks, even months, in the right circumstances. That’s why you need to keep an eye on the fruit in the tree. Don’t expect to simply shake the branches like an apple tree and send fruit falling down.

Can I Leave Mature Lemons on the Tree?

Mature lemons can indeed be left on the tree. The catch is, if you wait too long, the fruit may become soft and rotten rather than simply stay fresh and waiting to be picked. Also, if you leave too much mature fruit in your trees, they may start producing less fruit.