Shoppers usually stop in their tracks, jaws hanging down, the first time they see a Buddha's Hand citron, which looks like a cross between a lemon and a squid. Its ancestor, the ordinary citron, is one of the three original species of citrus and looks like a large, lumpy lemon; in the Buddha's Hand, the fruit splits at the end opposite the stem into segments that look somewhat like human fingers - whence the fruit's other name, fingered citron. This prodigy is a genetic mutation that arose many centuries ago somewhere in the citron's homeland, southwestern China and northeastern India. (Occasionally similar-looking fruits will develop on a normal lemon tree, but these are caused by mite damage to the buds.) Read more here in David Karp's weekly Market Watch report.
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Photo: David Karp / For the Times