The orange tree is a small tree up to 10 m tall, with thorny shoots and evergreen leaves 4-10 cm long. The fruit of Citrus sinensis is called sweet orange to distinguish it from Citrus aurantium, l ""bitter orange. Orange blossom is the fragrant flower of the Citrus sinensis tree. The flowers usually open in a single spurt of white flowers in the spring and set orange fruit in the fall or winter next.
Citrus sinensis is believed to have its origins in China and has since been grown in virtually every country in the world in tropical and subtropical climates. Most of the current production comes from Florida, California and parts of the Mediterranean. Orange blossom is the state flower of Florida.
Orange blossom is an important element in the manufacture of perfumes. Traditionally associated with good fortune and reputed to be an aphrodisiac, the flower has been highly valued in bridal bouquets and flower garlands for weddings. Orange blossom petals can also be made into a delicately flavored orange blossom water (an alternative to rose water), common in French cuisine and Middle Eastern cuisine, used most often in desserts and pastries. In the United States, orange blossom water is used to make orange blossom scones and marshmallows. In Spain and the Middle East, fallen orange blossoms are dried and then infused to make a delicious herbal tea.
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