It’s an exciting time here in the Valley of the Sun when fruit trees are starting to produce fruit.
I love it because we have coworkers who bring in grapefruits, lemons, limes and oranges.
The fruit that my friend Charles Smith brings into work is amazing, some of the largest lemons I have ever seen! Normal lemons weigh about a half-pound. His lemons weigh almost 5 pounds!
[SPECIAL SECTION: Weather blog]
Here’s the crazy story. This was a normal lemon tree until the famous hail storm that hit Phoenix in October 2010. The same hail storm that caused $3 billion in damages in the Valley. More than 160,000 homes were damaged including Smith's lemon tree.
After the storm, he thought his tree was a goner. There were hardly any leaves or branches left, and the fruit was gone. He kept what was left of the tree in place and the next year the most amazing thing happened – the lemons were HUGE! He had only three lemons, but his tree was coming back.
Well, now, he has around 50 lemons on that tree and about 15 of them are jumbo sized. I did some research and found out that the largest lemons are known as ponderosa lemons, but these lemons weigh 1 to 2 pounds – not 4 to 5 pounds.
Next year, we are going for the world record. The world's heaviest lemon weighed 11.9 lbs. It was grown in Israel by a farmer named Aharon Shemoel.
Help us out with your ideas. We are thinking of taking most of the fruit off the tree and leaving about four to five bigger lemons. That way, the lemons left would get most of the nutrients and grow even bigger. Stay tuned, Smith's lemon tree could put Phoenix on the map once again!
Copyright 2018 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.