Enjoy a delicious and nutritious breakfast by simply stepping into your backyard. The ruby red grapefruit is the most popular grapefruit under cultivation, and the sweetest fruit grows in Florida. Grapefruit thrives in areas with hot days and warm, humid nights. Take advantage of the fabulous Miami climate and grow ruby red grapefruit at home.
The leaves of the grapefruit tree are 3 to 6 inches long, glossy and evergreen. The twigs are sometimes studded with small, flexible thorns. Mature trees can grow between 15 and 20 feet tall. The flowers are small, white and sweetly scented. The trees bloom in the spring and the flowers appear in clusters, like grapes. The fruits are large, nearly round, and ripen from late October through May. The outer skin is pale yellow, blushed with pink. The flesh is pink to pale red, sectioned, nearly seedless, juicy and tart with a hint of sweetness. Grapefruit lasts longer on the tree than other citrus and continues to sweeten with time. Pick grapefruit just before use for best results.
Citrus trees love the sun. For maximum yields, plant your grapefruit in a bright location with room to accommodate the crown. Grapefruit will grow in almost any well-drained soil. Water every few days for the first weeks and then once weekly for three months or until the rainy season arrives. Once the tree is established, water only during periods of prolonged drought. Pruning is unnecessary except to remove rubbing or damaged branches. Ruby reds typically begin to bear fruit in the third season after planting.
Grapefruit is rich in vitamin C and other antioxidants and high in fiber. A diet including grapefruit has been shown to lower cholesterol levels. Eat ruby red grapefruit freshly halved, juiced alone or for use in smoothies, or sectioned and added to salads.