Lime fruits is one of the most common foods that we consume without knowing it.
This is because instead of biting down on them (which only a brave hungry man would do), they are used as ingredients to add a touch of sourness in various delicious dishes and fancy beverages.
While lime fruits can grow on large and small lime trees, for harvesting purposes, they are usually grown as small trees for easier management.
Lime in Chinese culture
During the ancient times of emperors and warlords, annual tribute gifts included mandarin oranges were sent to the capital as a mark of respect and acknowledgement of the rulers.
As these cargo has to travel a long way from as far south as Guangzhou, the time these foodstuff reached the capital, most if not all of the oranges went bad.
As oranges are symbolic of wealth, rotten oranges is really not something you want to present to the emperor.
Therefore, fruits were transported in the form of potted plants so that they ripen by the time they reach the capital for presentation.
As the miniature lime plant was easily portable, and the lime fruit would turn bright yellow/orange when ripe, it became an accepted alternative to the mandarin orange.
It is after all a citrus fruit just like the orange.
This practice slowly became a culture in customary practices, especially during festivities like CNY.
These days, it’s not uncommon to find people sending lime trees as Chinese New Year gifts, especially to businesses, as it is a symbol of wealth luck.
On top of that, gifting someone a tree do appear more generous than just sending oranges.
Lime tree and feng shui
In feng shui, the use of lime is with the tree itself. Seldom would a practitioner display just the lime fruits.
They are most often fashioned as gifts for the receiver to keep at home, or as accessories such as pendants and personal amulets to carry around.
As display items, lime trees are usually manufactured with bright hanging fruits that end with the number 8. The most common number is 8, 18 and 108.
When this is the case, the placement of such a lime tree inevitably is meant for the wealth sector where the white star 8 resides as a water star.
When you have a live plant, it is considered extremely auspicious to pick the fruits to use as ingredients for cooking at home.