Long story short,

Is lemon peel thickness sign of the fruit age?

Long story: half-cutting lemons (this worth for oranges and other citruses, as well), I noticed younger fruits have thicker peel (the white spongy flesh between the exterior skin and the internal juicy pulp) than older fruits.

Thus the question is: is there any correlation between this thickness of lemon peel and the age of the fruit?

NB: I am aware of the fact that exists different varieties of lemon, thus the peel thickness would be a natural physical aspect of the fruit; the question above relies on the fact I am talking about two identical lemons.

2 Answers 2


Well, weird question but don't worry

I would say, scientifically, this would make perfect sense, liquid in the lemons will eventually evaporate, as they give off water to the environment they are stored in. Especially when you have your lemon storage in your refrigerator, they give off humidity to the low relative humidity in your fridge. This also happens with Oranges and generally almost all fruits. With lemons, this is especially visible in the white outer layer, as the lemon 'wants' to protect its content and its DNA (the seeds) and thus will probably give off liquid form the outer layers first (like when humans freeze in winter, it is the skin that suffers first in form of dry skin)

Long story short: I would definitely say that there is a certain correlation.

I hope this helps, Max


I would say that's not true unless you're talking about fruit aged well past their prime. Peel thickness is dependent on a lot of factors, the exact species of lemon, the soil quality, the tree's maturity, the season, the availability of water... Even fruit from the same tree can vary quite a bit in different times and circumstances.

But yes, if you take an innocent lemon and let it dry till it's turning to stone, if it doesn't mold first the peel will get progressively thinner and harder, till you have to cut if off to rescue the little remaining pulp. Thin but soft peel would be your hint that you're dealing with a young lemon that just happens to have thin peel. But lemons are so good for so many things, just use it before it gets to that stage.

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