Do Meyer Lemons Ripen Off The Tree

Meyer lemons are considered a hybrid of a lemon and an orange, having fragrant and sweet characteristics not found in regular lemons. They can often be found in grocery stores, farmer’s markets and home gardens around the world. The question arises – do Meyer lemons ripen off the tree? The answer is yes. Although Meyer lemons do not often ripen on the tree, they continue the process while they are off the tree.

Ripening of Meyer lemons is determined by a number of factors. The tree’s location, the season and the amount of sunlight, water and nutrients the lemon receives, all affect the ripening process. Additionally, temperature plays an important role in the ripening process. Meyer lemons are best kept at temperatures of 65 – 70 degrees Fahrenheit.  

When a Meyer lemon is ready to be harvested, it should have a bright yellow color with a slightly squashy texture. If the lemon appears more green than bright yellow, it is not at the best stage of ripeness. When ripe, lemons should be harvested before they grow too ripe, as they begin to lose their juiciness and flavor. The lemon should also be picked at a mature size, as a smaller lemon may not reach the full ripening stage.

Once picked, Meyer lemons should be kept in a cool, dry place and eaten within two weeks. It is not recommended to refrigerate Meyer lemons, as the cold temperatures will prevent them from continuing the ripening process. If it is necessary to refrigerate Meyer lemons, it is best to place them in a paper bag with a few holes in it to promote air flow.

Meyer lemons can also be left on a kitchen counter top to continue ripening. For optimal ripening, place them in a warm, sunny spot, such as a windowsill.  However, be aware that the warmer the temperature, the more quickly the Meyer lemons will ripen, so they need to be monitored and stored away if they become overly ripe. Meyer lemons can also be placed in a paper bag with an apple or banana to promote ripening.  The ethylene gas released by these fruits will speed up the ripening process.

Once picked and/or ripened, Meyer lemons can be used in a variety of dishes. Whether it be used as a sweetener in a sauce or a marinade, Meyer lemons add a zest to a meal or a drinks that is not found in regular lemons.  Their distinct flavor profile makes it easy to use them in a wide range of dishes. Meyer lemons can also be eaten as is for a snack or a spritz of lemon juice.


Meyer lemons have a complex flavor, sweet yet tart. They also have a much thinner skin than that of regular lemons, making them ideal for juicing, as they are easier to squeeze. As they ripen, they become more aromatic, sweet and with less acidity, providing a wonderful flavor pop.

Meyer lemons can be used in cooking as a substitute for regular lemons as they bring a delicate, sweet and tart flavor to dishes. In baking, Meyer lemons can also be used for cakes, muffins, curds and other desserts.  Their taste pairs well with other citrus fruits, like oranges, limes and grapefruits, as well as balsamic vinegar.

Meyer lemons are also often used in cocktails, providing a unique twist on the traditional drinks.  They make an excellent addition to tea and iced beverages, as well as vinaigrettes and marinades.  Their thin skins also make it easier to extract juice and zest, providing more dynamic and flavorful dishes.


There are many varieties of Meyer lemons available. Most have a thin, yellow skin and can range in size from two to five inches in diameter. Some of the most popular varieties are ‘Meyer Lemon Gems’, which are small, yellow and oval in shape; ‘Meyer Lemonate’, which has a yellow or orange skin with a tart-sweet taste; and ‘Meyer Lemon Royal’, which is yellow and slightly pear-shaped.

Meyer lemons are known for their sweetness, making them ideal for use in a variety of dishes. However, there are also many varieties of lemons available for use, ranging from the traditional sour lemons to the sweet and tart lemons of the Meyer variety.

In addition to the variety of flavors, there are also many different methods of harvesting Meyer lemons. For instance, they can be harvested while they are still on the tree, when they have just begun to ripen and turn yellow. This method allows the farmer to pick the fruit before they have had the time to fully ripen and is ideal for uses such as juicing and adding flavor to dishes.

The other commonly used method of harvesting Meyer lemons is to allow them to ripen completely before picking. This method can be useful for those who want to use the fruit for marinating or for infusing their foods with the zest of the Meyer lemon. This is the method most commonly found in groceries stores, as it produces a fruit that is ready to be used immediately.


Meyer lemons are a citric fruit, making them a powerful source of Vitamin C. Along with vitamin C, lemons also provide essential minerals such as potassium and magnesium, as well as fiber. Lemons are also known to aid in digestion, boost the immune system, improve skin health and reduce inflammation.   

Meyer lemons contain high levels of antioxidants, which can help fight against free radicals, helping to reduce the risk of diseases and illnesses. Lemons are also natural fat-burners, as they can help to increase metabolism and burn fat. Additionally, lemons are a great source of electrolytes, which helps to keep the body hydrated and balances the body’s fluid levels.

When buying Meyer lemons, make sure to buy organic or unsprayed lemons with no wax coating. Lemons with wax coating often contain high levels of pesticides and other chemicals that can be harmful to your health.  Before use, make sure to rinse them off with water before juicing, eating or using as a topping on food.   


Meyer lemons are versatile fruits with many uses. They are often used in salads, sauces and marinades, smoothies and cocktails, as well as desserts. Lemons can also be used as a natural disinfectant, as well as a cleaner for both home and garden.  The juice of Meyer lemons can be frozen and used for later use in cooking or drinks.

Meyer lemons can also be used for a variety of health benefits. As mentioned, lemons contain higher levels of vitamin C, which helps to provide immunity against colds, flus and other illnesses.  Lemon juice can also be used as a topical solution for skin care, as the citric acid can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, age spots and scars. 

Meyer lemons can also be used in aromatherapy as an uplifting scent.  The essential oils found in lemons can be used in diffusers, as well as in oil warmers and candles to refresh the home. Lemons can also be used as a linen spray and room freshener by combining the juice of half a lemon with water and spraying around the room.  The scent of Meyer lemons has been known to help reduce stress and anxiety.


Once harvested, Meyer lemons should be kept in a cool, dry place, preferably in a bowl or on a countertop, away from direct sunlight. Storing in a refrigerator can prevent ripening and cause mold, so it is best to avoid refrigerating Meyer lemons.  Lemons should be kept away from other fruits and vegetables, as the ethylene gas released by the other produce can cause the lemons to ripen too quickly.   

If it is necessary to store Meyer lemons for an extended period of time, they can be frozen while still whole. This will not only preserve the flavor, but will also extend the shelf life of the lemons. Meyer lemons can also be used to make a syrup or jam, which can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a month.  

Meyer lemons can also be preserved in sugar syrup. The syrup helps to quickly break down the pectin in the lemons, locking in the freshness. This syrup can be made and stored in the refrigerator, and Meyer lemons can be added to the syrup as and when needed.   

Meyer lemons can also be dried or candied for long-term storage.  By drying or candying, the shelf-life of the lemons can be extended, making them ideal for use in the winter months when fresh Meyer lemons may not be available. Candied Meyer lemons can also be used as a decorative garnish for holiday decor or cocktails. 

Gordon Wesson is an environmentalist and author who lives in the Pacific Northwest. He has been writing for many years about topics related to trees, the environment, and sustainability. In particular, he is passionate about educating people on the importance of living in harmony with the environment and preserving natural spaces. He often speaks at conferences and events around the country to share his knowledge with others. His dedication to protecting our planet makes him one of the leading voices in his field today.

Leave a Comment