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Citrus juice has long been a go-to for a natural cleaning agent. But what about the peels?

A colleague’s daughter’s fellow student ran an experiment for the science fair last week: which citrus peel is the best stain remover? Theories on which would prove the winner pinged around our office for the days preceding.

Polls had grapefruit and lemon in a tie for first place.


– mark various surfaces (tile, wood, etc.) with a Sharpie

– rub with citrus peels, from lemon to lime to kumquat

– see which works best to remove the marks

And the winner is…

Tangerine and lemon!

Who knew?

There’s no word onĀ why these two citrus have Sharpie-smiting qualities, but it was only a middle school science fair. One experiment at a time.

Apparently my colleague’s husband (the father of the student’s friend) happened to have a tangerine handy that afternoon. He also happened to be sitting at a particularly grubby table. “Eh,” he thought. “Why not?” He gave the table a rub, and lo and behold, the tangerine peel smote the mystery mark lightning-quick.

Score one for the tangerine.

Anyone else have brilliant citrus ideas?





I saw this on the way to work this morning.

Simple concept, to be sure, but it was so lovely and so easy to implement that I just had to share.

Frugal, utilitarian, and elegant. So very Maine.


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