An ugli fruit is a citrus fruit created by hybridizing a grapefruit (or pomelo according to some sources) and a tangerine, and is sometimes called uniq fruit or unique fruit. Its species is Citrus reticulata x Citrus paradisi.
Native to Jamaica, the fruit was first bred in Brown's Town in 1914. It got its name from the unsightly appearance of its rough, wrinkled, greenish-yellow skin, wrapped loosely around the orange pulpy citrus inside. An ugli fruit is slightly smaller than a grapefruit and has fewer seeds. It tends towards the sweet side of the tangerine rather than the bitter side of its grapefruit lineage, with a fragrant skin. The fruit is seasonal from December to April. It is distributed in the USA, UK and Europe between November and April, and is on occasion available from July to September.
Americans pronounce the name "ugly," but in Jamaica, where it is grown, its name is pronounced /ˈhu.ɡli/.
The fruit is also described by the distributor as an exotic tangelo. UGLI® is a registered trademark of Cabel Hall Citrus Ltd., used as the trade name for the exotic tangelo from Jamaica. As such, it might not be considered strictly accurate to refer to the variety itself as "ugli fruit". This variety of tangelo is believed to be a hybrid of tangerine, Seville orange and grapefruit. It was discovered growing wild in Jamaica in 1924 by a family of brothers named Sharp. The founders bred over the original scion material and eliminated nearly all the seeds from the fruit and spines from the branches.