If you are in the lime growing business and you start being called "Mr Limes" then you know you're on to something.

That's the way it is with Anthony Williams, who with wife Allison started growing the fruit just over 13 years ago on their property in Havelock North.

Deciding to grow limes on their property could have been seen as slightly risky, as the fruit are vulnerable to frost, especially in the early stages.

As well, it was almost an after-thought as a landscaping contract they had going was cancelled and they were left with 60 lime trees which needed a home.

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Some they planted and in time they planted more - today they have pretty well doubled in number and they form the heart of St Andrews Limes.

Mr Williams discovered they had gone down the right path when a couple of years after getting the limes going he went down to the Farmer's Market with a few crates of them.

He described the response he received as "staggering" and "so positive".

They started with three products, two chutneys and a lime and garlic vinaigrette, and after coming up with a new product would take that to market and check to see if it had promise as well.

Like a well-tended lime tree things just grew and the product range expanded out to more than 15 which were sold through top-end delicatessens and retail outlets.

In season the limes also found their way out to bars.

They eventually set up their own juicing and peeling operation at Whakatu where the limes and lemons get peeled and juiced.

Mr Limes has certainly created something special, and that becomes clear when you taste things like saffron lime dressing or the lime and mustard seed dressing. The special three-jar gift packs say it all.

St Andrews Limes

St Andrews Rd, Havelock North

www.limes.co.nz

Ph: 877 4683