Botanical Name: Eriobotrya japonica
Common Name: Loquat Trees
Loquat (Eriobotrya japonica) is large leafed evergreen and moderately sized tree. Color of its edible fruit is orange-yellow. The dense, rounded, dark green canopy of Loquat is decorated in USDA hardiness zones 8b through 11 in late winter and spring with clusters of apricot yellow, pear-shaped, edible furry fruits. Fruit rarely sets further north. Loquat is a rapidly-growing evergreen tree and can reach 25 to 30 feet in height in the shade but is frequently seen 15 feet tall with a 15 to 25-foot-spread in a sunny location. The 10 to 12-inch-long leaves are rusty-colored beneath and have a coarse texture. Fragrant clusters of creamy white flowers are produced in fall, followed by the delicious, brightly colored, winter fruit. Its neat habit and compact growth make Loquat an ideal
specimen or patio shade tree, and it can be used as a residential street tree or median strip tree in areas where
overhead space is limited. But an adequate clear trunk needs to be developed early in the life of the tree to provide
for vehicle clearance. Branches will have to be pruned to grow up, as they tend to droop with time under the weight of the developing branch. It is not suited for planting next to the street if trucks pass close to the tree since adequate clearance is not possible but is successful in wide median strips. It also blends well into informal shrubbery borders and the fruit is attractive to wildlife. It espaliers well against a sunny wall, and makes a good screen due to its dense canopy. Sprouts along the trunk can be a maintenance nuisance. Providing best fruit and form when grown in full sun, Loquat can tolerate partial shade and a variety of well-drained soils. It grows well on soils with a high pH and maintains the characteristic dark green foliage. Clay soil is acceptable as long as there is sufficient slope to allow surface water to run away from the root system.