Loquat Eriobotrya japonica
The loquat tree has been in cultivation for thousands of years. The trees are found growing in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and parts of Africa. These trees are also called Nispero de Japon in Spanish or just Nispero. Sapodilla is also called Nispero and that causes much confusion. Sapodilla is completely different and also called Chiku.
Loquat trees arrived in the United States in the late 1880's. One of the best places in the U.S.A to grow them is right here in Florida. Our sub tropical climate is excellent for growing loquat trees. Loquat fruit is becoming more popular than ever. Be sure to purchase grafted trees or be prepared to own a pretty ornamental that may or may not provide quality fruit for up to eight years.
Many improved varieties are now available and the arrival of people to Florida from many parts of the world is fueling increased demand. Several improved varieties include Yehuda, Bradenton, Vista White, Champagne and others.
Eating loquats can be addictive. The sweet tangy flavor is so delicious. I bet you can't eat just one!
More details on growing and harvesting loquat trees coming soon.
Pepe's Tip: The best fruit is the fall season harvest. The cooler weather and lower humidity produces one fine crop of loquats! Many of our trees are fruiting from mid February to March.