Eriobotrya japonica (MALACEAE) Loquat

Weeds to Whack

A cold sensitive but otherwise hardy tree often grown in Brisbane backyards for the tart fruit. Has escaped into bushland and has become a vigorous weed. Not usually forming thickets, occasional plants come up well spaced apart, spread by birds. It is a native of East Asia (China and Japan). Branches are rusty-hairy. The tree grows to about 20 m (medium to large) and forms a rounded shape with upward pointing branches.

Photo: Robert Whyte

Leaves and Fruit

Large leaves to 25 cm with coarse veins.

Photo: Robert Whyte

Flowers

Furry-looking flowers in autumn with the fruit maturing the following spring. Flowers are fragrant. Pollinated by honey bees.
Photo: Robert Whyte

Flowers Close-up

Loquat likes full sun but will tolerate shade. Needs plenty of water when young but becomes somewhat drought tolerant. Needs good drainage. Will tolerate alkaline soil. It has become a weed of bushland after being spread by birds from gardens.

Photo: Robert Whyte