How to Grow Loquat Trees

Overview

The loquat (Eriobotrya japonica) grows as a small evergreen tree or shrub. It rarely exceeds 30 feet in height and normally averages only 10 feet. Large clusters of 1- to 2-inch fruits grow in profusion. A few cultivars offer self-pollination, but others require a pollinator planted close by. Pollination occurs from bees. The tree can withstand temperatures down to 10 degrees F before death. Fruit is destroyed if the temperature falls to 27 degrees F.

Step 1

Choose a planting location with full sunlight for maximum fruit production. It will tolerate partial shade but fruit production will be reduced. The loquat prefers well-draining soil that is slightly acidic with a pH 5.5 to 6.5. Sandy loam is ideal but the tree will tolerate a wide variety of soils.

Step 2

Mix aged manure and peat moss into the soil when planting the loquat. Abundant organic material is appreciated by the tree.

Step 3

Water the loquat frequently. The tree prefers moist soil during fruit production but will tolerate drought at other times.

Step 4

Fertilize the tree three times per year in the spring, summer and fall using a 6-6-6 general purpose fertilizer. Apply 1 pound per tree. Water the fertilizer into the soil completely.

Step 5

Prune the loquat tree after fruit harvest. Remove any branches that criss-cross. Remove the tips of the branches to encourage branching.

Step 6

Harvest loquats when fully ripe. Loquats do not ripen once removed from the tree and unripe fruit is exceedingly acidic to the taste.

Things You'll Need

  • General purpose 6-6-6 fertilizer

References

  • California Rare Fruit Growers: Loquats
  • Texas A & M University: Loquats
  • University of Florida: Loquat Growing in the Florida Home Landscape
  • Purdue University: Loquats

Who Can Help

  • BBC: The Loquat
Keywords: loquat care, planting loquat, loquat information

About this Author

Kimberly Sharpe is a freelance writer with a diverse background. She has worked as a Web writer for the past four years. She writes extensively for Associated Content where she is both a featured home improvement contributor (with special emphasis on gardening) and a parenting contributor. She also writes for Helium. She has worked professionally in the animal care and gardening fields.