Although native to South East Asia the Loquat has long been part of the tropical, subtropical and temperate backyard, offering a bounty of luscious sweet fruit to everyone and anyone who cared to harvest from this popular garden tree. It is not surprising that it is one of the few fruiting trees that have been listed for many decades as a recommended specimen for gardeners in warm climates, and those with sheltered gardens as far south as Melbourne.
Also referred to as the Japanese Medlar, Japanese Plum and Nispero, it is a relative of apples, pears, medlars and even the humble rose – belonging to the family Rosaceae.
The Loquat is a small evergreen tree to around 6m in height. With pruning it can be shaped to reduce the height of the tree and to make harvesting easier. In the garden, prune the lower limbs off to improve access beneath when mowing or tending plants positioned beneath its canopy.
1 cup water
3 cups sugar
20 grams fresh ginger, peeled and grated
(or 50g crystalised ginger)
6 cups of loquats (after preparing)
Wash fruit and remove seeds. Place seeds in a muslin bag.
Place fruit and bagged seed in water and bring to boil, simmer until fruit are tender.
Add sugar and ginger, remove bag of seed and boil for another 10 minutes, or until setting stage is reached.
Bottle in sterilised jars.