Has anyone ver grown a Loquat?

meyermike_1micha(5)January 11, 2010

I was wondering if you ever had experiences with a Loquat?

Do they flower profusely, and are they very fragrant?

Are they easy to grow in a container?

How do they compare to let us say a lemon meyer or other frequent flowerer..?

Are they easy to winter indoors and summer outdoors if one is good at growing citrus this way?

Thanks so much.

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

You might get more information about this plant in the container forum, rather than the Citrus Forum, Mike. I'm just saying.....(Loquat is in the Rosaceae family.)

Anyhow, loquat can readily be grown in a container, but won't adapt readily to the indoor winter vacation that will be required in your location.

A happy loquat will flower profusely, but the flowers are small...not particularly attractive, in my opinion. They are arranged in clusters which can sometimes be hidden by the very large leaves. Yes, they are fragrant.

And I have never seen flowers that are more attractive to BEES and every other pollinating insect on the planet! I remember parking in a large lot on Hilton Head one crisp winter morning and hearing something that I couldn't quite identify. Not seeing anything, I went about my business.

On my way back to the car, I kept hearing that odd buzzing noise and decided to 'follow my ears' to the source. All of the loquats were blooming in that parking lot and were covered, completely covered with bees. At that time of year, not much else is available to bees and they were less than happy about all of the competition!

Loquats will need full sun in order to produce a heavy load of flowers and fruit, but will perform under lesser conditions. Since they flower and begin fruit production in the fall-spring, they cannot be exposed to temperatures below about 25 or those plant parts will be damaged or killed. The plant itself, can withstand much colder temps (somewhere around 10, or thereabouts), if fully established in the ground. Container grown plants, of course, should be considered much less hardy.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 11:30AM
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Your offering is all I needed to hear. Thankyou so much. I can make an informed descision based on what you said..

When you mentioned about Hilton Head, you reminded me of the Hilton Head I stayed at in South Carolina to see my brother graduate in November from boot camp in the Marines..Funny thing is, that there was nothing sweet smelling nor a one flower to had on any plants there. Just a bunch of moss hanging from trees! Boring!!!!!lol
I am glad those bees were after that tree and not you!!

By the way, all my plants are still pest free because of ALL the help you have givin here and at many other threads..You are as gold to all my plants, and they will never ever stop appreciating all the heartache you have spared them and I.

How are you holding up to the cold there? You must be going out of your mind. Have you lost any plants? I hope your plants are safe, and that you are doing well.

Again, thankyou for your offering!


    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 12:19PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Mike, your brother must have been at Parris Island, in Beaufort. I agree, there's isn't much to offer, horticulturally speaking, on that property. Just hundreds-year old Live Oaks, and ancient azaleas, magnolias, and camellias. I recall lots of very old hollies all over the place, too. Not much blooming in that location at that time of year, though.

Did you get to explore Beaufort at all?

That parking lot I was telling you about had loquats as the primary plant; there were dozens of them. It was a favorite landscape ornamental, due to it's large leaves, fragrance, and colorful fruit. I'll bet you that Parris Island had lots of them, you just didn't notice.

Yes, this extended period of cold has been a real pain. The part of Alabama I live in is not a semi-tropical climate, however. We're used to teens, a little snow and ice. But not for days and days on end, that's for sure. And not dotted with single digit temperatures!

The only plant I've been eying with some worry is the tea olive planted not too far from our kitchen window. It was given to us by a neighbor as a small one gallon plant about three years ago. It's now about seven feet tall! I wasn't real positive about how it would do in our windy, zone 7a location, but it's never blinked. We'll see how it looks in a few weeks.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 12:44PM
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I had a large (12ft) loquat in the ground when I lived in San Jose Ca.

At least in the ground, it was very easy to grow. In 10 years, I don't think I ever fertilized it. Only grew from the winter rains too.

It is a rather ugly tree. Dull leaves and bark. Flowers and fruits continuously. Although as I recall, most heavily during the spring and summer. Flowers are not overly fragrant either. Certainly, not when compared to a lemon.

The loquat berries make a very fine fruit jam. If anyone is interested, I'll dig out my recipe book.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 1:10PM
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My goodness.....I never realized it got that cold where you live. Ouch..I suppose the advantage to being there is that spring comes alot earlier for you there than for us..

I love tea olive trees Rhizzo! I myself have 2 in my plant room. One about 3 feet high and the other fairly new, aquired at a nursery over the weekend. They are soooo fragrant when givin the right conditions..

I can't believe that you have been in that area! Awsome..I have so many fond memories from there..Every tree was bare then though, so that is why I probably never noticed..But boy, was there a TON of moss..Oh ya, the only thing green at that time were there hardy palms lining the highways and byways..

It must be a whole different world there once spring rolls in, especially surrounded with all that ocean. I would of loved to see loguats in bloom...

I love Beaufort..I went to the Good Will store, and got some deals, and searched out all their local nurseries since there was not much to do in the cold cloudy damp weather at the time. The food was good, and they had a nice McDonalds...lol
I stayed at the Country Inn Suites.

God bless you and keep you and your plants safe Rhizzo.

At least the buggies don't like them temps ha..lol

I wonder if you gorw plumeria? When you get a chance, e-mail me privatetly, for I have something to send you come spring..


    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 1:16PM
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Thanks Kieth!

I think I am going to pass on one of these, since I was looking for something just as potent in fragrance as my citrus and olive tree...Think I will plant a few of these if I move south since they thrive outdoors!

It must make some awsome jam!


    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 1:23PM
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Mike, I have a few loquats. They are EASY and fast from seed. I have one that is about six feet tall, that I am training as an espalier against the home. It's been in the ground for several years. Evergreen, but does have some minor leaf burn after the winter.--So far, it has not flowered but it will--eventually (eternally the optimist here). Only one is in the ground (survived a minimum of 4 F. last winter) the others (all seed grown) are maintained in containers and winter in the garage with the citrus. You can overwinter them as containerized plants (they make TERRIFIC containerized plants)--AS LONG AS YOU KEEP THEM VERY COOL. I keep mine in the 40's-50's range in January and February. Good luck!

    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 5:56PM
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Thankyou Dave!

You wouldn't believe, actually you would, how beautiful my citrus have been doing in a cool humid room, with NO ADDED lighting! Now a leaf loss yet, and no MITES to be seen..YES!

They are not actively growing, but they are flowering and seem ver very happy. Like you said, I just make sure the soil is DRY before I even water.

Thanks for your ideas last summer, and for the info on this topic..:-)


    Bookmark   January 11, 2010 at 6:46PM
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I've had the grafted Big Jim loquat for four years and it still hasn't produced any fruit. Do I need to plant another loquat nearby to help produce fruits? This past winter we had a hard freeze that lasted about 2-3 days (about 30 degrees I think) could that have something to do with it? Or do I need to plant another loquat tree nearby? Any help would be appreciated, thankyou.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2010 at 1:00PM
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