Money Tree

Good Organic Gardening|July - August 2020

Money Tree
A symbol of wealth in China, the golden loquat is rich in vitamins, minerals and especially sugar
Jennifer Stackhouse

Loquat label

Common name: Loquat

Botanical name: Eriobotrya japonica

Family: Rosaceae (rose family)

Aspect & soil: Full sun to part shade; well-drained soil

Best climate: All

Habit: Evergreen tree

Propagation: Grafting; cutting; seed

Difficulty: Easy

I have a confession to make. I had a loquat tree growing in my garden and we chopped it down. It was thriving but unfortunately it was growing in the wrong place — smack in the middle of the vegetable garden — and had never flowered or fruited.

I still feel bad and, given it’s a symbol of wealth, this may well have had serious consequences for my financial wellbeing.

Very handsome trees that can be grown as large shrubs, loquats are often seen in old, overgrown gardens. They stand out in late winter or spring when they are laden with golden yellow fruit.

In some subtropical regions, selfsown trees can pop up and the loquat is considered an environmental weed in parts of Queensland and northern New South Wales.

The trees are normally 3–4m high in gardens but can reach 5–10m high. They are evergreen with large dark-green heavily veined leaves that have a pleated look. The underside of the leaf is brown with downy hairs. The new shoots can also be downy, as is the fruit.

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July - August 2020