Eriobotrya japonica

Off-season flowering


Latin name:
Eriobotrya japonica.
Alternative names:
Chinese plum,
Japanese plum,
Japanese medlar.

Eriobotrya japonica is also called the Japanese medlar. It is an evergreen tree, growing up to 6-10 m in height, its twisted trunk is covered with brown bark, later turning black and rough. Crown rounded, twigs, flowers and fruits slightly pubescent. Large leathery serrated leaves with depressed veins and a short petiole have an elliptical-lanceolate shape, dark green on top, lighter on the reverse side, covered with a dark brownish down. In autumn and winter, yellowish-white flowers bloom at the ends of the branches of the current year, collected in inflorescences-panicles. In spring, fruits ripen, colored in orange and light -yellow tones. The flesh has a sweet or slightly sweet and sour taste. The core contains several large, hard seeds. There are many varieties: 'Success', 'Golden Bowl', 'Verbena', 'Maltese', 'Montreal', 'Bagheria', 'Red', 'Vanilla', 'Premier', 'Santa Rosalia', 'Tanaka'.


Japanese medlar is grown in gardens as a fruit (more often) or ornamental plant. Less often, it is cultivated in pots, mainly in large containers. Japanese medlar is planted on a permanent planting site in the fall or spring (if the winters are cold). These plants prefer deep and fertile, loamy soil, fertilized with organic substances in the amount of 1-2 kg per plant or full mineral fertilizer-10 g per plant. Potting substrate is made up on 2/3 of the fertile land, on 1/3 from peat, add a complex fertilizer (30 g per bucket) and a small amount of sand. In the period from April to August, liquid top dressing is carried out, mineral fertilizer is diluted in water for irrigation at 20-30 g per bucket. To stimulate fruit formation, Japanese medlar is pruned, and the crown is shaped like a vase by forming pruning. To increase the yield, remove the fruit branches along with the fruits, which are then removed from them.

Low temperatures can negatively affect flowering. Fruit maturation is optimal only in mild climates. For decorative specimens, it is enough to remove dry and damaged branches. When collecting fruits (from April to June), they are separated together with part of the peduncle so that they are stored longer. A coffee substitute is prepared from the seeds of this plant.


It is necessary during periods of drought, especially for young plants.


Transplanted into a new container, when the roots of the plant are no longer placed in the previous one, in the spring. If transplanting is not possible, you can limit yourself to replacing the surface layer of the earth.


An extremely simple method of propagation is to sow fresh seeds in spring in a seedbed. The next year, the resulting seedlings are planted in fresh air in the open ground. However, plants from seeds begin to bear fruit late - in about ten years. Therefore, especially for fruit varieties, grafting is preferable. In this case, fruiting begins as early as the 4th year.


These plants prefer a place in the open sun, but they are also suitable for partial shade.


Japanese medlar is resistant to fluctuations in air temperature.

Diseases and pests

Pests such as aphids and worms sometimes cause significant damage to the plant, sucking out nutrients. Bacterial burns lead to extensive drying, and the affected parts (and sometimes the entire plant) should be removed. This is a dangerous and highly contagious disease, and it must be reported to the local phytopathological service. Spotting (caused by the fungus Fusicladium eriobotryae) occurs on leaves (spots are first light, and then brown, necrotic) and on fruits (spots often acquire a soft consistency). Treatment with copper-containing fungicides is carried out. Called by various functions fungi root rot is especially active when the ground is excessively moist and poorly drained. Reduce watering, and if the plant doesn't recover, get rid of it.


Japanese medlar can be purchased in nurseries specializing in fruit crops, and in horticultural centers. Buy small seedlings, check the condition of the foliage.

Care summary

Cultivation medium difficulty
Watering only in dry conditions
Transplanting in spring
Appearance maintenance not required
Location in the open sun, as well as in partial shade
Temperature resistant to both low and high temperatures
Flowering time autumn-winter
Height up to 6 m


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