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  • Loquats Trees - Grafting new varieties - video

    I have several loquat trees. I love the tree and the exquisite taste of the fruit and already had lots of good local varieties.

    A few years ago I bought 8 Tanaka and 8 Algerie loquats grafted in quince. Unfortunately the Spanish nursery i bought them from messed up and send me a few Magdal loquats, mixed in, instead of what i requested.
    To be fair i gave these a few production years but this variety isn't as good as the others.

    So, when i could get my hands on a few scions of other recognized good varieties, like Buenet and Redonet, i decided to graft a few of my Magdal loquats with them. Here are the steps needed to change varieties in established loquat trees.

    https://youtu.be/sT_mEAPRn60

    Now, if only i could get my hands on some Rolhão II (wonderful old Portuguese variety) and Italiano I (the best Italian loquat variety) scions, i would be a happy man.

    A link to a very good description of some of these Loquat varieties (unfortunately its in Spanish - if someone wants something specific translated, let me know)
    http://www.ivia.gva.es/documents/161...0-88059eb3909f

    Its a shame that a great percentage of of the Loquat we are seeing in stores is the variety Golden Nugget (of Californian origin). Spain is a big producer of Loquat and in the last few years is changing a great percentage of their orchards from Algerie and Tanaka to Golden Nugget. That variety was selected as its much less prone to develop the brown skin spots (sun burn spots) that this fruit usually shows and that costumers apparently don't favor, preferring to buy the clear skin fruits.
    These spots don't affect in the slightest way the taste of the fruit (i find that they even enrich it), although they might reduce the shelf life of the product (these areas are the first ones to decay). On the other hand, that clear skin variety is almost completely tasteless compared to any of the other varieties usually cultivated.

    Sometimes, i have a few visitors and give them some loquats to taste. They initially say that they don't care much for this fruit (they are used to the bland, tasteless variety they find in the supermarkets). After they taste a few of the varieties i grow, they rediscover this fruit and are surprised at the complex taste - that mix of acidity and sweetness of the traditional varieties, is hard to beat.

    This only shows that we (the human species) are very funny as a society. We prefer looks over taste and the farmer industry gives us what we want. And after enough time has passed young people don't even know how those fruits used to taste, so everything is fine.
    Jaime - Zone 9b - Portugal - Whish list: Sofeno Claro, Paderne, Pardinho, Bournabat, Bouhouli, Thermalito, Unk. Pastiliére, Luv, Genovese Nero.

  • #2
    I haven’t ever had a loquat, but now I’m very curious! Thank you for working to preserve valuable varieties for future generations! Do they grow happily in pots?

    Comment


    • Jsacadura
      Jsacadura commented
      Editing a comment
      Yes they do, and can turn into beautiful ornamental plants. But to achieve any real production, they would have to be planted directly in the ground.

    • BrightGreenNurse
      BrightGreenNurse commented
      Editing a comment
      Jsacadura That was exactly the answer I was looking for, thank you!!!

  • #3
    Jaime, I am a big fan of loquats and picked up Argelino (Algerie) recently. It is considered a good variety but supposedly a few others are better: Vista White, Kanko, Novak and Ed’s Delight. Avri, from Israel is also highly regarded. Most likely these are all named seedlings.

    There is a variety called ‘Italy’ available in collections, reputedly very sweet with low acidity. but I wonder if it’s the same as the one you refer to as Italiano.

    Comment


    • Jsacadura
      Jsacadura commented
      Editing a comment
      I couldn't say if Italy is the same as Italiano I. Argelino is very good when fully ripe but it was selected mainly for its size, pulp thickness and small seeds. I have local loquats that have a more intensive loquat flavor but they lack the size, the thick pulp and have big seeds, so they are not commercial.

    • FigTex
      FigTex commented
      Editing a comment
      I have Italy, Kanko, and Macbeth. Italy and Kanko are both incredible! I can't recommend them enough. Unfortunately, our temps dipped down to 8 degrees this winter, which is low for central Texas. The trees still have their leaves and look great, but the little loquats are toast. I guess I'll be waiting another year for fruit.

  • #4
    Jaime, have you grown any from seeds and what were your results?
    Jennings, Southwest Louisiana, Zone 9a

    Comment


    • Wisner
      Wisner commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks for your answer JamesB.

    • Jsacadura
      Jsacadura commented
      Editing a comment
      I have several loquats that were grown from seedling and JamesB is right. Most will be too acidic (although with a very strong 'real' loquat flavor), take a long time to bear fruit and the fruit will be small. Nevertheless, there were lots of very good local seedlings all over Portugal that people used to replicate locally.Most of them appeared spontaneously and later were grafted or air layered to preserve the variety. Unfortunately, most nurseries now only sell Argelino or Tanaka, with the occasional rare, very good, non unidentified seedling mixed in.

    • Wisner
      Wisner commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks Jaime for the info. I am growing a seedling tree that a man gave me. Hopefully it will give some good fruit in a few years.

  • #5
    Nice nespera. I looked into finding/growing some of these after my Portuguese relatives talked about them. Bass was selling some seedlings. I was just thinking about this topic this morning. There is not much research on them (in English anyways) that I found. It seems like in Ohio zone 6a it won’t be possible, even in a hoop house to try and extend the growing season. I’m I right on this?
    NE Ohio, Zone 6a. Wishlist: Persistant Caprifig, Bombarral, Green Michurinska, De Tres Esplets, Malta Black, LSU Champagne/Tiger/O'Rourke

    Comment


    • Jsacadura
      Jsacadura commented
      Editing a comment
      I have a friend that went to Switzerland to work and likes Nêsperas so much that after a few years he took a plant with him. Every year he builds a shelter for the loquat and has managed to succeed in producing a few fruits. As i said the problem is that loquats flower in late fall, early winter and the fruit develops through the winter maturing in April/May, so it will be very difficult in a 6a zone, unless you have a greenhouse.

  • #6
    I've just found that Rolhão II and Italiano I are two varieties stored at a Spanish loquat germoplasm repository (link below) .

    Italiano - I (copied from the file on this variety on that website and translated with google)
    1. Vegetative characteristics
    Very vigorous variety, semi-open bearing and an average of 3 side shoots per central bud.
    Approximately 88.5% and 29% of the central and lateral shoots, respectively, they are fruitful. Very productive variety.
    Large leaves, with spaced teeth. Middle apex shape and section corrugated cross
    2. Flowering
    Full flowering in the third week of November (10 days before 'Algerie').
    Intermediate panicle of moderately abundant flowering (average of 160 flowers / panicle), yellowish white color and a curd of 6.11%.
    3. Characteristics of the fruit
    Full ripening in the first week of May (1 days before 'Algerie').
    Flattened fruit, rounded cross section, rounded peduncular area, cavity of open calyx and flat apex. Both the skin and the pulp are orange.
    Average weight of 51.38 g, average size of 45.15 mm and thickness of the pulp of 11.26 mm. Easy peeling and very good flavor.
    Soluble solids: 12.10 ºBrix. Acidity: 7.77 g / l ac. malic Firmness: 0.85 Kg / cm2
    Seeds of oval shape, average weight of 1.68 g and an average of 4 seeds per fruit.

    Rolhão II

    1. Vegetative characteristics
    Vigorous variety, open bearing and with a majority of 3 lateral buds per shoot central.
    100% of the central shoots are fruitful and 90% of the lateral shoots also they are. Very productive variety.
    Leaves of large size, with spaced teeth. Acute apex shape and section Transverse plane and curve.
    2. Flowering
    Full flowering in the second week of November (3 days after 'Algerie'). Conical panicle with abundant flowering (average of 201 flowers / panicle), white and a fruit set of 6.17%.
    3. Characteristics of the fruit
    Full ripening in the first week of May (3 days after 'Algerie').
    Oval fruit, slightly angular cross section, obtuse peduncular area, cavity of the open calyx and concave apex. Both the skin and the pulp are colored orange.
    Average weight of 69.30 g, average size of 46.06 mm and thickness of the pulp of 11.25 mm. Easy peeling and good flavor.
    No incidence of purple spot and mottled and very light tendency to cracked.
    Soluble solids: 9.32 º Brix. Acidity: 10.30 g / l ac. malic Firmness: 1.03 Kg / cm2 Seeds of elliptical shape, average weight of 2.61 g and between 3 and 4 seeds per fruit. Marbled tegument.

    Now i just have to find a way to charm them into sending me a few scions (which would be very difficult) as they only make them available to firms.
    Jaime - Zone 9b - Portugal - Whish list: Sofeno Claro, Paderne, Pardinho, Bournabat, Bouhouli, Thermalito, Unk. Pastiliére, Luv, Genovese Nero.

    Comment


    • #7
      It's a shame that i have to turn to another country when trying to obtain Portuguese varieties, as the local agricultural authorities that preserve and study Portuguese varieties, also don't make them available to the public.
      Here's one collection in the Agricultural Department in Algarve (link to the PDF, below EDIT - i really can't get the links working in this forum - i paste the following link, using the link tool provided, and what appears it's the main page of the website- here it is the full link - http://www.drapalg.min-agricultura.p...da_DRAPALG.pdf)

      It has several fruit species, and many (now) rare varietes of Loquat and Figs. All contacts to obtain cuttings failed. The reply is always the same - they are studying the varieties to see which ones have the best agronomic characteristics and only when the studies finish they will make them available to the nurseries and other firms, if they show interest in selling a few commercially.

      Curiously, a few years ago, during the Economic crisis our country went through, a few of these collections were lost because, without money, some were neglected or the land was reclaimed from lack of pay.
      If some of those varieties were in the hands of fruits enthusiasts they would have been preserved, but no, they were in the hands of the government specialists, so now they will have to try and find the original trees to collect more material, once again and, in some cases, the tree might not be there anymore.
      Last edited by Jsacadura; 12-29-2018, 11:55 PM.
      Jaime - Zone 9b - Portugal - Whish list: Sofeno Claro, Paderne, Pardinho, Bournabat, Bouhouli, Thermalito, Unk. Pastiliére, Luv, Genovese Nero.

      Comment


      • #8
        Thanks for all the info on these amazing cultivars! I've been interested in Rolhão II for several years and must now add Italiano - I to my wanted list along with Buenet and Redonet. What can you tell us about those last two?

        Comment


        • #9
          I love your videos, Jaime. They are informative and easy to follow. Thanks
          Deep in the heart of Texas
          zone 8b

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          • #10
            I just bought a Gold Nugget variety last year. I was going to look around for some scions of different varieties to graft. Where do you all get your scions from?
            -SAH Dad, gardener, fan of comedy, philosophy, and the deep dive on YouTube
            -Wish list: Craven's Craving, BM KK

            Comment


            • #11
              I too have what I think is a Gold Nugget. It came with the house and is big tree that is probably 20+ years old. I have successfully air layered it and created two more potted trees. I too am interested in locating some different varieties to graft. I found some scions at Fruit Wood Nursery but I am not sure what would be a good variety to try.
              Chowchilla CA
              Central California Zone 9A

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