Big Jim Loquat Tree (Eriobotrya japonica ‘Big Jim’)

Big Jim Loquat Tree

Self-fruiting and resilient, the Big Jim Loquat Tree (Eriobotrya japonica ‘Big Jim’) is an amazing fruit, and lucky you – the Big Jim is the best of the best! It’s one of the tastiest and fleshiest Loquat varieties you will find!

Who’s Big Jim? Jim Neitzel was a visionary fruit grower and a founding board member of the California Rare Fruit Growers Organization. There’s a reason he named this variety after himself – it’s astounding! As a proponent of people growing their own fruits and veggies, Jim Neitzel developed many great sub-tropical varieties for backyard gardens!

Its fruit grows up to 2.5 inches in clusters of up to twelve, plenty for you and your neighbors! These yellow-orange fruits taste like citrus-flavored Apricots, are easy to peel with a deep yellow flesh and few brown seeds.

Planting and Application:

Loquat fruit in the early spring, ripening typically right after most citrus fruit is done, the Loquats offer a perfect bridge between the winter citrus and the wonderful summer fruits.

Loquat leaves are lush, deep-green and lance-shaped, and these evergreens look attractive throughout the year. They make great background shrubs or showy specimen plants!

  • Yellow-orange skin & easy to peel – or eat the skin for a sweet & chewy treat!
  • Yellow flesh, tart citrus-apricot flavor & few seeds
  • Juice keeps for up to 2 weeks in the fridge!
  • Great privacy hedge or specimen ornamental
  • If space is a concern, Big Jim is also very easy to Espalier.

Tips for Care:

Big Jim Loquats are sub-tropical, thriving in full sun, perfect for patios or decks. They do well in a wide variety of soil types and are drought-resistant once established. Unlike many other sub-tropicals, Big Jim is cold hardy down to 12 degrees!

In Zones 7-8, be prepared to cover your tree with a frost blanket when extended periods of cold are predicted.

  • Low water needs once established & full sun
  • It can easily be pruned and kept 8 feet high or as a multi-trunked tree or shrub-form
  • Roots are not invasive and readily grow in a container or planter
  • Bears fruit at about 3-4 years of age
  • Tough plants once established, requiring little care

Loquat fruit has many health benefits and is high in Vitamins A and C.

Big Jim Loquat Tree (Eriobotrya japonica ‘Big Jim’) Details

Common name Big Jim Loquat Tree
Botanical name Eriobotrya japonica 'Big Jim'
Plant type Evergreen
Hardiness zone 7-11
Growth rate Medium
Harvest time March - June
Height 15 - 20 ft.
Width 15 ft.
Sunlight Full Sun
Moisture Low once Established
Soil condition Widely Adaptable
Pollinator-friendly Yes
Pruning time After Fruiting
Flower color White
Leaf color Sub Tropical