Eriobotrya japonica


Family: Rosaceae

Origin: Asia

Loquat tree in flower.
Can grow into a large tree and produce large quantities of yellow fruit. Leaves are large and flowers form at the tips of new growth.
Photo credit: Jonathan Boow

Regional Pest Management Plan (RPMP) status

  • Whole region — Sustained control
  • Hauraki Gulf Controlled Area Notice pest

View more about the RPMP statuses

General description

Evergreen tree < 8 m tall. Leaves are < 35 x 10 cm, thick, leathery, wrinkled and serrated, with glossy dark green tops and hairy grey/brown undersides. Flowers are white and borne in inflorescences in April – November. Fruit is yellow-skinned and ripens in September – December.

What you need to know

To help protect our environment, from 1 September 2022, you:

  • will not be allowed to breed, distribute, release or sell loquat within the Auckland region.
  • will not be allowed to plant loquat within the Auckland region, unless you are transferring an existing plant on your land to another location within the boundaries of the same property.
  • must destroy any loquat on land that you occupy if it has been planted in breach of the above rules and you are directed to do so by an authorised person.


Forest, shrublands, coastal slopes, roadsides, wastelands, plantations, gardens.


Seeds dispersed by birds. Human-mediated dispersal through deliberate plantings.

Impact on environment

Can invade intact canopy native vegetation and has the potential to dominate the mid-tier canopy.


Site Management

Follow up treated areas 3 times per year. Encourage natural regeneration of native plants or replant treated areas where possible after 2-3 treatments to establish dense ground cover and minimise reinvasion.

Recommended approaches

Physical control

Method: Dig out. Ringbark and leave to die standing if safe to do so.

Plant parts requiring disposal: Seeds.

Disposal options: Remove to greenwaste or landfill if practical.


Biocontrol is currently not available for this species.

Community agrichemical control recommendations

Certified Handler/Experienced agrichemical user: Foliar spray seedlings with 5g metsulfuron-methyl per 10L of water and 20ml penetrant.

Safety notes

Large trees must not be ringbarked that are closer than 1.5 times the height of the tree from paths, walkways and property.

Trees over 4 metres in height should be removed by a qualified arborist.

Caution: When using any herbicide or pesticide please read the label thoroughly to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

Young Loquat tree.
A home orchard favourite, most NZ gardens planted loquats. Produce tangy yellow berries in summer with large seeds.
Photo credit: Jonathan Boow
Loquat fruit ripening.
Birds are attracted to the mature fruit and can carry the seeds to new locations. Fruit has been used in baking and preserves.
Photo credit: Jonathan Boow