The loquat (Eriobotrya japonica) is a fruit tree in the family Rosaceae, indigenous to southeastern China. It was formerly thought to be closely related to the genus Mespilus, and is still sometimes known as the Japanese medlar.
Food features:It is an evergreen large shrub or small tree, with a rounded crown, short trunk and woolly new twigs. The tree can grow to 5–10 m tall, but is often smaller, about 3–4 m.The leaves are alternate, simple, 10–25 cm long, dark green, tough and leathery in texture, with a serrated margin, and densely velvety-hairy below with thick yellow-brown pubescence; the young leaves are also densely pubescent above, but this soon rubs off.
Place of origin:indigenous to southeastern China
Nutrition:The loquat is low in saturated fat and sodium, and is high in vitamin A, dietary fiber, potassium, and manganese.
Dietotherapy function:Loquat syrup is used in Chinese medicine for soothing the throat like a cough drop. The leaves, combined with other ingredients and known as pipa gao (pinyin: pípágāo; literally "loquat paste"), it acts as a demulcent and an expectorant, as well as to soothe the digestive and respiratory systems.