Loquats Important to Honeybees

Jan 18, 2019

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. I was outside cutting magnolia to make a Christmas wreath and stopped to admire the flowers on one of my loquat trees. Loquat has a melodious scientific name, Eriobotrya japonica, and is sometimes called Japanese plum. Right now, this small, evergreen tree with handsome, gray green leaves with pubescent backs is in flower. Each branch ends with a large creamy white inflorescence. And buzzing audibly were honeybees galore working the hundreds of small individual blooms. Here is another plant which at the end of December is serving as an important food source for European honeybees when they’re out foraging on warm winter days. In Charleston and Beaufort, with milder winters, the flowers usually set masses of inch and a half sized orange fruits that make a jelly delicious to serve with game, ooh, but they can make a mess on sidewalks.