Eriobotrya Lindl.
Trans.Linn.Soc.London p96 (1821)

Name Status: Current
Browse to the list of specimens for Eriobotrya Lindl.

Scientific Description
Amanda Spooner, Thursday 8 September 2016

Common name. Loquat. Family Rosaceae.

Habit and leaf form. Trees, or shrubs; evergreen. Plants unarmed. Leaves cauline. Plants with neither basal nor terminal concentrations of leaves; to 1–10 m high. Leptocaul. Mesophytic. Not heterophyllous. Leaves medium-sized, or large; not fasciculate; alternate; spiral; not decurrent on the stems; leathery; not imbricate; petiolate, or subsessile. Petioles wingless. Leaves non-sheathing; simple; epulvinate. Leaf blades entire; flat; obovate, or oblong, or elliptic, or trullate; ca. 24–30 -nerved; pinnately veined; cross-venulate; attenuate at the base. Mature leaf blades adaxially glabrous, or woolly; abaxially glabrous, or pubescent, or woolly. Leaves with stipules. Stipules intrapetiolar; free of the petiole; free of one another; leafy. Leaf blade margins serrate, or dentate; prickly, or not prickly; flat. Vegetative buds scaly. Leaves without a persistent basal meristem. Leaf anatomy. Hairs present, or absent; glandular hairs absent. Stem anatomy. Secondary thickening developing from a conventional cambial ring.

Reproductive type, pollination. Fertile flowers hermaphrodite. Unisexual flowers absent. Plants hermaphrodite. Plants not viviparous; homostylous. Entomophilous; via hymenoptera, or via diptera.

Inflorescence and flower features. Flowers aggregated in ‘inflorescences’. Inflorescence many-flowered. Flowers not in pairs subtended by a common bract; in panicles, or in racemes (compound). Inflorescences compound. The terminal inflorescence unit racemose. Inflorescences terminal; ascending. Flowers pedicellate; ebracteate; ebracteolate; small, or medium-sized; regular; 5 merous. Floral receptacle not markedly hollowed. Free hypanthium absent. Perianth with distinct calyx and corolla; 10; 2 -whorled; isomerous. Calyx present; 5; 1 -whorled; gamosepalous; toothed. Calyx lobes markedly shorter than the tube. Calyx segments entire. Calyx erect, or spreading; hairy; exceeded by the corolla; urceolate; regular; non-fleshy; persistent. Calyx lobes triangular. Corolla present; 5; 1 -whorled; polypetalous; imbricate, or contorted; regular; plain; white; deciduous. Petals ovate, or obovate, or orbicular; clawed; not hooded; not navicular. Corolla members entire (emarginate or notched). Androecium present. Androecial members definite in number. Androecium 15–100. Androecial members free of the perianth; all equal; free of one another. Stamens 15–100; attached on the rim of the hypanthium; all more or less similar in shape; triplostemonous, or polystemonous; both opposite and alternating with the corolla members; inflexed in bud; filantherous. Filaments not geniculate; filiform. Anthers all alike; dorsifixed; versatile; dehiscing via longitudinal slits; tetrasporangiate. Gynoecium 2–5 carpelled. The pistil 2–5 celled. Carpels reduced in number relative to the perianth, or isomerous with the perianth. Gynoecium syncarpous; synovarious; inferior. Ovary plurilocular; 2–5 locular. Ovary summit hairy, the hairs not confined to radiating bands. Gynoecium stylate. Styles 2–5; partially joined; simple; attenuate from the ovary; apical; about as long as the ovary at anthesis; not becoming exserted; deciduous; hairy (villous). Stigmas 2–5; 1 - lobed; capitate. Placentation axile. Ovules 2 per locule; pendulous; non-arillate; anatropous.

Fruit and seed features. Fruit 30–60 mm long; falling from the plant before the next growing season; fleshy; yellow, or orange, or red; hairy (in Western Australia), or not hairy; indehiscent; a drupe (pome); 2–5 celled; 2–5 locular. Endocarp not ribbed. Dispersal unit the fruit. Dispersal by animals. Fruit 1–4 seeded. Seeds 0–1 per locule. Seeds non-endospermic; compressed, or not compressed (sometimes flattened on one side); medium sized, or large. Cotyledons 2. Testa hard (membraneous, firm); smooth.

Geography, cytology, number of species. World distribution: from the Himalayas throughout continental south-east Asia to Japan and Western Malesia. Adventive. Australian states and territories: Western Australia, or Queensland, or New South Wales, or Victoria, or Australian Capital Territory. South-West Botanical Province. X=17. A genus of ca. 26 species; 1 species in Western Australia; Eriobotrya japonica (Thunb.) Lindl.

Economic uses, etc. Edible fruit eaten raw or used in making jams.

Etymology. From the Greek erion "wool" and botrys "cluster" referring to the clustered, woolly panicles.