Locally known as ‘naspli’- a Maltese twist on the Italian word ‘nespoli’, these warm-coloured bundles of succulent sweetness ripen in April and May.
Loquat, indigenous to South East China and Japan, was probably introduced to the Maltese Islands in the middle of the 19th century and it was first planted in Buskett.
Malta’s warm springs provide the perfect climatic conditions for this evergreen tree to flourish. Its oval, rounded or pear-shaped fruits grow in abundant quantities, and some describe their taste as a cross between an apple and a pear.
Loquat fruits are most often eaten fresh but they also make a wonderful jam and great toppings on pies and crumbles.