Thursday, November 06, 2008

Profumo di Nespole



At the moment the garden is a buzz with bees concentrated on the Nespoli or loquat tree in full flower. The creamy white flowers, clustered in posies inundate the terrace with a heady sweet fragrance. Offerings of nectar to the bees are raised on furry erect twigs. Broad dark leaves crackle underfoot, the tree shedding all year long like an annoying dog.



The roses in the garden are little competition for the large tree. It is the only fruit tree in our garden to flower in autumn and the first to bear the seasonal fruit in early spring.





All winter long the fruit will swell maturing to a rich yellow in April. The fruit is best eaten straight off the tree as it quickly loses it's flavour once picked. Although our Nespolo, as the tree is called in Italian probably grew from a seed, it's fruit is tastier than any you could buy in the shops. We gorge ourselves on the abundant fruit looking at the sea, and repopulate the gardens with the seeds. Dried and very sweet, their natural fall off the tree in summer is the delight of tiny lizards which nibble the casing, that is, if the dog doesn't have them for breakfast first.





16 comments:

Anonymous said...

A-ah. I've been wondering for YEARS what the English name of nespola is!!! Can you tell me please?
dollyna

Scintilla said...

dollyna - I believe that it's 'loquat'.

Anonymous said...

THANK YOU!!!
dollyna

Lucia said...

I love Almonds! Aren't Nespoli ALMONDS? I see snow in those Mountains! Is that snow?

Lucia said...

Oh, never mind....I was confused with the other Italian name for almonds which my very foggy brain can't even conjure up right now!
Scusa!

Scintilla said...

lucia - Almonds are 'Mandorle' in Italian.

Lucia said...

I know that now...I couldn't think of it, I finally got through to my mom! lol...duh? It's the cold in my head!

casalba said...

Oh your tree is fantastic. Mine never has blossom like that, but then it's only three years old so I'll keep my fingers crossed.

The (Mis)Adventures of a Single City Chick said...

Beautiful photos! By the way, I have a surprise for you over on my blog. Congrats! :-)

Scintilla said...

Casalba- Our tree would be close to 45 years old.

Christina- WOW!

adrienne said...

Beautiful picture. I had a loquat tree behind a house I rented and never really knew what to do with it. The fruit had such a mild taste.

chiara76 said...

Hmm, I can feel this scentaround me;)
Greetings from autumn Warsaw.

Scintilla said...

adrienne - The fruit loses flavour after picking and are usually more flavoursome when just underipe.

Chiara- nice to see you!

Cherrye at My Bella Vita said...

Beautiful ... I'll have to ask if we have one of those around. I've heard them say nespoli before. I don't know what loquat are either, though. What is the name in TEXAN??

Scintilla said...

Cherrye- It would be easier to invite you over to taste them!

Robyn said...

Our nespola is in blossom too. I had to smile at your comparison to the shedding dog. Each year I have to defend our poor tree from The Gardener who is intent on chopping it down because of the mess it creates and the fact that the fruit is always terribly flawed.

Maybe this year, supported by your inspiring photos, I can persuade him to spray it instead.