Mail-order fresh Medlar fruits (azgeel in Farci, nespola in Italian, Mispeln in German, nispero in Spanish)
Note that I am talking about medlars, the fruit of Mespilus germanica, NOT the little orange things called loquats, which is from Eriobotrya japonica, there is often confusion
One Green World in Molalla, Oregon; is a nursery but they also ship fresh medlars
(877) 353-4028 -
fruits through November 24, two pounds (minimum) by second day delivery, $24.95
Scott Farm, 707 Kipling Road, Dummerston, Vermont (802) 254-6868,
Call for availability and prices
Honey Bear Ranch in California - google them and you should get their website - they're in California so they should have them ready later in the season
Remember, medlars are “rotten before they’re ripe” – You need to let them sit at room temperature for a few weeks until they essentially go bad and look brown and ugly and deflated and are soft (this process is called “bletting”) – the flesh inside will turn from hard and white to brown and mushy. To eat, peel the skin starting from the open end, and spoon out the flesh – note that there will be four to six seeds embedded in the flesh.
Medlar trees are available for shipment from many nurseries, and are great trees to grow, even for those who aren’t dedicated to gardening, for several reasons:
-They are completely self-fertile, so you only need one tree (and having different varieties won’t even help)
-They can tolerate some shade
-are relatively tough and pest-free trees
-are relatively precocious – it’s common for a grafted tree to fruit on the second year!
-the fruits are hard and astringent until you harvest then blet them – so animals won’t eat the fruits before you do, so you don’t need to protect the tree from animals
-Are hardy to USDA Zone 5, so will grow over most of mainland America without protection from cold. USDA Zone 5 stops at around Southern Vermont. Of course the tree will not fruit in Hawaii or Southern Florida for lack of winter frost, and the hot, arid areas of the Southwest will be tough on the tree without plenty of irrigation. And while Southern California has a great climate in terms of temperatures, it has very little rain. But like apple trees, they are right at home in the Northeast, needing little irrigation there (only water when it’s really hot and/or hasn’t rained in a while). As a matter of fact, they grow wild throughout Europe and England and Southwest Asia.
-are very pretty, with a rustic sort of look – they’ll look great even in (if not especially in) the middle of a lawn. Both the flowers and the unique fruits look great on the tree, and the autumn colors are spectacular
- the fruit is picked late in the season – when the leaves on the tree start to fall, and then you have to take the time to blet it, after which it will last for a couple of weeks – so you’ll have fresh, good fruit in the dead of winter/autumn when nothing else is in season
-can be grafted onto apple, pear, quince, hawthorn (and of course medlar itself) – I would imagine that this means it could also be grafted on crabapple, and maybe Bradford pear (haven’t tried this yet) – so you likely already have a thriving, suitable rootstock tree
I encourage everyone to plant a medlar tree if they have land, even if you haven’t gardened before and don’t plan on taking care of the tree too much – with this tree you are likely to succeed.