(Eriobotrya Japonica, Lindl.; Photinia Japonica, Gray.)
In the South this is usually called Japan plum. It is a small evergreen tree (214) and its fruit is regarded a fair substitute for the Cherry from North Florida westward to Texas, and South California. In this country it has been mainly propagated from the seeds, and it varies but little in size or quality of fruit from the Atlantic to the Pacific. So far as known to the writer the only variety propagated South on Angers Quince stocks is the Giant, imported from Japan within recent years. This is larger in size and is not as seedy as the average seedlings. The only American attempt to improve this fruit known to the writer was made by Mr. C. P. Taft of Orange, California. His work has shown it susceptible of speedy improvement in size, flavor, color, and bearing habits of the tree, as well as securing early and late varieties.
Of the valuable varieties developed by Mr. Taft, Prof. Wickson says that the one named Advance is most valuable. Of these he gives the following descriptions.
Very large, often three inches long and from one to one and one-quarter inches in diameter, peculiarly pear-shaped; color bright orange-yellow when fully ripe; flavor distinct and very sweet; many compare its flavor with that of the Cherry. If not bruised when handled, it will keep easily two weeks, growing sweeter, and will eventually shrivel up without decay. The clusters frequently contain twenty specimens.
Large, from two to three inches in length, pear-shaped; very sweet when fully ripe; clusters very large.
The largest of Mr. Taft's varieties; color pink to red, and ' regarded best for canning, but not as good for dessert use.