The Medlar tree Mespilus germanica
The Medlar Tree can be identified by its leaves, flower and unusual fruit. It has been cultivated in England since Medieval times. The Medlar tree is the only species in the Mespilus genus which is a member of the Rose family. It is most closely related to the Crataegus genus (Hawthorn) which is also a member of the Rose family.
The Medlar Mespilus germanica is a small tree native to the Black Sea coast of Turkey, through the Caucasus, to northern Iran. It has been cultivated in those regions for thousands of years. It was cultivated in England in Medieval times and was a commonly eaten fruit even in Victorian times but is now rarely eaten. It is not common but is found in old gardens and may have spread into woods in warmer areas. The tree is often grafted onto a hawthorn rootstock. The first photo shows a Medlar tree in late April. The second photo shows that the leaves are long, narrow and wrinkly.