Diospyros kaki, Asian Persimmon
Zone
7/6a
Pollination
self-fertile (parthenocarpic), self-fertile (monoecious)
Blooms
(overall) very late spp
Ripens
4.5+ months
Chill Hours
100 or less
pH
6.0 to 7.0 is preferred spp
Yield
2 - 3 years (clone)

Asian persimmons are native to eastern China. The southern half can receive an incredible amount of rainfall during the summer, up to 10" per month, with spring being quite wet as well. The northern half can be fairly dry during spring, with 0" to 2" per month being common, but it receives around 4" to 6" per month during the first 2 months of summer before becoming dry again for the rest of the year.

Massive temperature fluctuations experienced during late winter and spring in Eastern US are believed to occasionally cause seemingly random Asian persimmon trees to suddenly die back to the ground. This shouldn't be too discouraging since they are fairly precocious and can be buried down to their graft line and grown on their own roots.

Asian persimmons come in astringent and non-astringent forms (all American and hybrid persimmons are astringent). Astringent Persimmons require bletting before they become edible. When it comes to persimmons, this means you need to let them sit around (or hang on the tree) for awhile until they become quite gelatinous, almost like a water balloon. Non-astringent Persimmons lose their astringency much quicker, to the point where they can be eaten while they're still firm.

Asian persimmons are distributed between four different categories.
1) Pollination-Constant Astringent (PCA): the typical astringent persimmon.
2) Pollination-Constant Non-Astringent (PCNA): the typical non-astringent persimmon.
3) Pollination-Variant Astringent (PVA): if it has not been pollinated, it is an astringent persimmon that lacks flavor.
4) Pollination-Variant Non-Astringent (PVNA): if it has not been pollinated, it is an astringent persimmon that lacks flavor. If it has been pollinated, it develops a better flavor and can be eaten firm like a non-astringent persimmon.

Asian Persimmons have a reputation for having a similar flavor between most cultivars, however, astringent cultivars are often sweeter than non-astringent cultivars. One explanation for this is that most Asian cultivars in the US and Europe can be traced back to Japan. Since Diospyros kaki is believed to be native to China, I assume the Japanese only had access to trees from a small region, thus causing the genetic diversity between them to be rather lacking (especially amongst the PCNA-type). Fortunately, cultivars from China and Korea are starting to show up in the US, and it appears they may have a few more unique qualities. One of the qualities we do know of is greater cold tolerance.




Diospyros virginiana, American Persimmon
Zone
5a/6/4
Pollination
self-sterile (dioecious), self-fertile (parthenocarpic), self-fertile (monoecious)
Blooms
(overall) very late spp
Ripens
4+ months
pH
6.0 to 7.0 is preferred spp
Yield
2 - 4 years (clone)
Tolerant
saline soil (semi-)

American persimmons are native to eastern US. Rainfall can be between 2.5" to 5.5" per month throughout the year, but it generally reside around 3" to 4".

Pollinating a 90-chromosome female American persimmon with a 60-chromosome male will give you a higher yield of seedless fruit (most named cultivars are 90-chromosome because they tend to be larger, sweeter, and ripen earlier). The main problem with this method is that it can be difficult to get your hands on a 60-chromosome tree. Additionally, the 60-chromosome strain may not be as cold hardy as the 90-chromosome strain. We do know they grow in Kentucky, which implies they are at least hardy down to Zone 6b.




Diospyros spp, Persimmon
  (additional notes)
Persimmons are relatively disease free, with the exception of leaf spot, a fairly minor, but difficult to avoid, affliction.

Asian persimmons, and their hybrids, will finish ripening off the tree, even if they are picked when they first become yellow (varies to some extent by cultivar). I'm not sure how true this is for American persimmons, it's usually not required since the most popular cultivars ripen earlier.



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Asian Persimmon
Diospyros kaki

Chinebuli

buy
Acquired in Bulgaria, but may have originated in China or Korea like "Korea Kaki".
Zone
:
6a
Ripens
:
mid?

non-astringent

Chocolate

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
mid-late?

Chocolate is a pollination-variant non-astringent cultivar (PVNA) that produces male and female flowers (monoecious).

Coffee Cake

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
early-mid

Coffee Cake, also known as Nishimura Wase, is a pollination-variant non-astringent cultivar (PVNA), so its flavor greatly benefits from pollination.

Early Fuyu

buy
bud mutation of Fuyu
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
mid-late? (mid)

Early Fuyu is also known as Matsumoto Wase Fuyu. non-astringent

Eureka

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
mid-late?

Eureka may produce male flowers (possibly a rare occurrence). astringent

Fire Crystal

buy
Originated in Central China near the city of Xian. Lintong Huo Jing
Zone
:
7

dwarf, astringent

Fuyu

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
late

"Fuyu" is a fairly confusing cultivar. Some well-known nurseries imply that it's also called Jiro, while others imply that Jiro is a completely separate cultivar. Another nursery implies Jiro is also called California Fuyu (Jiro was marketed as Fuyu in California, which probably led to the name "California Fuyu"), and Fuyu is also called Imoto (I'm assuming it has the same story, Imoto was originally marketed as Fuyu). Basically, what we do know is that Jiro and Fuyu are supposed to be different cultivars, and many cultivars were originally marketed as Fuyu.

Giombo

buy
Zone
:
7a
Ripens
:
mid? 2 weeks later than Saijo in FL
Size
:
4 to 5" fruit

astringent

Great Wall

buy
Originated in China.
Zone
:
6b?
Ripens
:
mid? (early-mid)
Size
:
3" fruit

astringent

Gwang Yang

buy
Originated in Gwangyang, South Korea.
Zone
:
6?
Ripens
:
mid?

dwarf, non-astringent

Hachiya

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
late
Size
:
4" fruit

Hachiya is a common commercial cultivar. astringent

Hana Fuyu

buy
Zone
:
7a
Ripens
:
mid?
Size
:
larger than Fuyu

Hana Fuyu is also known as Giant Fuyu and Yotsundani. I have seen reports saying that it can produce male flowers. dwarf, non-astringent

Hanagosho

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
late

Hanagosho can produce male flowers. non-astringent

Honan Red

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
mid?

Honan Red has a fairly good reputation among home growers when it comes to flavor. astringent

Hira Tanenashi

buy
Zone
:
6b?
Ripens
:
mid?

astringent

Ichikikei Jiro

buy
bud mutation of Jiro
Zone
:
7a (6b)
Ripens
:
mid? (early-mid)

Ichi may receive severe dieback in lower zone 6b temperatures. dwarf, non-astringent

Izu

buy
Zone
:
6b? (7a)
Ripens
:
early-mid

Izu is hardier than Ichi by a few degrees, but will probably experience some dieback from zone 6b temperatures.

Saijo's flavor appears to be preferred over Izu in cool summer climates.

dwarf, non-astringent

Korea Kaki

buy
Originated near the border of China and North Korea (Zone 5 or 6)
Zone
:
5b? (6a)

astringent

Maekawa Jiro

buy
bud mutation of Jiro
Zone
:
6b? (7a)
Ripens
:
early-mid? (mid) -- roughly 1 week before Ichikikei Jiro

Maekawa Jiro and Maekawa Fuyu are probably the same cultivar since 1) both are considered to be a bud mutation of Jiro, 2) Maekawa Fuyu is a name that is basically non-existent, with the exception of one popular nursery's use of it, and 3) that nursery does not sell Maekawa Jiro along side Maekawa Fuyu. non-astringent

Miss Kim

buy
Originated in Korea.
Zone
:
6a
Ripens
:
early-mid

dwarf, astringent

Ormond

buy
Zone
:
7? (8)
Ripens
:
very late
Size
:
2.625" fruit

Saijo

buy
Zone
:
6b
Ripens
:
early-mid

Saijo is often said to be noticeably sweeter than most other asian persimmons.

Mentioned for being hardy down to -10F (zone 6a) by quite a few nurseries, I am under the impression that this is something you shouldn't take too seriously, so it is best grown in zone 6b or higher. astringent

Sheng

buy
Zone
:
6a? (6b)
Ripens
:
early-mid
Size
:
3 to 4" fruit

dwarf, astringent

Suruga

buy
Hanagosho x Okugosho
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
very late

non-astringent

Tam Kam

buy
Originated in Korea.
Zone
:
6b (6a)
Ripens
:
mid?

Tam Kam may be able to survive zone 6a temperatures, but it will experience some dieback. non-astringent

Tamopan

buy
Zone
:
7
Ripens
:
late
Size
:
3 to 5" fruit

Tamopan is a large, uniquely shaped persimmon that looks like a capped acorn without the pointed end. The tree can grow up to 30ft in height, which is fairly tall for Asian persimmon cultivars in the US.

It is not recommended due to a lack of sweetness and flavor, in comparison to many other Kaki persimmons. astringent

hybrid Persimmon
Diospyros hybrid

Kassandra

buy
Great Wall x Rosseyanka F2 male (Rosseyanka (D. Kaki x D. Virginiana) x D. virginiana)
Zone
:
6b (5b)
Size
:
2.5 to 2.75" fruit

Kassandra may greatly increase hardiness with age, possibly even surviving zone 5a temperatures with some, but not complete, dieback. astringent

Mikkusu

buy
Josephine (D. Virginiana) x Taishu (D. Kaki). Bred in Japan.
Zone
:
5a
Size
:
2.5" to 3" fruit

Mikkusu is also known as JT-02. precocious, astringent

Nikita's Gift

buy
Rosseyanka (D. Kaki x D. Virginiana) x D. Kaki? Developed in Yalta, Ukraine.
Zone
:
6b (6a)
Ripens
:
mid?
Size
:
2.5" fruit

Nikita's Gift will probably experience some, but not complete, dieback during lower zone 6a temperatures. astringent

Rosseyanka

buy
D. Kaki x D. Virginiana. Developed in Yalta, Ukraine.
Zone
:
5a
Ripens
:
mid?

astringent

Zima Khurma

buy
Nikita's Gift x D. Virginiana? Bred in Japan. NB-02
Zone
:
5b? (5a)

astringent

American Persimmon
Diospyros virginiana

Blue

buy
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
mid? (mid-late)
Color
:
blue skin

self-sterile?

Campbell NC-10

buy
seedling of Early Golden.
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
early

partially self-fertile

Celebrity

buy
Dollywood (Miller x Early Golden) X F58 male (Miller x Early Golden). U-20A
Zone
:
5a
Afflictions
:
disease resistant?

Celebrity has a milder flavor than most other American persimmons. It is said to be a decent cultivar for those who like but cannot grow Asian persimmons. self-sterile?

Deer Candy

buy
100-29
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
mid-late?
Size
:
up to 2" fruit

Deer Candy slowly drops its fruit well into late fall. self-sterile?

Deer Magnet

buy
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
mid-late?

Deer Magnet drops its fruit from late fall into early winter. Also good for human consumption. self-sterile?

Dollywood

buy
seedling of Early Golden. D-128
Zone
:
5a
Ripens
:
early

self-sterile?

Early Golden

buy
Zone
:
4
Ripens
:
early
Size
:
1.5" to 2" fruit

partially self-fertile

Early Jewel

buy
Developed in Illinois.
Zone
:
5a
Ripens
:
early
Size
:
2"+ fruit, possibly up to 3"

Early Jewel is also known as H-118 and possibly Prairie Star. precocious, partially self-fertile

Elmo

buy
A-118
Zone
:
5?
Size
:
1.5"+ fruit
Afflictions
:
Fruit is resistant to black spot.

self-sterile?

Evelyn

buy
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
early-mid? (early)
Size
:
1.5"+ fruit

partially self-fertile

Garretson

buy
seedling of Early Golden
Zone
:
4? (5)
Ripens
:
early
Size
:
1.5" fruit

self-sterile?

Gordon

buy
Selected in Buffalo, New York
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
early? (early-mid)

self-sterile?

John Rick

buy
seedling of Killen
Zone
:
5a
Size
:
up to 2" fruit

self-sterile?

Killen

buy
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
early-mid? (mid)
Size
:
up to 1.5" fruit

self-sterile?

Lehman's Delight

buy
Developed in Terra Haute, Indiana. 100-46
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
mid?
Size
:
over 2" fruit (possibly over 3")

self-sterile?

Loverboy

buy
Zone
:
6?

Loverboy is a male tree with 60 chromosomes. Since most named cultivars are 90 chromosome, cross-pollination with Loverboy will cause them to produce seedless, or near seedless, fruit.

Meader

buy
Developed in Rochester, New Hampshire.
Zone
:
4 (3)
Ripens
:
early
Size
:
1.5" to 2" fruit

partially self-fertile

Morris Burton

buy
Zone
:
5?

self-sterile?

Munich

buy
Zone
:
5?
Size
:
2" fruit

self-sterile?

Osage

buy
H-69A x Szukis
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
early-mid? (early)
Size
:
up to 2" fruit

self-sterile?

Pieper

buy
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
early

partially self-fertile

Prairie Dawn

buy
Zone
:
5
Ripens
:
early

partially self-fertile

Prairie Star

buy

see Early Jewel

Prairie Sun

buy
Originated in Illinois. A-33
Zone
:
5
Ripens
:
early

partially self-fertile.

Prok

buy
Selected in Amherst, New York.
Zone
:
5a
Ripens
:
early
Size
:
Prok is one of the largest American persimmons, ranging up to 2.5" to 3" in diameter.

Prok is sometimes reported to have flavor (and texture) reminiscent of an Asian Persimmon due to its more mild nature. partially self-fertile

Ruby

buy
Zone
:
5
Ripens
:
mid?
Afflictions
:
Resistant to leaf spot.

precocious? partially self-fertile

Szukis

buy
seedling of Early Golden.
Zone
:
6?
Ripens
:
early? (early-mid)

Szukis produces male and female flowers (monoecious).

Valeene Beauty

buy
Mitchellena x Early Golden
Zone
:
5?
Size
:
up to 2.5" fruit

self-sterile? precocious

Weber

buy
Originated in Alabama
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
early

self-sterile?

Wonderful

buy
Yates X F-100 male. Selected in Kentucky.
Zone
:
5?
Ripens
:
mid? (early-mid)

self-sterile?

Yates

buy
Discovered in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Zone
:
5
Ripens
:
early
Size
:
up to 2.5" fruit

Yates is also known as Juhl. precocious, partially self-fertile