Persimmon trees originated in China and have been cultivated for centuries. Now more than two thousand cultivars exist. Persimmons were introduced to California in the 1800’s. Persimmon trees are grown for their fruit and for their attractive appearance in the landscape. It is a handsome ornamental with the drooping leaves and branches that give it a tropical appearance. The fall colors of the persimmon can be dramatic is certain years. The leaves will turn shades of yellow, orange, and red. During the growing season the leaves are a glossy green and they can grow up to 7 inches long and 4 inches wide. The American persimmon tree is a native of North America. Native Americans used the persimmon fruit for puddings, cornbread, and even brewed it for beer.
Persimmon fruit can be classified in 2 general categories: those that bear astringent fruit and those that bear nonastringent fruit. Most astringent fruit types will become less astringent when the fruits are allowed to get soft ripe. Freezing the fruit overnight and then thawing the fruit removes the astringency. Persimmon fruits are rich in health promoting nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. The fruit is low in calories and fats but is a rich source of dietary fiber.
Persimmon trees are relatively fast growing, especially the non-native cultivars. A persimmon fruit tree does need much fertilizer. Incorporate the fertilizer in the soil around the tree about once a year. They do require pruning so that he branches do not get too long. The heavy weight of the fruit at the end of long branches may cause them to break. We offer several persimmon varieties and they are displayed below.