persimmon pollination and seeds

nothwehrFebruary 8, 2013

I'm new to persimmons. I planted Chocolate (from Raintree), Saijo (astringent from EL) and Makewa Jiro (non-astringent from EL) a couple years ago and got the first fruit off of the Chocolate last Fall. I'm hoping my other two trees will fruit this year. I liked the fruit although it had seeds. Around the same time I got some fruits off of a Fuyu type from a friend which did not have seeds. The Fuyus were fantastic and I found that I really like not having to deal with seeds. From doing some research, it sounds like fruit from all three varieties will have seeds due to the fact that the chocolate has male flowers. I didn't realize this before. I'm now weighing whether to remove the chocolate and replace it with a Fuyu type or live with the seeds.

I have also heard, however, that the seeds influence the flavor in a good way. I suspect my Chocolate will get better with age. Do you think the enhanced flavor is worth the seeds? Any tips for how to deal with the seeds as you eat the fruit? Mine were a little under-ripe so maybe that caused the seeds to be more difficult to remove as I sliced up the fruit and ate it.

Oh, for what it is worth the Makewa Jiro is in the front yard and the Chocolate is in the backyard about 150 feet away - not sure if I would still get cross-pollination.

Finally, I believe Raintree lists Chocolate as being astringent but the fruit I had seemed more like a non-astringent type. Does pollination/presence of seeds convert it from astringent to non-astringent?

Anyway, I would love to hear your thoughts on these issues.


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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Steve, Chocolate is PVNA meaning it is non-astringent if pollinated. It also produces both male and female flowers and pollinates itself as well as nearby trees.

For Chocolate to taste best it must be very ripe when picked. Look for it starting to turn brown. When picked too early they may never taste that good.

Seeds are supposed to make some varieties taste better; I have never seen any detailed study of how much that holds for, but its a big deal for growers in Japan and they know more about persimmons than we do.

I eat the fruits like watermelon, spit out the seeds while you eat. In the end you have to decide for yourself whether you like seeds or not. I would prefer not having to deal with them either, but not to the point of removing my PVNA persimmons, which require pollination to taste good.


    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 2:08PM
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Scott, it's a shame I didn't visit you last Fall when your persimmons were ripening so I could judge for myself on the issue of seeds vs. no-seeds! But I think you are right that I should have waited longer before I harvest last Fall. The fruit seemed too firm to eat in the manner you describe. Live and learn.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 2:42PM
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