When we think of kiwi, we often visualize a tree heavy with brown, fuzzy fruits. However, contrary to common belief, kiwis do not grow on trees. They grow on a vine known as a kiwi vine or kiwifruit vine. These climbing plants possess a distinct growth pattern and care routine, which we will explore further in this article.
Understanding Kiwi Vines
A kiwi vine, native to New Zealand, can be easily grown in many locations worldwide. These hardy kiwi fruit vines can reach lengths of several feet and are known for their vigorous growth. The kiwi variety and location determine the hardiness zones appropriate for their development.
Types of Kiwi Plants
There are several kiwi varieties, the most popular being the fuzzy and hardy kiwi. The fuzzy kiwi is famous for its brown fruit with green insides, while the hardy kiwi fruit bears smaller fruit that often lacks the fuzzy exterior.
Planting Kiwi Vines
The planting process is essential for the fruit production of your kiwi vine. For best results, we recommend planting your kiwifruit in your garden during the early spring. Remember to choose a spot with full sun or partial shade and soil rich in organic matter.
Planning Where to Plant
Kiwis require ample space to grow due to their climbing habit. Therefore, placing them near a sturdy trellis or fence can provide support. In addition, kiwi vines are heavy feeders, so adding a slow-release fertilizer during planting can boost growth.
Male and Female Kiwi Plants
Unique to kiwi vines is the concept of male and female plants. You’ll need to plant a male and a female plant nearby for successful pollination leading to fruit production. Generally, a single male vine can pollinate up to eight female plants.
Caring for Kiwi Vines
Prune your kiwi plant in late winter when the plant is dormant. This helps promote new growth, ensuring the plant produces plenty of flowers and fruit in the growing season.
Feed your plant a balanced fertilizer in early spring to replenish nutrients and stimulate growth. Regular application of organic matter can help maintain soil fertility.
Harvesting Kiwi Fruit
When the growing season ends and the kiwis at home are ready to harvest, it’s essential to note that the fruit can be stored for months if kept in a cool location. The ripening process can be encouraged by storing them with apples or bananas.
In conclusion, kiwi vines are an interesting addition to any garden. These climbing plants tend to grow quickly and bear plenty of edible fruit. They can continue to produce for up to forty years if adequately cared for. Your kiwi vine will yield delightful kiwi fruits with the right hardiness zone and adequate care.
So, while kiwis don’t grow on trees, they are still an excellent choice for the dedicated home gardener.
Remember, your success in growing kiwi fruit combines hardiness, pruning, fertilization, and a correct male-to-female plant ratio. With these factors in check, you’ll easily grow kiwis in your backyard, enjoy the lush green foliage, and anticipate a fruitful harvest each year.