How To Grow Kiwi Fruit At Home
Kiwi is fruit with sweet and unique flavor and many healthy properties. This fruit got its name after the eponymous bird that inhabits Oceania.
In this article you can read about the benefits of this small, but very powerful fruit
Kiwi is abundant in antioxidants and vitamin C. The amount of vitamin C per 100 g kiwi is 98 mg, which is almost twice as much as is the case with orange and lemon. It is interesting that by eating one slice of kiwi you enter in your body more than 80% of the daily dose of vitamin C. Nutritionists recommend to consume the kiwi fruit in the morning for breakfast. This amazing fruit strengthens the immune system, lowers high blood pressure, protects against cancer and various allergies and the common cold. The amount of vitamin C in kiwi helps the body to neutralize free radicals and thus protects our body against many diseases, especially those that have to do with aging. Eating kiwi rejuvenates the cells in the body and generally preserves the health of the whole body.
Kiwi is especially recommended for people who smoke and make a lot of alcohol, diabetics, people prone to allergies and colds, pregnant women, the elderly, menopausal women, persons suffering from cataracts, and people with immune deficiency diseases.
Kiwis have some horticultural traits:
First of all, it is important to mention that male and female flowers are born on different plants. Because of that, both males and females must be planted in roughly ratio of 1:6 of males to females.
The plants need several years to mature and usually do not bear fruit until they are 5 to 9 years old.
kiwi plants are extremely winter hardy – tolerating temperatures as low as -30°F, they develop shoots early in the spring that are extremely sensitive to frost. In most years, we see some shoot “burning” due to frost, although the plant usually survives, regrows, and fruits despite some spring shoot removal. So, if the flowers are frosted, fruit will not develop that year.
Hardy kiwi are extremely vigorously growing vines that require a substantial supporting trellis.
How to grow kiwifruit at home?
First of all, you should cut the kiwifruit open with a knife and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Place them in a strainer and gently add pressure to separate the pulp from the seeds. Lightly run water over the seeds to clean them, and dry them on a paper towel for two days.
Next step is to fill ½ resealable plastic bag with moist perlite. Lightly push the seeds into the perlite, seal the bag and place it in the refrigerator at 40 degrees Fahrenheit for about four months. As needed, mist the perlite with a water – filled spray bottle to keep it moist.
After the steps explained above, fill a seed – raising tray up to ¾ inch from the top with moist, sterile potting mix. Tamp the soil to even the surface. Remove the kiwi seeds from the refrigerator, and sprinkle them over the soil surface. Spread a 1/8-inch layer of potting mix over the seeds, and lightly tamp it so that it’s firm in the tray.
You should spray the soil surface with water. Keep in mind that during the germination period you should keep the soil moist but not soggy. Cover the tray with plastic wrap or a glass pane to maintain the required humidity level. Place the tray in a warm area, and expect the seeds to germinate in four to five weeks.
Once the kiwifruit seeds germinate, remove the plastic and position the tray in a sunny window. Thin the seedlings to the strongest ones. When they’re large enough to handle, transplant them outside after the last frost date in your area.
Cultivate the soil in a sunny area of the garden. Remove any weeds with your hands or a garden hoe. Work a 2 – inch layer of compost into the soil to add nutrients and improve drainage.
You should transplant the kiwifruit seedlings outside near a trellis, fence, wall or patio so that they have something to climb on. Space the plants at least 10 feet apart. It is recommended to water the kiwi plants with at least 1 inch of water per week and up to 2 inches during hot weather. Don’t allow the soil to completely dry out during the growing season – keep it moist. Mulch the soil around the plants with a 4-inch layer of seed – free straw to promote soil moisture retention and to suppress weeds. Keep a 1- inch distance between the mulch and the crown of the plants.
Feed the kiwifruit a 10-10-10 fertilizer one year after transplanting the seedlings outside and every year thereafter.
Botanists explain that multi – year development of wood as kiwi requires the use of different methods of pruning, as follows:
– Pruning to form the growing shape – which apply after planting and continue it until the beginning of the birth rate, which shape the tree to the desired shape of the breeding,
– Pruning the green – is applied when the plant grows lush and lavish spreads on all sides. It is used to remove too dense and excess shoots allowing good lighting.
-pruning fertility – is carried out after the fourth year, in which attention is paid to the balance of growth and fertility.
– Pruning to revive or rejuvenate – apply at the time of weakening growth and yield of plants.
Note: Add humus every autumn or sometimes in the spring seedling. This is fertilizer dedicated to kiwis.