Kiwifruit, also known as Chinese gooseberry is a small, oval fruit with a fuzzy brown exterior and bright green flesh inside. It is native to China and was originally known as yang tao. The fruit is now grown in many countries including Italy, New Zealand and the United States. Kiwifruit is known for it’s high nutrient content including vitamins C and E, fiber and potassium. It has a sweet and slightly tangy flavor and is commonly eaten fresh, as well as used in salads, smoothies and other dishes.
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Varieties Of Kiwifruit
Hayward is the most common variety of kiwifruit and is named after the city of Hayward, California where it was first grown commercially. It is known for it’s oval shape and fuzzy brown skin. The flesh is bright green and sweet, with a tangy flavor. The Hayward variety is usually available from fall to late spring and is commonly used in fruit salads, smoothies and as a garnish. It is a popular fruit due to it’s nutritional value, containing high levels of vitamin C, dietary fiber and antioxidants.
Golden kiwifruit, also known as yellow kiwifruit is a variety of kiwifruit that has a smooth hairless skin with a golden color. It has a sweeter taste than the traditional green kiwifruit and has a tropical flavor with notes of mango and pineapple. Golden kiwifruit is typically available from late fall to early spring and is used in a variety of culinary applications including smoothies, salads and desserts. It is also rich in vitamins C and E, as well as dietary fiber and antioxidants.
Red kiwifruit, also known as kiwi berry is a relatively new variety of kiwifruit that has a small grape-sized shape and a smooth edible skin. It’s flesh is bright green with small black seeds and has a sweet and tangy flavor similar to the traditional green kiwifruit but with a slightly more tropical taste. Red kiwifruit is usually available during the summer months and is commonly used in salads and as a garnish. It is also a good source of vitamin C, potassium and fiber.
Baby kiwi, also known as hardy kiwi or kiwi berry is a smaller and sweeter variety of kiwifruit. It is about the size of a grape and has a smooth edible skin that does not need to be peeled. Baby kiwi has a similar taste to the traditional green kiwifruit, but with a milder flavor and sweeter taste. It is usually available in the late summer to early fall and can be eaten as a healthy snack or used in recipes, such as smoothies and salads. Baby kiwi is also a good source of vitamin C, vitamin E and fiber.
Arctic kiwi, also known as hardy kiwi, tundra kiwi or Siberian gooseberry is a small fruit. That is similar in appearance to the traditional kiwifruit but with a smoother and thinner skin. It is typically smaller in size than the traditional kiwifruit with a length of around 1 to 2 inches and has a green flesh with small black seeds. Arctic kiwi has a sweeter taste than the traditional kiwifruit, with a flavor that is described as a mix of kiwifruit, strawberry and melon. It is usually available in the late summer to early fall and can be eaten as a snack or used in recipes such as desserts and smoothies. Arctic kiwi is also a good source of vitamin C, vitamin E and fiber.
How To Grow Kiwifruit In Your Home Garden?
- Choose the right variety: There are several varieties of kiwi available but the most commonly grown varieties are the fuzzy kiwi (Actinidia deliciosa) and the hardy kiwi (Actinidia arguta). Choose a variety that is suitable for your climate and soil conditions.
- Find the right location: Growing Kiwifruit plants need full sun and well-draining soil. Choose a location that receives at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight per day and has good drainage.
- Prepare the soil: Kiwi plants prefer slightly acidic soil with a pH between 5.0 and 6.5. Test your soil and amend it with compost, peat moss or sulfur to adjust the pH if necessary. Kiwi plants also need soil that is rich in organic matter so add compost or aged manure to the soil before planting.
- Plant the kiwi: Plant the kiwi vines in the spring, after the danger of frost has passed. Space the plants at least 10 feet apart and provide support for the vines to climb, such as a trellis or wire fence.
- Water and fertilize: Growing Kiwifruit plants need regular watering, especially during the first year after planting. Water deeply once a week or more often during hot, dry weather. Fertilize the plants with a balanced fertilizer in the spring and summer.
- Prune the vines: Kiwifruit vines need to be pruned regularly to promote fruit production and keep the vines under control. Prune the vines in the winter cutting back the previous year’s growth to 6-8 buds.
- Harvest the fruit: Kiwi fruit is ready to harvest in the fall, when the fruit is plump and firm to the touch. Cut the fruit from the vines with a sharp knife and store it in a cool, dry place until ready to eat.
Requirements For Growing Kiwi
Growing Kiwi is a subtropical plant and requires a long growing season with warm temperatures. It grows best in areas with a mild climate, free of frost and with plenty of sunshine. In general, kiwifruit prefers a climate similar to that of it’s native China. Where summers are hot and humid and winters are mild.
Kiwifruit prefers well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. The soil should have a pH level between 5.5 and 7.0. Before planting kiwifruit. It is important to amend the soil with compost, manure or other organic matter to improve it’s fertility and drainage.
Growing Kiwifruit requires regular watering, especially during the growing season. The plant prefers moist soil but it is important not to overwater as this can lead tree roots to rot. A good rule of thumb is to water deeply once a week or more frequently if the weather is hot and dry.
Kiwifruit requires plenty of sunlight to grow and fruit. It is best to plant kiwifruit in a location that receives full sun. Although some shade is also acceptable, especially in hot climates.
Kiwifruit vines are vigorous climbers and require support to grow properly. Trellises or arbors are commonly used to support the vines and keep them off the ground. It is important to provide a sturdy support structure that can withstand the weight of the vines and fruit.
Kiwifruit requires regular fertilization to maintain healthy growth and fruit production. A balanced fertilizer that is high in nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium is ideal. Fertilize the plants once a month during the growing season.
Regular pruning is essential for kiwifruit to maintain it’s shape and to encourage fruit production. Prune the vines in the late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Remove any dead or damaged wood and thin out the vines to allow for better air circulation and sunlight penetration.