American Persimmon Trees

American Persimmon View In Store 

This persimmon is an all american fruit. Revered through the history of north america for its abundance and eating qualities.There are two strains of American Persimmon in the U.S. A northern strain found north of the Ohio River and the Mason Dixon line and a southern strain found south to the Gulf of Mexico. They range west into the plains and are fairly common throughout their native range.The persimmon is a pioneer plant that shows up in places that are reverting back to their original wild state.Due to the chromosomal differences of the two strains, they will not successfully pollinate  one another. A persimmon grown outside its native range will set fruit but will not have viable seed. A proper pollinator will greatly increase yield.Eating an American Persimmon is a unique experience. First of all a taste test is in order. An unripe persimmon is an unpleasant experience. Unripe persimmons are very astringent.But when ripe they truly live up to their Latin name, Food of the Gods. A ripe persimmon is a delight, either eaten fresh or baked into any number of cakes pies and cookies. The imagination is the only limit to the uses for persimmons.Besides people, persimmons are relished by raccoons, deer, foxes, opossums, and others. Wildlife will seek out these trees year after year.

The Persimmon tree itself varies greatly in form. Growing in the open, it can be a short tree 20′ to 30′ tall and 20′ wide. A woods grown tree can be a giant, 60 to 70′ tall with a clear trunk 30′ to the first branch. The bark is distinctive, a blackish grey which on mature trees has a scaly broken appearance with a curious squarish character.Persimmon wood is heavy and very hard. This trait should be expected since our persimmon is the only north american relative of Ebony.

Persimmon wood is close grained and of a medium texture with a color of creamy white.Persimmon wood is difficult to find in board form as persimmon is not common enough in sizes large enough to be a commodity. Being very dense and impact resistant, Persimmon is used for golf club heads and shuttle blocks. In the wood shop it is good for mallets and tool handles. Oddly persimmon wood is very prone to rot if wet and is eagerly consumed by beetle larvae. This characteristic requires close attention when seasoning the wood for use.

Persimmon flowers are very attractive to honeybees. When in bloom the trees  can often be found by listening for the humm in the treetops coming from the bees working the flowers. Once found you will be enveloped by their pleasant fragrance.Persimmon trees are dioecious. That is, they are either male or female. A few trees will have both flowers but most are one or the other. The flowers are small and inconspicuous. Greenish white they open in late May and early June.We have selected three varieties of northern persimmons for their large size, eating qualities and  ripening dates to extend the harvest.

Hardy in zones 4-9

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