I just got off the phone with Cliff England. Others may find some of this interesting.
@Arhus76 I was going to edit my old posts, but I decided just to make a new post. I appreciate all of your information. I hope you share your experiences with your persimmons. You guys have access to a lot of things we don’t, but I guess that goes both ways.
First, I do not have a 50/50 male Rosseyanka (despite my invoice saying so). I have 75% Virginiania 25% Kaki male, which is polygamous. It produces some fruit according to Cliff. This male is the one used in all/most? of the late David Lavergne’s breeding projects.
Second, he feels there is a lot of misinformation regarding Kaki decline and death. Basically, he feels it’s cold damage and so does Jerry Lehman. He told me he has seen Kaki grafted on lotus/Kaki over 400 years old. I don’t think my Kaki on lotus will live that long, they look like crap in my soil. He also told me he has Kaki on Virginiania over 25 years old. I lack the experience to fully disagree that it’s just cold damage. From what I’ve seen in zone 8B I think there is something going on that no one can pinpoint. I really wish I took a photo of the two persimmon trees side by side; one woke up last Spring and the other didn’t. He told me this could have been Spring freeze damage… maybe he is right. These late freezes may weaken the tree leaving it vulnerable to disease. I know nothing of your weather conditions across the pond, but I imagine you all have a lot more of a buffer than we do in the Eastern US.
The polar vortex is really doing a number on Cliff’s Kakis. Cold tolerance is critical for him.