Germinating Texas persimmon (Diospyros texana)

Does anyone have any special tips for germinating D. texana seeds? I assume a cold stratification is advisable, maybe scarification? Any unique soil needs?

I got a couple packets of seeds from Rich Farm Garden, planning to cold strat them for a couple months and then maybe a heating pad to germinate, then direct sow any germinated seeds.

I’ll be curious to see how it can handle the cool Seattle climate, I’ve seen some neighbors have good luck with D. kaki and D. virginiana, but I suspect texana might need a little more summer heat to flourish.

good luck with those, I don’t know what the requirements are, but the native range is from western OK down to north eastern Mexico. So the plant definitely likes things on the dryer side. Given that it does grow in northern Mexico, I suspect that it either doesn’t need a cold season, or what it needs is very little (growing range looks to span USDA hardiness zones 6-9 maybe into 10). Growing in Seattle, you may need to keep an umbrella over it!

I’m hoping it will like our dry season from June to Sept, when sometimes it doesn’t rain at all for 2 months at a time. But yeah, winters will be wet!

Fruit tastes like licorice and juice stains your shirt. Need male and female trees. Picked from a nearby tree. Don’t like them myself.


Translation of Seattle winter weather for those who don’t live there, “winters will be wet” = starts raining on Labor Day and stops on Father’s Day. Moss grows in your lawn and on your roof.


Yup! Though the total volume of winter rainfall is less than most other parts of the country (deserts excluded), since it’s basically a light drizzle the entire time with only occasional heavier rain. And then byJuly the lawns all turn brown and the roads get dusty until the spigot gets turned on again next Labor Day.

Notice from the chart we average only 1.5" of rain in the month of September, and even the wettest month averages only about 6.5", so it may rain all day and it adds up to barely a quarter of an inch.

Only place in the world with a bumpershoot(umbrella) festival

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Sorry, I missed this reply and just saw the other one!

Thanks for the info, licorice sounds interesting… may not be my favorite either then… I had read that some selections taste similar to its tropical cousin the black sapote, one of my favorite tropical fruits, so I was hoping to track those selections down and graft scions onto my seedlings if they can grow here. My hope was they would be dormant for the winter and might be able to put up with the rain due to dormancy.

I am hoping to add one of these to my yard at some point, but had not heard of the licorice taste. I wish I could find some wild around me to try first.
I used to live across the sound on the Kitsap peninsula. The weather is very unique to say the least. For all that rain, thunder and lightning are quite rare. Seeing that graph just feels wrong, but it is as you said, it will rain all day, but it is just a really light drizzle.

You may even benefit from planting it in a raised bed (brought up 6-8") for better drainage.

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Swincher, Your plan is spot on. I’ve germinated a bunch of them that way. You’ll need both male and female and they are slow growers. Some of mine are irrigated. They do like water if the soil drains well. They are not swamp trees. D


I had trouble finding time to prune my trees this year because we didn’t really have a two to three day window without some sort of rain.

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I ended up only getting one to sprout last year, so I ordered another batch of 10 seeds in the fall that have been cold stratifying in a pot outside over the winter. Hopefully I’ll get a few more this time so that I’ll have a decent chance of at least one male and at least one female. The first-year seedling seems like it’s been happily dormant in its pot outside this winter, despite lots of rain and some cold temperatures (15°F on the lowest night):

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Not a bad amount of growth in one growing season here in our “cool” Seattle summer:

None of the next seeds germinated, so I’ll just grow this one and then try to multi-graft it with the opposite sex once I figure out which one this is. Might require a Texas vacation at some point to collect scionwood, though.


That doesn’t look like Texas persimmon. The leaves are too big. A young Texana’s leaves look like ilex vomitoria. That:s also too much growth for the first year. I’ve watched a bunch of them grow from seed. D


This is the second year, not first – the previous post shows the same plant’s size when it was dormant after the first year.

As far as leaf shape & size, that’s a shame! The seller is linked in the first post in this thread, and they have a variety of persimmon species they sell seeds of, so it’s possible they had a labeling mixup. Another possibility I guess would be that it hybridized with one of the other species they are growing for seed, though I don’t know the relative chromosome counts or if that’s even possible.

I just ordered 20 seeds from a different source (an Etsy shop with pretty good reviews), so hopefully I can get some of the right species germinated by spring. I’ll leave this one in the ground because I’m very curious what kind of persimmon it’ll end up being.

Yumm, native Texas Persimmons. I personally don’t like them myself but always a novelty at a local fruit walk park near Houston,TX. Mexican plums the next tree over. Note the black stain of the ripe fruit that would be on your tee shirt if not careful. Red ones are mexican plums. Note for growers you need both male and female trees meaning a long wait until you know what a seedling is. This fruit is tough and all the green ones will turn the devils black shortly. The ever popular Texas black fruits are sold out.


I may reach out to you next summer!

I must confess that my main motivation at this point is to try to create a hybrid with D. nigra, if I can get that to grow in my greenhouse, which is on my to-do list for next year. They appear to have the same chromosome count, at least, and if texana won’t produce seeds without pollination, then I’d want to only offer it nigra pollen by hand and see what happens. Their natural ranges don’t quite meet, so there may not have been much of an opportunity for chance hybrids to be discovered in the wild even if they can readily hybridize, and I haven’t found any papers discussing anyone attempting to cross them.

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Mexican plums are the the next tree. Trees are in a city fruit park walk.

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Thank you @anon47724557, the box arrived today! Two of them were soft and black, so I got my first taste of this fruit. I have to say I didn’t detect any licorice/anise flavor at all, but it also was not very flavorful in any way. Mildly sweet, with a texture that strongly reminds me of D. nigra, but without the almost chocolatey flavor profile of that species. I can see how people might compare them, though, and I really hope I can get them to hybridize. Now I just need to find a good source of black sapote for my greenhouse next year!