Persimmon germination/breeding questions

I have some seeds for the first time in my hybrid and kaki persimmons.
The varieties are JT02 x Maru, Nikita’s gift X Maru, Jiro X Maru and Nishimura Wase X Maru

Do I need to stratify the seeds? Or can they be planted out now? Can I use a root pruning container to produce fibrous roots?

In the case of the kaki hybrids, can the offspring be male or will I always have a fruit producing seedling? I have never heard of a male kaki, hence the question.

What about hybrids? What is the chance that the offspring is a male? These hybrids will be 75-87.5% Kaki so they are mostly Kaki.

I think the probability of male trees is around 70% on Americans, not sure on kaki or hybrids.

On American, you stratify moist for a few months for better results. As kaki likes warmer climates that might not be the case… Hopefully someone else chimes in!

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I stratified my hybrid persimmon seeds in a sandwich ziplock bag and placed them in the refrigerator in the fruits section and plant them out in late April in Z5. In warmer zone then planting them a bit earlier.



I’ve germinated kaki seeds just by putting them in moist paper towels in a zip lock and keeping if fairly warm (75 degrees or so). Once I see the root I stick them in pots. I have no idea what they turned into since I just did it for fun and gave them away through a local Facebook group.

I expect your mostly hybrid ones would germinate just fine without the cold treatment just like kaki. For me though, I find it hard to keep up with tree seedlings under lights and keep them from getting leggy, so I might put them in for stratifying just because it keeps them dormant until I can get them outside.

Even though I’ve seen people say that American persimmons need cold stratification, I’ve actually had them germinate without it. I’m not sure if you’d get a higher germination rate with stratification, but about half of mine just came up from going right into pots. These were locally collected (from a sidewalk) maybe had enough scarification from being stepped on and a cold night or two and that was all they really needed. I would be curious if someone did a test or if there was some good research on germination rates based on different lengths of stratification.


@SMC_zone6, @KYnuttrees, @Barkslip
Adding some of our resident experts to learn about the female/male ratio etc.

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Wevhave been growing out from hybirds since 2006

Roughly the male to female ratio is about 70% male
But that not bad considering that every tree is usefull in that the males make excellent rootstocks


Thank you Cliff!

beautiful cliff
you ever see males flip to female? like years 3-5?

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Beautiful fruit. What are the hybrids shown in the pictures?

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Gora Gorverla

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Just in one cultivar its Hokkaido Kaki

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I’ve had several (4 or 5) in a total of maybe 15 male trees, begin to produce fruit. They never stopped producing the male flowers, so I can’t call it a “flip.” Jerry Lehman told me once that that was uncommon.


Another question: How long will it take for seedlings to bear flowers?

Can the period be shortened by grafting to a mature tree? If so, how long will it take then?

It’s about seedling height. When they reach 5 or 6 feet, they probably are ready to flower. I have seen so many varieties though thru grafting that there are precocious cultivars from the get go. But, it’s about size.

Sure, grafting to a vigorous branch or vigorous seedling will result in much faster fruiting.

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I’ve had some flower as quickly as five years. Most take at least seven.

I’ve been getting a mix of males and females with my hybrids. Although, in the case of JT-02 seedlings, in a small sample size of ten, all but one of those were female. For all my other hybrids, it’s usually more males than females.

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80% is a literature reading suggestion for male to female ratio persimmon offspring.

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Hey @ram if you’re smart enough you can keep seedlings in a gallon pot for 4+ years I guess. The stress brought about maybe 4 of the 15-20 that remain I grew seedlings of from Lehman’s orchard. It was this year they flowered. There’s almost none soil left in them. The other 11 or so I potted up as to not lose them, this fall. They literally are a block of roots almost like a hydroponic rooting square block of media. I could probably do well to root inside them.

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I believe that it is standard practice in Japanese breeding programs to graft the seedling to an established rootstock. From an admittedly frail memory, I recall that the seedling can then fruit in 2-3 years.

I see a long way back in another thread that’s too old @cousinfloyd has found on average 4-5 years for virginiana on average. That sets with @SMC_zone6 5-years estimate. My suggestion for vigor being played in also will influence.

Tom Wahl showed me persimmon grafts - 1.5 years old and they were enormous topping out at sometimes 8 or more feet. He set his grafts on 1 year old seedlings only started in Plantra’s. He said when I left with a car full of Plantra’s for breeding here (seedling growth and not graft) that in 1-year the seedlings would be out of the tubes and that’s when they “immediately” was the word Tom said, ‘they would slow down…’ and resume to normal vigor.

Best regards,