Site and Soil




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Kiwi

Cultivars:



  1. Actinidia kolomikta “Arctic Beauty”: A male with attractive pink and white variegated leaves. Fruit comes into bearing earlier that arguta (Issai) and is smaller. One male is able to pollinate up to eight females.

  2. Actinidia arguta “Issai”: Self pollinating, sweet, early bearing plant. Without a male the fruit is seedless, smaller and fewer. With a male the fruit is seeded, larger and more numerous. Fruit is 1 ½” long.

  3. *Hardy kiwi is smoother, smaller and sweeter than their fuzzy southern cousins and does not need to be peeled.

  4. *The fruits size up by mid-Summer but are not tender and sweet enough to eat until late September or early October.

Planting:



  1. Plants need room to grow, at least 10 feet apart (as much as 16 feet apart if you have room)

  2. Plant the crown (where the roots join the main stem) of a new plant just ¼” to ½” above the soil to prevent rot

  3. Suitable supports include chain-link fences, trellises built against walls, and free-standing T-bar trellises made of posts and galvanized wire, supports should be at least six feet tall

Site and Soil:



  1. Full sun to part shade, at least six hours of sun is good

  2. Good soil drainage is very important because of their shallow, fleshy roots that are susceptible to crown and root rot in water saturated soil

Pruning:


  1. Prune to a central trunk with four arms trained either against a wall trellis or overhead support

  2. This year’s new wood becomes next year’s fruiting branches, spurs will fruit for two seasons

  3. In late Winter or early Spring, remove one-third of the limbs growing from the permanent arms, cut out wood that has fruited two seasons, damaged wood, and torturously twining current year’s growth

Fertilizer:



  1. Mulch with well-rotted manure or compost, approx. 30 pounds per vine (keep any mulch a few inches away from the crown)

  2. May also foliar feed with seaweed extract or fish emulsion until the plants set fruit

  3. Should not fertilize past mid-June or the resulting new growth may be too tender to survive the Fall frosts

Watering:



  1. Water, water, water! (many plantings expire because of thirst)

  2. The shallow roots and vigorous growth habits require regular irrigation

Mulch:


  1. After the first Fall frost, apply a foot of mulch

Spring Protection:



  1. If the vines leaf out and Spring frost threatens, cover them with sheets of plastic or blankets


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