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How To Grow Persimmons In Containers | Caring For Persimmon Tree in A Pot

Can persimmon trees grow in pots? Yes, persimmon tree does well in pots. Persimmons can be grown in containers if you don't have enough space in hour garden, provided you take care of the pot size, watering the plant and how to prune and repot the persimmon tree growing in a pot. 

The advantage of growing persimmons in containers is that you can move the plant indoors or in an unheated garage during winter, frost and snow thus keep them from severe damage.

Persimmon Tree Growing in a Pot
Fuyu Persimmon Tree Grown from a Seed in a Pot

Persimmons can be grown from both seeds (grow persimmons from seeds) and cuttings (grow persimmons from cuttings). Persimmon trees can grow up to 35-50 feet tall, but its size can be contained if grown in large pots. The above picture shows a 18 month old Fuyu persimmon tree grown from a seed.



Growing Persimmon Tree in Pots

Suitable Persimmon Varieties For Growing in Containers

  1. Tall persimmons varieties are not well suited even for extra-large pots. Dwarf persimmon varieties may be a better choice if growing in pots.
  2. Fuyu persimmon is a semi-dwarf or dwarf variety and is suitable for growing in pots. A dwarf fuyu persimmon tree is actually a persimmon seedling that has been grafted onto a dwarfing rootstock. The Fuyu persimmon tree grows best in USDA zones 7-10.
  3. Even the dwarf persimmon trees can grow to about 8-10 feet tall and wide. So only way to grow persimmon is containers is to prune the tree in a couple of years in late winter.

Growing Requirements of Persimmon Tree

Where to Plant: Light and Temperature

  1. The persimmon tree needs direct sun light for 6 hours or more with a temperature from 10 to 35°C (50 to 95°F ) to grow best. If growing in less sun periods or partial sun, it will grow less fruits.
  2. The plant's growth may stop below 5°C and it may die below 5°C for a long time, if the persimmon variety is not cold hardy. Russyanka is an Asian and American persimmon hybrid variety which is very cold hardy ( to – 25°F).
  3. Keep persimmon seedlings in indirect sunlight at a bright place with evenly moist soil.

Planting a Persimmon Tree

Plant or repot a persimmon tree from a nursery pot preferably in autumn (fall), so its roots get well established in the new environment before the spring when it will start to grow.

Pot Size

  1. The persimmon tree has long taproot, so use a large container, at least 24 inches wide and deep. You can also use a big wine barrel.
  2. You can begin with a smaller pot and later on transfer the plant into a bigger pot as the tree grows.
  3. The container should have many holes at its bottom to drain excess water. Put a layer of gravel below the soil at the bottom of the pot to help improve drainage.
  4. You may transplant in a container about three times the size of the root ball so that you may not need to repot to a bigger container for many years.

Soil For Growing Persimmons in Pots

  1. In containers, persimmons grows best in slightly acidic, free-draining and nutrition rich soil for good healthy growth and producing juicy fruits.
  2. Add washed coarse river sand in a good quality potting mix to make the soil mixture well-draining.
  3. Add lots of compost in the potting soil to make the soil rich in nutritions.
  4. The soil pH level for persimmons should ideally be between 6.5 and 7.5. Test the soil pH and amend its pH if not proper.
  5. Put a layer of composted cow manure followed by a thick layer of sugar cane mulch to retain moisture in the soil.

How To Care For Persimmon Tree in Containers

You may wonder how to care for a persimmon tree in a container. Continue reading below regarding how to water a persimmon tree, Pruning a persimmon tree and what is the best fertilizer for persimmons.

Watering Persimmon Tree in Container

  1. Water the plant when the top soil feels dry to touch.
  2. Young potted persimmon tree which is still establishing will need watering at least once a day during hot days. Keep the soil moist but not wet.
  3. Persimmon trees prefer deep root watering - water until it comes out from the holes at the bottom of the pot. Persimmon trees produce better fruit when watered regularly, 
  4. The plant will not tolerate soggy soils and may be killed if soggy or standing in water for many days. Do not use a saucer at the bottom of the pot for drainage of excess water ot if you use it then remove the water from it. The main cause of death for persimmon trees is too much water or soggy soil or standing water. 
  5. Water matured persimmon tree in a pot when top 2 inch soil gets dry.
  6. In winter, the plant may not need water for several days.

Mulch

  1. Use mulch for ground planted trees only.
  2. Maintain a 3-4 inch layer of mulch around the persimmon tree to retain soil moisture and improve soil quality.
  3. Apply a thick layer of mulch like sugarcane, pea straw or bark chips mulch 6 inch away from the trunk in early spring to retain soil moisture.

Fertilizer for Growing Persimmons in Containers

  1. Do not fertilize to the young persimmon tree as it is very sensitive to it.  Apply only cow manure.
  2. Feed your persimmon tree in container after a few years with a balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer in early spring. You can feed an organic fertilizer like like fish emulsion, alfalfa meal, kelp or seaweed extracts fertilizers to the Persimmon trees in early spring.
  3. Top dress persimmon tree in containers with compost or cow manure in early spring.
  4. Apply a liquid fertilizer in spring and summer, once in 4 weeks.
  5. If the leaves of persimmon tree is turning yellow (leaves begins yellowing at the edges and then spread towards the centre), it shows lack of potassium absorption in soil.

Pruning Persimmon Trees

  1. Pruning the persimmon tree help to give it a strong and healthy dense shape.
  2. By pruning a persimmon tree, you can keep it small.
  3. You can prune the plant when it is vey young at the seedling stage. This will encourage 3-4 new branches. You can again prune these new branches when they grow to a certain length. The fruit is borne on the tips of branches like mango fruits, so prune the tree to get more strong branches for more fruit.
  4. Late winter and early spring is the best time for pruning persimmon tree. You can prune in early September your persimmon tree in Australia.
  5. You should cut back any dead or diseased branches.
  6. Persimmons can be pruned heavily to create a hedge.
  7. You can prune the tree to get open vase shape like plums and pomegranate tree.
  8. Prune the foliage and branches that are in contact with soil to prevent pests.

Repotting a Persimmon Tree in Pot

  1. Every third years, you should take out the plant and add new soil and compost to the plant. Also trim the rotten roots and about 25% of bottom roots. Healthy roots are white in colour. This will keep the tree happy and healthy.
  2. When repotting, take care of the tape root. I cut the tape root by 25% in the first repotting to encourage multiple side roots which absorb nutrients and help the plant to grow/

Harvesting Persimmon Fruits

Traditionally, the persimmons are either male or female, so both trees are needed for the tree to bear fruit. But now new varieties self-fertile, self-pollinating, so only one tree will produce fruits.

You can harvest the persimmon fruits in autmn (fall) when they lose their green color and turn to orange, yellow or orange-red color.

Place on kitchen table, and they will become fully ripe within a couple of days. If you wish to hasten the ripening procedure, You can store the persimmons with a ripe apple or banana in a bag to speed up the ripening. 

Storing Persimmons 

Store the ripe astringent persimmons in the refrigerator for up to a month or in a freezer for up to 8 months. Non-astringent persimmons can be stored for a shorter period only.

Pests and Diseases

  1. Persimmon tree is relatively free from pest and diseases but mealybugs, scales and ants can be there.
  2. Use a spray of dilute neem oil to treat the insect problems.
  3. Prune the foliage and branches that are touching the soil to prevent pests.
  4. Always keep the potted persimmon tree clean of debris. 
  5. Squirrels, possums, deer, rats and birds love the persimmon fruit, so keep an eye on them. These animals are attracted to the sweet smell of the persimmon fruit, so pick the fruits before they are fully ripe on the tree. The fruit will ripen in a few days on the kitchen top.

Persimmon Tree Problems and Symptoms

Persimmon tree not fruiting

  1. Persimmon trees take 5 to 10 years to flower and bear fruit, depending on its type. American Persimmon can may not fruit even in 10 years. Oriental Persimmons bloom after 5 years.
  2. However, grafted persimmon trees bloom in 2 to 3 years.
  3. Persimmon trees produce better fruit when watered regularly.

Persimmon fruit drop

  1. The dropping of persimmon fruits may be due to water stress (under-watering), over-watering and too less sun light.
  2. Check the soil and water if it is dry. Move the persimmon in pot in sun.
  3. Over fertilization can prevent fruit developing on persimmon tree.

Persimmon tree leaves turning yellow

  1. Note that the persimmon tree is a deciduous tree that drops its leaves in winter and enters a dormant state. New plant leaves will appear in the spring.
  2. The yellowing of persimmon leaves turning brown and then fall from the tree can be due to too high pH of soil.
  3. Soil becoming too dry can drop the leaves early.

Video on How To Grow Persimmons from Cuttings


Grow Persimmon from cuttings video
Grow Persimmon tree in Pot video
How to grow persimmon from seed video
How to grow Persimmon from cuttings video