How to Grow Kiwi Fruit From Seeds
Kiwifruit are also known as Chinese gooseberries.
Kiwifruit is a deciduous vine, native to China. The fruit, the size of an egg with a fuzzy exterior, requires a long, warm growing season to mature — at least 150 days. Kiwifruit vines also require a sturdy support system such as a pergola, arbor or t-bar trellis system. Install the trellis system before planting the kiwi into the garden. Choose the location carefully, as the kiwifruit plants require full sun in an area that is out of frost pockets. A northern exposure is ideal.
Remove the kiwifruit seeds, wash them under running water to remove any traces of sugar and lay them on a paper towel to dry for two days.
Add moist perlite to a sandwich bag until it is one quarter full. Push the kiwi seeds into the perlite, seal the bag and place it in the refrigerator where it should remain for four months.
Remove the seeds from the perlite and plant them in a nursery pot filled with moist, sterile potting soil. Push them 1/8 inch into the soil. Cover the pot with plastic wrap and place it in an area with bright, indirect sun.
Remove the plastic wrap when the kiwifruit seeds germinate and cover the surface of the soil with a 1/8-inch layer of sand. Keep the soil slightly moist.
Transplant each seedling into its own planting pot, filled with moist, sterile potting mix, when it has four sets of leaves. Keep the pots in a bright area and maintain moist soil.
Transplant the seedlings into the garden when they are 6 inches or taller and all danger of frost has passed.
Amend the soil in the planting area by adding 3 inches of compost and mixing it to a depth of 10 inches.
Plant the kiwifruit vines 10 feet apart. Choose the strongest cane on each one and tie it to the support post so that it will grow straight up. Do not allow it to twist around the support post.
Fertilize the kiwifruit in the spring of its second year in the garden. Use 2 oz. of 10-10-10 fertilizer scattered around each kiwifruit plant. Add 2 oz. to this amount in each subsequent year until you are giving them the maximum, 8 oz.
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