How to Prune Kiwi Plants

Overview

The long, woody vines of the kiwi plant are fast-growing and should be trained along a strong, large, raised arbor to control their growth and improve their fruit yield. The lateral method of pruning will usually provide the greatest amount of fruit on vines that have been arbor trained. Kiwis must be carefully pruned, especially in winter, to encourage fruit production. Without pruning, the vine is likely not to fruit at all.

Step 1

Train canes to grow laterally from the main vine across the arbor. Space these lateral canes every 24 to 30 inches and remove any canes in between.

Step 2

Prune these lateral canes to about 4 feet in length or to just past the outside edge of the arbor, during the first growing season.

Step 3

Prune the lateral canes again, in winter, when they are dormant, to a length that has about 8 to 10 buds.

Step 4

Allow the lateral canes to fruit at the bud junctions during the second growing season.

Step 5

Prune new canes that form from the buds on the trimmed laterals to a length that has 8 to 10 buds on each cane, during the second growing season.

Step 6

Prune the laterals back to leave one fruit-bearing cane on either side of the lateral closest to the main vine, during winter.

Step 7

Allow the canes to fruit at the bud junctions during the third growing season.

Step 8

Prune the secondary canes resulting from the buds on the canes left from last season to a length of 8 to 10 buds during the third growing season.

Step 9

Remove any lateral canes that have fruited twice, from the main vine, during winter.

Things You'll Need

  • Strong vine arbor
  • Pruning shears

References

  • Kiwi Fruit - Actinidia deliciosa
  • "All About Citrus & Subtropical Fruits"; Ortho Books; 1985
Keywords: pruning kiwi, kiwi propagation, kiwi plant care

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In Jacksonville, Fla., Frank Whittemore is a content strategist with over a decade of experience as a hospital corpsman in the U.S. Navy and a licensed paramedic. He has over 15 years experience writing for several Fortune 500 companies. Whittemore writes on topics in medicine, nature, science, technology, the arts, cuisine, travel and sports.