Persimmon, known botanically as Diospyros kaki, is a species of fall fruiting deciduous tree grown for its sweet fruit and finely-grained, smooth hardwood. There are many cultivars, varieties and hybrid varieties of persimmons grown commercially and in home gardens. Closely related varieties can vary in fruit flavor, skin color, shape and size, but all ripen and are harvest-ready sometime between October and November. Persimmon trees canopies spread to a maximum of 20 feet and grow to between 15 and 60 feet in height at maturity depending on the cultivar, climate and cultural conditions.
Hachiya persimmon is a self-pollinating tree that produces large fruit that reach 3-3/4 inches in length and 3-1/2 inches in width at maturity. The skins is a deep orange to slight coral red. The interior flesh is deep yellow sometimes with a black streak running through it. Hachiya is slightly elongated and tapering in shape, resembling an acorn. It is a nearly seedless variety and has an upright growth habit and full canopy, making it an attractive flowering garden tree as well as a fruit bearing tree.
Fuyugaki, or Fuyu, persimmon produces medium-to-large fruits that are squat, round and with four semi-flat sides. The kin is a bright red-orange, and they are roughly 2 inches long and 2-3/4 inches in width when mature and ready for harvest. Fuyu are seedless when self pollinated and have seeds when cross pollinated. It is more cold sensitive than other varieties but is thought to produce high-quality fruit that is unusually firm but very sweet when at peak ripeness.
Eureka persimmon trees develop mid-to-large size fruits that are squat and round or slightly oval with a bright coral red skin and orange-to-red interior flesh. The fruit grows to between 2 and 3 inches in diameter. The tree itself is on the smaller side relative to other varieties but produces large harvests. While is does not require cross pollination, it does have seeds. It is the most commonly planted commercial persimmon in Texas and is popular in Florida as well.
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