Grape size Kiwi Vines

Discussion in 'Fruit and Vegetable Gardening' started by barb s, Oct 25, 2007.

  1. barb s

    barb s Active Member

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    I have a large, well established kiwi vine, that produces thousands of grape size kiwi. (not the fuzzy kind) My question is..... Do I need to protect it from the harsh winter .
    I live in the fraser canyon, British Columbia.

    Thanks for any advise

    Barb
     
  2. smivies

    smivies Active Member

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    No, yours is likely Actinidia argutaor Actinidia kolomikta, both of which are hardy to at least zone 4. Not sure how far up the canyon you are, but I don't think you're colder than zone 4.
     
  3. Eric La Fountaine

    Eric La Fountaine Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    It is probably Actinidia arguta 'Issai', not quite as hardy as the species, but hardy to Zone 6. To my knowledge kiwis are generally dioecious (having male and female flowers on separate plants. 'Issai' is a self-fertile variety. Do you have more than one vine?
     
  4. barb s

    barb s Active Member

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    Hi Eric,

    I have two vines about 6 ft apart. The vines grow together on a large trelis.
    I just bought the property and know nothing about Kiwi's. It appears to not have been pruned for sometime, although I harvested about 80 LBS of delisious large grape size kiwi's two weeks ago.

    barb s
     
  5. Eric La Fountaine

    Eric La Fountaine Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Then it could be the A. arguta or A. kolomikta and as smivies pointed out they are even hardier. 'Issai' is very commonly planted, so is a likely guess. When it blooms next year, check out the flowers to see if they are male, female or both. The fact that the plant is doing so well, makes it seem likely that it is hardy, because last winter was rough in this region.

    Actinidia is vigorous and even if the vines were damaged the plant would grow back quickly from the roots. It can't really hurt to lay a blanket of mulch around the plant for winter. Who knows what kind of weather we are in for these days.
     
  6. barb s

    barb s Active Member

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    Thanks for the info, Now I don't want to sound too uninformed , but this is so new to me. When can I expect blooms, and how do I tell by the flowers if it's a male or female or both? For that matter why is this important? I was under the impression that there HAD to be both male and female to produce fruit.

    I appreciate everyones patience with my knowlege of Kiwi's..... wait till you hear all my questions on grapes !


    Barb
     
  7. Eric La Fountaine

    Eric La Fountaine Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    The vines will bloom in the spring. I suggested checking if they were male or female, because unlike most other kiwis 'Issai' is self fertile. This could help determine what variety you have (although there a few other bisexual varieties). You may want to look up some more advice on kiwi care on the forums and the web. Do an image search to see the male and female flowers.

    It may not be important to you really, I am usually happy when I get a lot of good fruit no matter what the name of the plant.
     
  8. Tylerj

    Tylerj Member

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    Here is a picture of my Issai bloom this spring. An easy way to tell whether your plant is male or female is that the female flower will have a green bulb in the centre when the bloom opens that will grow into the kiwi fruit once pollinated.

    From what I have read the "Issai" is not self fertile per say... It does not produce pollen that in turn pollinates the flowers. It is suggested that the Issai variety will produce fruit parthenocarpically (sp??) but will probably only do this once the plant is fully mature. My 3 vines which grew to about 6 feet in their 2nd growing season and produced close to 100 blooms in total (with no male arguta blooms present) did not produce any fruit. All the flowers died off with no kiwi. Even with mature Issai vines that do produce fruit without a pollinator I read that the fruit are smaller and less in quantity then when a cross pollinating male arguta is used.
     

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