martes, 6 de agosto de 2013

Kiwi, Kiwifruit

Name: Kiwifruit, Kiwi, Actinidia

Latin name: Actinidia chinensis, Actinidia deliciosa.

Foliage:  Deciduous

Mature height: this healthy woody bot can reach 29,53ft. length, gives the Kiwi fruit, and reaches shrub appearance using stakes and guiding systems for the fruit production.

Description: it is a climbing plant native from the Himalayan foothills, in the south of China, introduced in New Zealand in 1904 and since then, cultivated in many temperate regions for its edible fruit.

The name “kiwi” was given in New Zealand probably due to the similarity between the bloomy covered fruit and the Kiwi Bird.

The leaves, about 2.95 to 4.92 inches long, are alternate, long petioled, oval or nearly circular form.

The leaves

Flowers, about 0.98 inches to 1.97 inches diameter, are dioecious or bisexual and arise singly or in groups of three in the axils of the leaves. They have 5 or 6 white petals when opening, and then they turn on yellow.

                                            Female flower                                                Masculine flower                     

 To make easier the pollination process, and as they are dioecious (female and masculine flowers in different plant), both sexes should be closely seeded between them. The pollination is carried out by pollinating insects, or by us, taking a male flower and rubbing the stamens in a female flower. In commercial plantations hives are usually distributed to make easier this task.
Kiwi cultivation has proven to be very resistant to plagues and diseases.

Soil and location: kiwi cultivation requires deep soils that are well drained, permeable and rich in organic material.

It is a very sensitive cultivation to root suffocation; must avoid water swamp on the ground.


The Kiwi must be seeded in template climates, prefers a warm and humid climate in summer, and mild in winter.

It should be protected as well from dominant winds that can reduce both the anchor of the tree, and the activity of bees for pollination.

His ideal temperature is around 77,00º-86,00ºF (25-30ºC), and around 60% high relative humidity.

Irrigation: In their natural habitat receives a very high rainfall and humidity.

The quantity and quality of water is an important factor to keep in mind; if it is not enough, it would be necessary to put a permanent irrigation system.

The actinidia is very sensitive to water instability as it can lead to water losses in the foliage, ending by drying, loss of flowers and fruits.

Reproduction: The reproduction can be done in many different ways: by seeds, by cuttings or by grafts.

Pruning: This subjetc will be developed later in the blog.

Interesting notes: Male and female specimens must be seeded to obtain the fruits.

Usually it is recommended a ratio of 1 male specimen for 6-8 female specimens. For familiar cultivation I recommend to have two males to keep the production that year, in case one dies.
It has lots of fiber, more vitamin C than an orange; the kiwi is rich in lutein, a compound that reduces the risk of cancer, heart disease and cataracts. It has more potassium than bananas. It is also rich in copper, folic acid, magnesium and vitamin E, which helps with bone formation, brain and immune system development, controls blood pressure, controls heart activity and maintains fluids balance. 

Bee doing his job

Given the wide range of global producers of kiwi, New Zealand's producers decided to change the name of kiwi and rename it as "Zespri" to distinguish it from the others.

The kiwi is often used in cooking recipes.

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