Kaki (Diospyros Kaki ‘Fuyu’)

Plant: Table of Contents

Kaki (Diospyros kaki ‘Fuyu’): A Comprehensive Guide


The Kaki tree, scientifically known as Diospyros kaki ‘Fuyu’, is a splendid fruit-bearing tree native to China, and belongs to the family Ebenaceae. The tree is famous for its vibrant, sweet, and juicy persimmon fruit, which is consumed fresh or used in various culinary applications. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the various aspects of the Kaki tree, including its culture, uses, maintenance requirements, propagation, and much more. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting your journey in horticulture, this guide will provide valuable insights into cultivating and caring for the exceptional Kaki tree.

What is Kaki (Diospyros kaki ‘Fuyu’)?


The Kaki tree, Diospyros kaki ‘Fuyu’, is a deciduous tree that can reach a height of 20 to 30 feet at maturity. It is renowned for its striking appearance, attractive foliage, and delicious, vibrant orange to red fruit. The fruit of the Kaki tree is known as persimmon, and the ‘Fuyu’ cultivar is particularly coveted for its non-astringent, sweet, and crisp fruit. Additionally, the Kaki tree is popular for its ornamental value, adding beauty and interest to gardens and landscapes.

Key Takeaways – Kaki (Diospyros kaki ‘Fuyu’)

Before we delve into the detailed aspects of the Kaki tree, here are some key takeaways about this exquisite plant:

  • Scientific Name: Diospyros kaki ‘Fuyu’
  • Common Names: Kaki, Fuyu persimmon
  • Family: Ebenaceae
  • Fruit Type: Non-astringent persimmon
  • Cultivar: ‘Fuyu’
  • Uses: Culinary purposes, ornamental value
  • Origins: China
  • Characteristics: Deciduous, vibrant orange to red fruit, attractive foliage

Now that we have a general overview of the Kaki tree, let’s explore the various aspects of its culture, uses, and maintenance requirements.


Cultivating the Kaki tree involves understanding its specific cultural requirements, including aspects such as water, sunlight, fertilizer, soil, and pruning.


The Kaki tree has moderate water needs, particularly during its active growth and fruit development periods. Adequate watering is essential, especially during dry spells, to ensure optimal fruit production and overall tree health. When establishing a young Kaki tree, it is crucial to provide consistent moisture to support root development and establishment.


Being a fruit-bearing tree, the Kaki tree thrives in full sun exposure. Providing at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily is crucial for robust growth, fruit development, and the overall health of the tree. Adequate sunlight promotes photosynthesis, which is essential for the production of high-quality fruit.


Proper fertilization is vital for the Kaki tree to support its growth, flowering, and fruiting. When it comes to fertilization, using a balanced fertilizer with an N-P-K ratio of 10-10-10 or similar is recommended. In early spring, before new growth emerges, apply the fertilizer according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Avoid over-fertilization, as this can lead to excessive vegetative growth at the expense of fruit production.


The Kaki tree thrives in well-draining, fertile soil that is slightly acidic to neutral in pH. Loamy or sandy loam soils are ideal for promoting healthy root development and efficient nutrient uptake. Prior to planting, it is beneficial to amend the soil with organic matter such as compost to improve its structure, fertility, and water-retention capacity.


Pruning plays a vital role in shaping the Kaki tree, promoting air circulation, and removing dead or diseased wood. Prune the tree during its dormant season, typically in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins. Focus on removing crossing branches, water sprouts, and maintaining an open canopy to facilitate light penetration and fruit production.

Now that we have covered the cultural aspects, let’s explore the different uses of the Kaki tree and its prized persimmon fruit.


The Kaki tree offers a multitude of uses, ranging from its delectable fruit to its ornamental value in landscapes and gardens. Let’s take a closer look at the various uses of the Kaki tree:

  • Culinary Purposes: The Fuyu persimmon fruit is widely esteemed for its sweet, non-astringent flesh, which can be consumed fresh, dried, or used in a variety of culinary applications. From salads and desserts to jams and beverages, the versatile persimmon fruit adds a unique and delightful flavor to numerous dishes.

  • Ornamental Value: Beyond its fruit-bearing capabilities, the Kaki tree is valued for its ornamental attributes. Its attractive foliage, striking fruit, and picturesque form make it a desirable addition to gardens, orchards, and urban landscapes. The vibrant orange to red fruit adds visual interest and creates a stunning display in autumn.

  • Wildlife Attraction: The fruit of the Kaki tree is a valuable food source for wildlife, including birds and small mammals. As such, the tree contributes to supporting local biodiversity and ecological balance.

With its diverse uses and benefits, the Kaki tree undoubtedly holds a special place in horticulture and culinary practices. However, to ensure its optimal growth and fruit production, it is crucial to understand and fulfill its maintenance requirements.


Maintaining the Kaki tree involves addressing various aspects such as watering, fertilization, pruning, and pest management. Here’s a comprehensive look at the essential maintenance practices for nurturing healthy and productive Kaki trees.


To support the Kaki tree’s growth and fruit production, it is essential to provide regular, deep watering, particularly during dry spells. When establishing a young Kaki tree, pay close attention to its water needs and ensure that the root ball remains consistently moist. As the tree matures, monitor soil moisture and adjust your watering schedule based on environmental conditions.


Optimal sunlight exposure is crucial for the Kaki tree to thrive and produce high-quality fruit. Position the tree in a location that receives ample sunlight, ensuring that it benefits from direct sun for the majority of the day. Additionally, periodically inspect the tree’s canopy to assess its exposure to sunlight and make any necessary adjustments to promote uniform growth and fruit development.


Applying a balanced fertilizer at the right time and in the correct amounts is essential for supporting the Kaki tree’s nutritional requirements. Before the onset of new growth in early spring, apply a slow-release, balanced fertilizer according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Regularly monitor the tree’s growth and foliage color to gauge its response to fertilization and make any necessary adjustments.


Pruning the Kaki tree is an important aspect of its maintenance, contributing to its overall health, shape, and fruit production. During the dormant season, remove any dead, diseased, or damaged wood, and eliminate any crossing branches to optimize air circulation. Additionally, shaping the tree through selective pruning helps maintain its form and supports fruit-bearing wood.

Pest and Disease Management

Vigilant pest and disease management is crucial for preserving the health and vitality of the Kaki tree. Monitor the tree regularly for signs of pests such as aphids, scale insects, and mites, and employ appropriate control measures if necessary. Additionally, keep an eye out for common diseases such as leaf spot and anthracnose, and promptly address any issues to prevent their spread.

By adhering to the essential maintenance practices and addressing the Kaki tree’s specific needs, you can foster a thriving and bountiful tree that brings forth an abundant harvest of delicious persimmon fruit.


Propagating the Kaki tree can be achieved through various methods, including seed propagation, grafting, and air layering. Each propagation method offers distinct advantages and considerations, catering to different preferences and circumstances.

Seed Propagation

Propagating the Kaki tree from seeds is a viable option, particularly for those seeking to cultivate new varieties or rootstock. To propagate the tree from seeds, collect fresh, viable seeds from ripe persimmon fruit, and plant them in a well-draining growing medium. Keep the soil consistently moist and provide warm temperatures to facilitate germination. Over time, the seeds will sprout, giving rise to new Kaki seedlings.


Grafting is a common method of propagating Kaki trees, especially when desiring to maintain specific cultivars or rootstock characteristics. Utilize scion wood from a desirable Kaki tree and graft it onto a compatible rootstock, such as Diospyros lotus, to propagate a genetically identical tree. Grafting allows for the precise reproduction of desirable traits and is widely practiced in commercial orchards and nurseries.

Air Layering

Air layering presents another propagation method for the Kaki tree, providing a means to establish new plants from existing trees. Select a healthy, vigorous branch and make a small incision to remove a section of bark. Enclose the exposed area with moist growing medium and protect it with plastic wrap to encourage the growth of new roots. Once roots have formed, separate the rooted section from the parent tree to cultivate a new Kaki tree.

Whether you opt for seed propagation, grafting, or air layering, each method offers an opportunity to propagate and expand the presence of the remarkable Kaki tree in diverse landscapes and settings.

Container Popularity

The Kaki tree’s suitability for container cultivation makes it an attractive choice for gardeners with limited space or those seeking to grow fruit trees on patios, balconies, or other confined areas. Cultivating the Kaki tree in containers not only offers practical benefits but also allows for easy management and mobility. Let’s explore the factors contributing to the container popularity of the Kaki tree.


The moderate size of the Kaki tree makes it well-suited for container cultivation, as it can be maintained at a manageable height and spread. Compact and dwarf cultivars are particularly appealing for container growth, offering an added degree of adaptability in diverse urban and suburban environments.

Ornamental Value

Beyond its fruit-bearing capabilities, the Kaki tree boasts ornamental attributes that make it an aesthetically pleasing addition to container gardens and outdoor spaces. The vibrant foliage, picturesque form, and delightful persimmon fruit contribute to its visual appeal, creating a striking focal point in container plantings.


Growing the Kaki tree in containers offers versatility and flexibility, allowing for easy relocation, placement in various microclimates, and integration into different design schemes. Whether on a patio, deck, or rooftop garden, the containerized Kaki tree adapts to varying environments and provides an opportunity to experience its beauty and harvest its delectable fruit.

The container popularity of the Kaki tree underscores its adaptability and appeal, offering an array of possibilities for incorporating this exceptional fruit-bearing tree into diverse gardening and landscaping endeavors.

Container Maintenance

Cultivating the Kaki tree in containers requires specific maintenance practices to ensure its well-being, productivity, and long-term viability. From watering and fertilization to pruning and winter care, container maintenance is essential for nurturing vigorous and fruitful Kaki trees.


Containerized Kaki trees necessitate regular watering to maintain adequate moisture levels, especially during warm weather and dry periods. Monitor soil moisture closely and water the tree when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. Avoid overwatering, as excessive moisture retention in containers can lead to root rot and other complications.


Providing balanced fertilization is critical for containerized Kaki trees to meet their nutritional requirements and support robust growth and fruit production. Use a slow-release, balanced fertilizer formulated for fruit trees, and apply it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Periodically assess the tree’s growth and foliage appearance to gauge its response to fertilization.


Regular pruning is essential for managing the growth and form of containerized Kaki trees, optimizing their productivity and aesthetics. Remove any dead, diseased, or overcrowded branches, and conduct selective pruning to maintain an open canopy and support the development of fruit-bearing wood. Prune the tree during its dormant season to minimize stress and maximize its regenerative capacity.

Winter Care

In regions with cold winters, providing adequate winter care is crucial for the survival and vitality of containerized Kaki trees. Protect the tree from freezing temperatures by relocating it to a sheltered area, such as a garage or shed, or insulating the container with materials like burlap or frost blankets. Additionally, reduce watering during the dormant period to prevent moisture-related issues in the colder months.

By adhering to specific maintenance practices tailored to container cultivation, you can cultivate flourishing and productive Kaki trees in containers, reaping the rewards of their delightful persimmon fruit and ornamental appeal.

Common Diseases

Despite being relatively resilient, the Kaki tree is susceptible to certain diseases that can impact its health and fruit production. Understanding the common diseases affecting the Kaki tree, their symptoms, and appropriate management strategies is instrumental in preserving the tree’s vitality and ensuring fruitful harvests.

Leaf Spot

Leaf spot, caused by fungal pathogens such as Cercospora and Mycosphaerella, manifests as small, dark spots on the tree’s foliage. The affected leaves may exhibit yellowing, browning, and premature defoliation, compromising the tree’s overall vigor and photosynthetic capacity. To manage leaf spot, maintain proper sanitation, improve air circulation, and consider fungicidal applications if the disease persists or progresses.


Anthracnose is another fungal disease that can affect the Kaki tree, causing irregular, sunken lesions on leaves, twigs, and fruit. The disease thrives in humid conditions and can lead to defoliation, poor fruit quality, and overall tree stress. Implement cultural practices such as pruning to enhance air circulation, remove and destroy infected plant material, and consider fungicidal treatments if anthracnose poses a significant threat to the tree’s health.

Root Rot

Root rot, typically attributed to overly saturated or poorly-drained soil, can negatively impact the Kaki tree’s root system, leading to stunted growth, wilting, and eventual decline. To mitigate root rot, improve soil drainage, avoid overwatering, and ensure proper soil structure and aeration. Additionally, selecting disease-resistant rootstock can provide an added layer of protection against root rot and related soil-borne pathogens.

By recognizing the symptoms of common diseases affecting the Kaki tree and being proactive in their management, you can safeguard the tree’s well-being and promote a thriving and resilient orchard or garden.

Disease Diagnosis

Effective disease diagnosis entails a careful examination of the Kaki tree’s symptoms, including foliage appearance, fruit quality, and overall growth patterns. By paying close attention to noticeable signs and understanding the underlying causes, you can accurately diagnose diseases and implement targeted management strategies.

Visual Symptoms

Inspect the tree’s foliage for any abnormal spots, lesions, discoloration, or signs of wilting and premature defoliation. Additionally, assess the quality of the fruit for irregular blemishes, rot, or malformations. Observing the overall growth and vigor of the tree provides valuable insights into its health and potential disease presence.

Environmental Conditions

Consider the prevailing environmental conditions, such as temperature, humidity, and soil moisture, as they can influence disease development and progression. Assess the tree’s growing environment, including soil drainage, sunlight exposure, and air circulation, to identify potential factors contributing to disease susceptibility.

Laboratory Analysis

For in-depth disease diagnosis, consider conducting laboratory analysis of plant samples to identify specific pathogens and confirm disease presence. Submit samples of affected foliage, fruit, or roots to diagnostic laboratories or extension services for thorough testing and accurate disease identification.

Implementing a comprehensive approach to disease diagnosis equips you with the knowledge and insights needed to formulate targeted disease management strategies, ensuring the optimal health and productivity of the Kaki tree.

Common Pests

In addition to diseases, the Kaki tree faces potential threats from various pests that can compromise its well-being and fruit production. Familiarizing yourself with common pests, their identification, and suitable control measures is crucial for preserving the tree’s vitality and mitigating pest-related damage.


Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects that can infest the Kaki tree, feeding on its sap and causing foliage distortion, stunted growth, and the secretion of sticky honeydew. Implement insecticidal soaps, horticultural oils, or biological control agents to manage aphid populations and prevent their detrimental impact on the tree’s health.

Scale Insects

Scale insects, characterized by their protective waxy covering, can colonize the stems, branches, and foliage of the Kaki tree, sapping its energy and impeding its growth. Introduce natural predators, deploy horticultural oils, or use systemic insecticides to combat scale insect infestations and minimize their damage to the tree.


Spider mites and other mite species can pose a threat to the Kaki tree, causing stippling, discoloration, and premature leaf drop. Employing miticidal sprays, fostering beneficial predators, or enhancing environmental conditions to discourage mite activity can help manage mite infestations and limit their impact on the tree’s vitality.

By actively monitoring the Kaki tree for signs of pest activity and implementing targeted pest management strategies, you can safeguard the tree from potential pest-related harm and sustain its overall health and productivity.

Botanist’s Tips

Drawing from botanical knowledge and practical insights, here are some invaluable tips for effectively cultivating and caring for the exceptional Kaki tree:

  1. Site Selection: Choose a well-drained, sunny location with adequate space for the Kaki tree to thrive and reach its mature size, ensuring optimal growing conditions and fruit production.

  2. Pollination: Consider the role of pollination in persimmon fruit development, and assess the potential need for multiple trees or compatible cultivars to ensure successful pollination and fruit set.

  3. Cold Protection: In regions with frost or freezing temperatures, implement suitable measures to protect the Kaki tree from cold-related damage, such as frost cloth, tree wraps, or temporary insulation.

  4. Beneficial Companions: Explore companion planting options to enhance the Kaki tree’s growing environment, attract beneficial insects, and promote biodiversity within the orchard or garden.

  5. Regular Monitoring: Maintain a regular schedule for monitoring the tree’s growth, foliage appearance, and fruit development, allowing early detection of any emerging issues and proactive intervention.

  6. Training and Support: Provide structural support for young Kaki trees, and consider training methods such as espalier or trellising to manage growth and improve fruit accessibility.

By integrating these botanist’s tips into your cultivation practices, you can elevate your approach to growing and maintaining the Kaki tree, nurturing thriving and productive trees that yield an abundant harvest of delectable persimmon fruit.

Fun Facts

To further appreciate the remarkable Kaki tree and its intriguing characteristics, consider the following fun facts about this captivating fruit-bearing tree:

  1. The Kaki tree is celebrated for its symbolic significance in Asian cultures, where it holds associations with longevity, good luck, and prosperity.
  2. Although technically classified as a berry, the persimmon fruit exhibits a unique flavor profile, combining sweetness with subtle hints of spice and honey.
  3. Kaki trees are known for their striking fall foliage, featuring vibrant shades of yellow, orange, and red that add visual spl
Picture of Peter Taylors

Peter Taylors

Expert botanist who loves plants. His expertise spans taxonomy, plant ecology, and ethnobotany. An advocate for plant conservation, he mentors and educates future botanists, leaving a lasting impact on the field.