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Chinese Gooseberry Actinidia chinensis

Other Common Name(s):

Other plants called Chinese Gooseberry:

Phonetic Spelling
ak-tih-NID-ee-uh chi-NEN-sis
This plant is an invasive species in North Carolina
Description

Chinese gooseberry is a rapidly growing woody deciduous climbing vine in the Actinidiaceae family.  It can be grown in a variety of soil and pH conditions but prefers moist, loamy, neutral, well-drained soil.  It will produce its fruits in both full sun and semi-shade, however, the best fruit production will occur in full sun.  Its rapid growth rate makes it a great choice for sturdy trellises, arbors,  fences, or walls.  Slightly more cold hardy than Actinidia kolomikta and Actinidia melanandra.

It can be found growing in thickets and oak forests on slopes or in ravines.  This dioecious climber has either male or female flowers.  For propagation, both need to be grown to be pollinated by bees and insects.  

The leaves and fruit are both edible.  The flavorful fruits which are rich with vitamin C contain small seeds that are typically eaten with the fruit.  When slightly soft under pressure, they are ready to eat.  Very soft fruit is considered too ripe and not edible.

Flower buds emerge from last year's stems, so pruning in the fall or winter is discouraged.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No serious insect or disease problems.  Occasional root-knot nematodes, thrips, passion vine hopper, crown gall, root rot may affect the plant.  They are not cold hardy.  Its rapid growth can quickly get out of hand if not closely monitored.

Compare this Plant to: Actinidia kolomiktaActinidia melanandra

 

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bees#fragrant#sun#deciduous#fall color#full sun#partial shade#fragrant flowers#wildlife plant#nectar plant#climbing#fall interest#trellis#berries#playground#fast growing#fences#trellises#children's garden#arbors#edible fruits#pollinator plant
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bees#fragrant#sun#deciduous#fall color#full sun#partial shade#fragrant flowers#wildlife plant#nectar plant#climbing#fall interest#trellis#berries#playground#fast growing#fences#trellises#children's garden#arbors#edible fruits#pollinator plant
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Actinidia
    Species:
    chinensis
    Family:
    Actinidiaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    East Asia, China
    Wildlife Value:
    Flowers are pollinated by bees.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Edible fruit
    Fragrance
    Textural
    Wildlife Food Source
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    No serious insect or disease problems.
    Climbing Method:
    Twining
    Edibility:
    Fruit is a fuzzy brown large edible berry.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Edible
    Vine
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Climbing
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Berry
    Fruit Length:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    The egg-shaped fruit is a fuzzy brown large edible berry that is formed on female plants. They are formed on second-year wood and fruit spurs of older wood.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Gold/Yellow
    White
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Saucer
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Fragrant white blooms appear in May. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown to get fruit) and are pollinated by bees. Flower open white, then fade to creamy yellow.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Showy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Cordate
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    When young, the foliage appears to have a halo, which is actually the short hairs. As the foliage ages, the hairs will no longer be present. The blades are thick and have a lightly impressed vein on top and more prominent raised veins on the underside. New growth can be showy.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Green
    Light Brown
    Bark Description:
    The new bark is green, turning dark brown quickly. As the plant ages, the bark is a lighter brown. Paper can be made from the bark.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    The stems are whip-like, and twining. The branchlets are reddish in color. Young branchlets are white pubescent to brownish.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Patio
    Recreational Play Area
    Vertical Spaces
    Landscape Theme:
    Children's Garden
    Edible Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Barrier
    Screen/Privacy
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Diseases
    Insect Pests
    Problems:
    Invasive Species