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Diospyros virginiana

Common Name(s):
Persimmon
Categories:
Native Plants, Trees
Comment:

The Diospyros virginiana is a deciduous tree that may grow 30 to 80 feet tall.  It is one of the easiest trees to identify in winter because of its distinctive thick, dark grey bark that is divided by furrows into square blocks (cobbled).  

The tree procudes fruit on female trees, the female tree needing a male pollinator in order to set fruit.  These edible fruits (1 to 2" in diameter) mature in the fall to an orange to reddish-purple color, and may persist on the tree into winter.  The fruit is quite astringent when green, but when ripe becomes sweet and my be eaten off the tree.  The fruit are used in syrups, jellies, ice cream and pies.  

The Persimmon is a member of the ebony family.  The wood is extremely hard and is used to make golf club heads, billiard cues and shoe lasts.

A deep tap root makes large plants difficult to transplant.

Regions:  Mountain, Piedmony, Coastal Plains

Seasons of Interest: 

     Leaves:  Fall      Bloom:  Spring     Fruit/Seed/Nut:  Fall

Seed: Berry

Play Value: Wildlife Enhancement

Wildlife Value:  Birds, small mammals, white-tailed deer, foxes, raccoons, and black bears eat the fruit of the Persimmon.  It is also moderately deer resistant.

Insects, Diseases, or Other Plant Problems:  Leaf spot may occur on the Persimmon.

Height:
30-60 ft.
Flower:
The Persimmon plants are usually dioecious (separate male and female trees) but some trees have perfect flowers. Fragrant, small, urn-shaped white to greenish-yellow flowers bloom in late spring, with the male flowers appearing in clusters and the female flower appearing solitary.
Zones:
4-9
Habit:
Deciduous
Site:
The Persimmon tree is easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. It has a somewhat wide rage of soil tolerance, beet prefers moist, sandy soils.
Texture:
Medium
Form:
Pyramidal in youth; slender, oval rounded crown
Exposure:
Sun to partial shade; prefers moist, well drained soil but tolerates dry soil
Fruit:
Yellowish to orange fruit on female trees in fall
Width:
20-35 ft.
Growth Rate:
Slow to moderate
Leaf:
The Persimmon has ovate to elliptic alternate leaves (2-6" long) that have a smooth margin. They are a glossy dark green above and turn a yellowish-green in autumn. They may sometimes turn a reddish purple in the fall. The leaf is sometimes used in making teas.
Tags:
play, cpp, deciduous, birds, playground, butterflies, rain garden, highly beneficial coastal plants, children’s garden

NCCES plant id: 477

Diospyros virginiana Diospyros virginiana
Katja Schulz, CC BY - 2.0
Diospyros virginiana Diospyros virginiana
Fritz Flohr Reynolds, CC BY-NC-2.0
Diospyros virginiana Diospyros virginiana
Mollie Freilicher, CC BY-NC-ND - 2.0
Diospyros virginiana Diospyros virginiana
Mollie Freilicher, CC BY-NC-ND - 2.0
Diospyros virginiana Diospyros virginiana
Malcolm Manners, CC BY - 2.0