Persimmon - No Fruit?
Doug Akers, Boone County ANR Extension Educator,
Do you have a persimmon, Diospyros virginiana, tree
that has never produced fruit? Perhaps, you have a male tree but
no female tree in the vicinity. Or, perhaps you have a female tree,
with no male tree in the vicinity. Persimmon flowers are primarily
dioecious; that is, each sex is on a separate plant. However, with
persimmon trees, sometimes both sexes are present on the same tree
(according to Michael Dirr). And, persimmons rely on bees to transfer
pollen from the male flowers to the female flowers in order to
produce fruit. Honeybees generally travel a mile from their colony;
with perhaps a maximum of three miles.
Persimmons bloom in late May and early June in Indiana.
At flowering, you can determine whether a particular tree is a
male, female, or a little of both. The quickest and easiest way
to determine the difference without differentiating between stamens
and pistils, is that the female flowers (see pictures) have relatively
large green leaf-like structures (calyx) above the flowers (which
are still noticeable above the developing fruit a few weeks later
from the female flowers). The leafy structures above the male flowers
are much smaller and held tighter to the flower (see picture).
Click image to enlarge
Bee on male flower
Flower close up
Female developing fruit