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propagating Hardy Kiwifruit

propagating Hardy Kiwifruit

I am just wondering if anyone has had any success in propagating the Hardy Kiwifruit(Actinidia arguta). I have read in Loui Glowinskis book some thing about putting in dormant cuttings upside down in a pot, but this sounds a little strange to me. Instead I have taken some spring growth cuttings and put them in a pot, put the pot in an old tarrerium (to increase the humidity) with bottom heat. They have been in for a bit over a week and look good so far.
Does anyone have any experience/advice for propaging these?
I am so impressed so far with this plant in its beauty and vigour, so i would love to put a few more around the place. Hopfully the fruit will be good as well.

The following thread was started by Paul W on November 16, 2003 at 6:04 pm PST

Dormant cuttings

I've read that normal kiwifruits grow quite easy from cuttings in winter, I guess the whole genus would be the same, makes you wonder why they graft them. Anyway one thing I can tell you for sure that I have pots of kiwifruit seedlings (green and yellows) that is so thick it looks like a golf course or moss or something, 1 fruit per pot :) that turned into 100's of seedlings so you could try that too

The above followup was added by Jason on November 16, 2003 at 7:08 pm PST.

Seedling power!

Hi Paul,
I agree with Jason, if you have seed, you're in! I've grown the gold variety and the local 'cocktail' kiwis from seed and once they're away, you can't kill them with a hammer!

They are drought proof and vigorous so position them carefully. The main reason for grafting them are commercial concerns about flowering time, vigorous rootstocks and fast fruiting. Not a major for the back yard.

Semi hard wood cuttings in winter are the way to go, just like grape cuttings (don't know about upside down!)

An interest aside is that in Chinese medicine the roots are used as a sedative for large cats. Try offering your cat some pulverised root - mine goes berserk - chews it and then has a go at me. Obviously must do something to them!

The above followup was added by Nigel(NZ) on November 17, 2003 at 6:55 pm PST.


Thanks, guys i might try some seeds, but i guess the only problem is not knowing their sex until they are mature.
The good news is my cuttings still look good so ive got my fingers crossed.

The above followup was added by Paul W on November 19, 2003 at 5:41 pm PST.


In early spring before they leaf out, I usually prune the branches off my actinidia arguta.
There is usually so much to cut back that I
either turn the cut vines into xmas wreaths or I just stick them in the ground about 6 inches deep. I've found that almost all of them sprout and grow readily even before they've developed any type of root system.

They don't always transplant too well if you try and dig them up during the first year growing season as the roots are delicate and not very extensive.

By the way, the scions are not planted upside down but the leaf nodes that attach to the main stem point downwards so that it appears as if the branch is upside down.

Hope this helps. By the way, the California Rare Fruit Growers Assoc. has scion exchanges early in March where you can obtain scion wood for lots of differernt cultivars.....assuming that you're in California.

Good Luck,

The above followup was added by Richard on November 20, 2003 at 12:20 am PST.


Fantastic! Thanks for your comments Richard. This is good to know that they propagate so easily as i would like to put a few in around the place.
Tell me, how do you find the taste of the fruit itself?
Unfortunatly California is a long way from home, other wise i would love to attend a scion exchange.


The above followup was added by Paul W on November 20, 2003 at 5:46 pm PST.

Upside down cuttings

Paul, Jackie French also says in her book to plant the cuttings upside down, 4cm? under the soil then dig them up in spring and plant out the ones with roots right way up, still haven't found any reason why they say plant them upside down, she also rekons kiwi's grow very well and have good fruit from seed

The above followup was added by Jason on November 21, 2003 at 10:19 pm PST.

Starting Kiwi's from seed

In our California Rare Fruit Growers local Chapter, we are lucky to have a professional horticultural, genetics, research nursery person, with a PhD, who immigrated from Russia.

He said while in Russia they did extensive research on Kiwi's. They found out that half the seedlings or more will be male, and the females not only are not like the parents, they actually jump way back, and the possibility of getting a seedling with good or Superior fruit is very slim and kiwis may well be like this, for the most part.

Of course too, I was reading online, that they alway say the same thing about apples, you only get one good apple out of 10,000 seeds. But I found a article online, and it was saying, that did not mean you could not get good edible fruit from a fair percentage of the seedlings. The guy was saying, and I can't attest to know how accurate he is. He said yes, you only get 1 out of 10,000, which meets todays government and organization guidelines, for taste, packing and shipping ability, color, and so on. So what he was saying, you only get 1 out of 10,000, if you are wanting to market your product on a national or world wide market.

An of course we know that through this process, man has destroy or let go, some of the best tasting fruits, nuts and veggies, for the sake of commercialization. This is basically I think what you have been trying to put into our heads Jason, since I have know you.


The above followup was added by David, Waterford CA, zone9 on November 22, 2003 at 9:16 am PST.


Annoys me alot when they keep only the 1 in 10,000 trees that have hard skins and high sugar content, we are going to end up with 50 trees left (a million each but still there's only 50) of an entire species, that's good enough to go on the endangered list, just for the record I've never tasted a bad seedling apple growing on the highway yet, different yes (not much) but an apple is still an apple, you can find usefull ones much more often than 1 in 10,000 like my father found one where he works a seedling green apple that's as late as pink lady and tastes really good, all the apple grafts I did this winter were from trees growing by the roadside, rare fruit you see :) there's only one (now two) in exsistance : ) I don't even know what the fruit is like on any of the trees I took scions from but it will be fun waiting to see.

Right now I was looking at one of my seedling white sapotes and it's grown 1 foot since it started growing again 3 weeks ago, it's now my height and a powerfull force that thing, compared to the grafted trees that are sludging along it's super impressive, It will grow at this speed without stopping untill May 15th. I guess they will fruit somewhere around 20-30 feet tall so it's only a few more years away now. I still believe grafts are good for temporary fun while the other stuff matures and getting hold of some good parents for future seedling plantings but my real impressive tree's will be the seedlings

The above followup was added by Jason on November 24, 2003 at 3:58 pm PST.

How did you sprout the seeds?

I am quite interested in growing Hardy Kiwi in Armenia, and brought a bunch of seeds from America which I collected from the fruit I got at the supermarket. None of it sprouted! I had dried them out for a few weeks, then put them in a mini-greenhouse. Now I am trying to give them a winter chill for 3 months to see if that will do it - but it sounds like you guys have had better luck.

How exactly were you able to sprout these seeds? And were they Hardy Kiwi? Does that make a difference?

The above followup was added by Raffi Kojian on January 01, 2004 at 4:24 am PST.

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