Persimmon - Virginian

Scientific Name(s): Diospyros virginiana
Abundance: plentiful
What: fruit
How: raw, jams, jelly, candied, tarts
Where: fields, sunny edges of woods
When: late summer, fall
Nutritional Value: fiber, Vit C, B, minerals, anti-oxidants, flavonoids.

Ripe persimmons on tree.

Persimmon fruit is best/sweetest when it is orange in color and a little over ripe (somewhat squishy). In general, only female persimmon trees produce fruit but there are rare occasion when male trees have suddenly produced a few fruit now and then.

Unripe persimmon.

Young persimmon tree. Mature trees can grow 40 to 60 feet tall. The bark is gray to black in color.

Persimmon leaves are oval, smooth-edged, dark green on top and light green/gray on the bottom.

Unripe fruit. Persimmons contain six flatish seeds.

Texas distribution, attributed to U. S. Department of Agriculture. The marked counties are guidelines only. Plants may appear in other counties, especially if used in landscaping.

North American distribution, attributed to U. S. Department of Agriculture.

The Virginian Persimmon tree is mainly found in East Texas. Persimmons aren't sweet enough to eat until they are dark orange in color and already falling off the tree.  An unripe persimmon is extremely astringent and will suck all the moisture from your mouth...which is kind of a funny joke to do to someone. Persimmon wood is very dense and hard, much like its relative ebony. The seeds are very easy to sprout, resulting in numerous persimmon trees in the same area.

Virginian Persimmons have separate male and female trees and both need to be present for fruit. Only the females produce fruit but male trees must be present to fertilize her flowers.

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