For the Love of Fruit

20180915_134125In all honesty, we could have just taken the plants back to the store.  The Old Man claimed it was all trickery, but really he wanted the fruit, too.

This is a male & female set of vines. Both are needed for fruit production for this variety of kiwi.

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We had gone to the hardware store for something else.  I don’t even remember what it was, but it for sure wasn’t this particular plant.  The plant was Hardy Kiwi.  I had read about it before when looking up information about kiwis in general, trying to find out if I could get them to grow in my zone 9 garden.  The answer seems to be “no”.  Except for Hardy Kiwi.

The first arbor.  This was practice.

They are a relative of the kind of kiwi fruits you see at the store, but as the name implies, they are much hardier, handling temperatures way below freezing.  I don’t have to worry about that too much here, but we get just cold enough that most kiwis won’t make it.  They apparently also grow a monster-ton of tasty, grape-sized fruit, anywhere from 50-100 pounds a year!  And that’s one of the problems.

20180916_211509Hardy Kiwis are vines.  Big vines.  Up to 40 foot vines.  And that’s one of the other problems.  Soooo…. where do we put them?  I was finding out this information from the comfort of my couch.  After the plants had been purchased and brought home.  Perfect timing.  That’s when the Old Man said I tricked him.

20180916_211654My suggestion was simple.  It would be relatively easy.  It would be relatively inexpensive.  It would be up to the Old Man to make it happen (I’m simply the idea person here).  Build an arbor.  Another one.

20180916_211945You see, we (I) had already purchased an arbor not even a year ago.  It was a pre-fab kit, just assembly required (by the Old Man).  It’s big, it was much more expensive (and fancier).  But it’s in the front yard, and this would be in the back.  This would be smaller, and I would devise the plans to use readily accessible materials, and not much assembly.  It would be so much easier!  And just think of all the fruit!  (I sure hope those vines produce like they say they will, or I’ll never hear the end of it!)

Soon the vines will cover the top and provide a nice shaded area to kick back and drink our frappes and lemonades.

Explaining my thoughts took shape in various forms.  First on paper, then with Legos, then with colored popsicle sticks and lots of tape.  Then the Old Man started adding in his own thoughts on how to best assemble this arbor to support the vines and their fruits and where to best locate it.  It took some time and effort, and extra helping hands from the oldest son who had stopped by for something else, and a friendly neighbor who just happened to be home when we needed to move it around a bit.  But it’s done and up, and now those vines better do what they need to do!


28 thoughts on “For the Love of Fruit

  1. Oh no, no no . . . . no, no, no . . . No you didn’t! Another vine! I suppose if you can get aggressive with grapes, you can handle kiwi. I am not familiar with the hardy ones. I have only seen them in catalogues. The common kiwi is not easy to work with, and is not very productive, relative to the size of the vines. (They can make more fruit than you know what to do with, but the vines are huge!) Are the hardy kiwis more productive relative to the size of the vines? I think that part of the reason the common kiwis are not very productive is that they do not like the winter chill, even though it does not get very cold here. The frost tolerance of the hardy kiwi would be an important advantage.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know! We are gluttons for punishment, I guess. I know nothing about them other than what I’ve read on the internet. Most of the sources are pretty confident about there being at least 50 pounds of fruit per female vine, with the maximum up to 100 pounds. We shall see! The vines seem to max out at about 40 feet, which was part of the incentive for building the arbor. If it doesn’t work out, we’ll hack them out and put more grapes!

      Liked by 1 person

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