The kiwi is a delicious fruit, sought after for its richness in vitamin C. It is very popular with young and old. But to hope to harvest large kiwis in abundance, the gardener has every interest in pruning his kiwi tree, namely the Actinidia (Actinidia chinensis), a climbing vine that absolutely must be trellised. It is necessary to intervene twice a year, at very specific times and to respect the pruning method in order to promote the production of kiwis. Here is everything you need to know to properly prune your kiwi tree.
Training pruning for a kiwi under 3 years old
Whether you grow self-fertile, female or male kiwi trees, there is no escaping the size of these twining lianas. During the first two winters following planting, a training size because Actinidia is a shrubby creeper of astonishing vigor, which can take between 6 and 8 meters each year.
- In the year of planting, we simply reduce the length of the branches by 50% in order to promote their branching.
- In the second year, the secondary branches should be pruned to 50 cm. These are the future main branches of the kiwi tree. They must therefore be kept. The fine branches are pruned above the 5th eye. We take advantage of this pruning session to trellis the vines of Actinidia.
The different mandatory sizes for a kiwi over 3 years old
When the kiwi tree is 3 years or olderit must undergo two to three prunings per year.
It occurs during the winter season, in January or Februaryi.e. during the period of vegetative rest. By this time all the leaves have fallen and the fruit harvest is over.
This cleaning pruning allows the gardener to eliminate the most frail or diseased branches as well as dead branches so as to keep only the most vigorous. The silhouette of Actinidia is thus better balanced. In addition, his heart is airy. The air circulates better there and the kiwis will be able to take advantage of the heat.
A fruiting size
It is carried out in July, when the diameter of the young fruits is around 10 mm. This size is also mandatory. The goal is toremove any excess fruit in order to allow others to become bigger. Ideally, a fruiting branch should bear no more than 6 kiwis.
Of course, so that the Actinidia does not run out unnecessarily, all the branches that do not bear fruit, as well as dry wood, diseased or damaged branches, troublesome or too many branches. So that no snag remains, the cut must be made flush with the branches. We finish this pruning session by slightly shortening the carpenters which must then be attached.
A complementary summer size
It’s about a light sizewhich we perform in August. Each twig that has developed well since the fruiting pruning carried out the previous month must be shortened (remember that growth is extremely rapid). It is advisable to prune after the two or three leaves which are above the last group of fruitsthat is, the one closest to the end of the branch.
Mastering the vigor of a kiwifruit tree for a better harvest
With Actinidia, no question of neglecting the size. This involves intervening twice a year obligatory and carry out an additional pruning if necessary. We scrupulously respect the main pruning principles of this type of vine. Knowing that these are shoots of the year who produce the fruit, it is important not to improvise and prune anywhere if you want to enjoy a good harvest. We also avoid leaving too much wood to the Actinidia because if we do not cut short enough, we will harvest very small kiwis.
If you are sorely lacking in gardening experience, the good idea is to entrust the pruning of Actinidia to one landscaper. We thus have the guarantee that it will be carried out at the ideal time and in the rules of the art. Especially since there are several species and varieties of kiwi trees, and not all are cut the same way.