Ajuntament de Barcelona

Diospyros kaki

Miramar Garden and Camí dels Cims

    Catalan name: 
    Caquier
    Spanish name: 
    Palosanto
    English name: 
    Chinese persimmon
    Botanical synonyms: 
    Diospyros chinensis
    Species characteristics
    Family: 
    Ebenaceae
    Origin: 
    China
    Habitat: 
    Subtropical to temperate climates
    Characteristics: 

    Deciduous tree 8-10 m tall, with rounded crown and hairy dun or reddish dun branches.

    The shape of the leaves, 5-18 cm long, is variable: obovate, oblong oval or elliptical oval. They finish into an elongated tip. The upper side is dark green and the lower side is lighter and pubescent.

    The yellow flowers, usually composed of four petals, are axillary, isolated the feminine ones and grouped into trios the masculine ones.

    The fruits are globose or ovoid berries, similar to an apple or a tomato. The shape and the colour are very variable and depend on the variety: 4-9 cm in diameter (although there also are some smaller, 1.5 cm) and the colour can go from dark orangish red to yellow. The calyx often remains sticked to the fruit after the harvest, but when ripens it becomes easy to remove.

    Flowering time: 
    May-June
    Fruiting time: 
    October-November
    Uses and properties: 

    Persimmon fruit (known as Chocolate persimmon, Cinnamon persimmon or Brown sugar) is an edible berry, bittersweet at taste, used as a fresh fruit or as ingredient for several dishes.

    History and curiosities: 

    The scientific name, Diospyros kaki, consists of the genus name Diospyros, created from the Greek words διός, "god", and πυρός, "grain", originally applied to the date-plum (Diospyros lotus), and the Japanese term kaki, "Chinese persimmon".

    The Chinese persimmon began to be cultivated in 8th century in Japan and China, but it did not reached the Western countries until 19th c.: in early 19th c. the United States and circa 1870 France, Spain and Italy.

    For further information: 

    LÓPEZ GONZÁLEZ, Ginés A. Los árboles y arbustos de la Península Ibérica e Islas Baleares. (2 vol.) Madrid: Mundi-Prensa, 2001

    THE ROYAL HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. Enciclopedia de plantas y flores. Barcelona: Grijalbo, 1996

    http://www.rhs.org.uk