Kiwis are a warm-weather fruit that most people would never dream of trying to grow themselves, which is unfortunate because they are actually pretty easy to cultivate at home. Smaller, smooth-skinned varieties such as Annas or Issai grow well in pots and produce fruit that is sweeter than the fuzzy ones you get at the supermarket. Once you get your kiwi plants established they will take a couple of years to start producing fruit, but a mature plant can produce 50 lbs of fruit per season and will continue to grow and produce fruit for 40 years. There is no better time to get started, so let’s learn how to grow kiwi plants in a pot.
To make sure your kiwi growing is successful, you will want to make sure you have the right items on hand.
- A kiwi nursery container. (You can grow kiwis from seeds, but you need a male and female plant to produce fruit and it is easier to guarantee this if you get your starts from a nursery)
- Soilless potting mix with at least 1/3 organic material (kiwis like good drainage and do not like standing water)
- Bone meal or well-composted manure to mix into your soil as fertilizer
- A trellis for each plant
Once you have gathered all the necessary items, it is time to get planting.
- Fill your potting containers approximately 2/3 full with your potting mix and fertilizer.
- Remove your kiwi plant from the nursery container.
- Place a male and a female plant on either side of your centered kiwi. You need both for successful pollination and fruit growth.
- Fill the pot the rest of the way up with soil. Make sure to leave a couple of inches between the top of your soil and the top of the pot for watering.
- Set pots near a trellis. You may need to use a stake to encourage growth towards the trellis as you would with a tomato plant.
Below is a video tutorial for How To Grow A Kiwi Plant From Seed:
- Kiwis love sun and warmth and do best in full sun. If you are in a cooler climate try setting them next to a south or west-facing wall to optimize warmth. You can also keep them indoors near a south-facing window.
- Give your plant a couple of inches of water 3-4 times a week. This is where it is crucial that your soil drains properly or your kiwis will develop root rot.
- Every few weeks you will want to cut about half of the new growth from each branch. This encourages your plants to grow more bush-like and encourages flower growth which is vital for pollination.
- Fertilize your kiwi plants once a month during the summer growing season.
- Be sure to train your kiwis to use the trellis you have provided to avoid breakage.
Your kiwis will grow in clusters on your female plants starting shortly after pollination occurs. Once your fruit has reached the approximate size and color you see on kiwis at the grocery store they are ready to pick. Don’t worry about the softness of your fruit, they will ripen after you have removed them from the vine.