Kiwi Farming – Introduction
Fruit cultivation or raising a fruit orchard is something which guarantees regular income. Fruits are constantly gaining popularity than another type of cereal crops. This is due to the fact that people are gradually realizing the importance of fruits and its positive impact on the health.
Fruit cultivation is taken up by many as a side income. This is because the fruit trees require constant attention only during the early years. After maturity, they do not require such attention. Besides, the profit after harvesting and marketing of fruits is very good compared to any other crop. Most of the fruit trees are perennial means once they are grown, the trees can survive for long. Among various other fruits, kiwi is one such fruit which is quite popular among the masses.
Kiwi is especially known for its numerous health benefits and nutritional content. The cultivation of kiwi is not so common around the world. It naturally grows in cold countries. However, due to increasing demand, the kiwi cultivation has been taken up in many other places where previously kiwi had not been grown. Many new varieties and cultivars of kiwi have also been released which produce better quantity and quality of kiwi fruits.
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Scientific Name of Kiwi: Actinidia deliciosa
Top Kiwi Producing Countries In The World
Common Name Of Kiwi In Other Languages
|Language||Ways to say kiwi|
|Chinese Simplified||奇异果(qíyì guǒ)|
|Chinese Traditional||奇異果(qíyì guǒ)|
|Khmer||សត្វ ឃី វី|
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Different Variety Of Kiwi Cultivated Across The World
This is a high yielding variety of kiwi. The amount of acid and Vitamin-C both are very high in the Bruno variety. The chilling period duration required by this variety is lower compared to others. The fruits have a dark brown cover and are long in shape.
This is also a high yielding variety. The sugar content in the fruit is low and the acidity content is high. This variety of kiwi plant bears fruit which has an oblong shape. The flowers mature late but the fruits mature early. In the cultivation of Monty variety, intercultural activities such as thinning are required for a good yield.
This variety of kiwi trees bear fruits which are sweet to taste. The acidity content of the fruit is low. The fruits have an oblong shape and medium size. The variety of kiwi tree has an early maturity of fruits as well as flowers.
This variety is a very popular variety which is loved by all. The fruits are sweet in taste and also have a high content of Vitamin-C. The chilling period required for this variety is more. The tree bears fruits twice in a year. The fruits of Hayward kiwi are much broader in size than in length.
The Allison variety of kiwi plant bears fruits which are sweeter than acidic. The fruits mature earlier. Also, the tree is of high yielding variety. The fruits are broader in shape.
The vitamin-C content of this kiwi is very high. The size of the fruit is a bit small and the trees can tolerate colder temperatures. This variety if kiwi is also known by the name- Arctic Kiwifruit.
This variety of kiwi plant was made to tolerate colder conditions. The size of the fruit is extremely small. The skin of the fruit is also smooth. For such reasons, this kiwi can be eaten whole along with the skin. The taste and flavor are almost same as other kiwis.
Almost similar to the name, the fruit of this variety is of a bronze color. The flesh of the kiwifruit is also different. Unlike other kiwi’s green flesh, the gold kiwi has mustard colored The flavor of gold kiwi is also very different and unique.
The cultivation of kiwi requires a number of chilling hours. So before choosing a variety, the number of chilling hours must be found about the variety. Proper cultivating conditions for kiwi are very important to know to get a decent yield and profit.
Soil Conditions For Kiwi Cultivation
Kiwi plants require a lower ph of the soil. Alkaline soil reduces the yield of kiwi fruits. The ideal ph for cultivating kiwi is 6.9. For cultivating kiwi, well-drained soil which is fertile and rich in nutrients must be used. Though kiwi can be cultivated in a variety of soils, sandy loam soils are mostly preferred for kiwi cultivation. The soil also must be rich and have a good drainage capacity. Soil with poor drainage is not proper for the growth of kiwi plants.
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Climatic Conditions For Kiwi Cultivation
Kiwi is usually grown in colder regions. The most important thing about the cultivation of kiwis is the number of chilling hours required. A minimum of 700-800 number of chilling hours in winter are required for cultivating kiwi. Areas with an altitude of 800-1500m above the sea level are ideal for the cultivation of kiwi. A well distributed annual average rainfall of 150cm is appropriate for kiwi crops. During the vegetative growth, the kiwi plant cannot tolerate frost conditions or strong winds. Full sunshine is needed for the growth of plants but exposure to excessive heat during summer may lead to scorching and scalding in the plant parts. Therefore plant protection from frost during winter and heat during summer is essential.
Land Preparation For Kiwi Cultivation
The land preparation is finished by December. The area must be cleared of any weeds of previous cultivation. Proper ploughings and harrowing are necessary for preparation of land. The soil has to be made proper for the cultivation of kiwi vines. In case of hilly areas and terrains, the land can be contoured or terrace farming can be used for kiwi cultivation. In such a case, the land preparation must be such that the plants get ample sunlight for its growth. Appropriate quantities of farmyard manure are to be mixed with the topsoil.
Propagation Method And Planting Of Kiwi Cultivation
Grafting and cutting methods are generally used in the cultivation of kiwi. Since land is to be prepared in December, the planting is done in the month of January. The grafted and cut plants are first grown in the nursery under controlled conditions. As soon as the grafts develop root, they are transplanted to the main field. In the main field, the depth of planting the grafts must be same as when they are planted in the nursery. They are to be planted in previously prepared pits and covered with topsoil mixed with farmyard manure. The soil around the base of the plant is to be pressed firmly after planting to avoid any gaps. A light irrigation is preferred after planting.
Planting Season And Spacing Of Kiwi Cultivation
January is the time of planting of the kiwi plants. The planting season may usually vary for different varieties and cultivars. The region where kiwi is cultivated also matters. Usually, a spacing of 4m*6m is employed while kiwi cultivation. The spacing may also vary slightly for different cultivars.
Nutrition Management Methods Of Kiwi Cultivation
The first application of farmyard manure is done during land preparation. Cultivation of kiwi requires the application of more amounts of chlorine fertilizers. The nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus fertilizers must be applied in two doses. In case of young plants, the fertilizer is to be applied around the base. In case of older plants, the fertilizers or manure is spread evenly in the soil by the broadcasting method. A proper balance of fertilizers and manure or organic fertilizer must be maintained while management of nutrition of kiwi plants.
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Irrigation Methods For Kiwi Cultivation
Heavy irrigation usually not required in kiwi cultivation. Irrigation after every 10 or 15 days is sufficient for the cultivation of kiwi. Irrigation during flowering and fruit development is necessary. A light irrigation can be applied while planting in the main field. Proper irrigation during early stages of development is recommended in kiwi plants. Also in case of excessive rainfall, the excess water has to drain away from the field.
Intercultural Operations For Kiwi Cultivation
Weed removal must be done on a regular basis to reduce the severity of weed attack in the kiwi crop. Several methods for weed removal can be used during the initial stages of growth. In the first five years of planting, intercropping of kiwi plants can be done with other vegetable crops or legume crops. Intercropping reduces some pests or diseases, adds nutrients to the soil and also adds extra income for the business.
Training is an important operation in kiwi cultivation. The vines must be properly trained so that the plants can develop a proper structure. A trellis can be used for supporting the vines. The bower system where a flat top network of wire is used to train the kiwi vines is said to be very effective in fruit yield. This method is costly though. The network and arrangement for training must be done before the planting is done.
Pest And Disease Control Method In Kiwi Cultivation
The most common pests and insects affecting kiwi plant are:
- Boxelder bug
- Armoured scales
- Bleeding canker
- Armillaria root rot
- Crown gall
- Water staining of fruit
- Botrytis fruit rot
- Sooty mold of fruit
- Bacterial blight
- Phytophthora root
- Crown Rot
The diseases and pests can be controlled by application of appropriate pesticides and chemicals. If controlled in early stages, this pest and diseases can be controlled in an effective way. Pest management must be done effectively so that the yield is not affected.
Yield Of Kiwi Cultivation
Usually, with a good management, kiwis can be yielded at 50-100 kg from each vine. The plants which have been trained on trellis have been said to provide a yield of 25 tonnes of fruit per hectare of land.
Harvesting Of Kiwi Fruits
The kiwi plants start to produce fruits 3-4 years after planting. The onset of commercial production starts after seven years. All the fruits do not acquire maturity at the same time. For that reason, the bigger fruits are collected first. After collecting the fruits, the fruit surface is rubbed with a cloth to remove the fruit skin hairs. Mature hard fruits must be harvested for selling.
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Post-Harvest Management And Marketing Of Kiwi Fruits
After collection and cleaning of fruits, they are graded on basis of size and quality. Usually, the fruits which have a weight above 70 g are graded as A. Lower weight of fruits is graded as lower. The greatest advantage of kiwi fruits is that it can be stored for longer durations. With refrigeration, the fruits can be stored up to months.
After sorting and grading, the fruits have to be packaged in cardboard boxes or proper packaging and sold in the market. The local market can be used for selling. Kiwi also fetches a good price when exported.
Benefits Of Kiwi
- Kiwi is one of the richest sources of vitamin c. It is loaded with antioxidants which purify blood and clear the body of toxins and harmful substances.
- Kiwi is known to be rich in fiber. The fiber present in kiwi is very good for digestion and also enabling smooth bowel movements.
- The Vitamins contained in kiwi is good for the skin. it maintains the youthful skin.
- Kiwi contains essential minerals which regulate normal functioning of the body and keeps it in a healthy state.
Kiwi Cultivation – Conclusion
Kiwifruit is a highly nutritious fruit. The great demand for this fruit has pushed farmers for more cultivation of kiwi. Since kiwi has very high demand in the international market, the cultivation of kiwi can be very profitable.