John, thanks for answering - I am fascinated
! But afraid my questions might preempt your next article..? I'm surprised anyone buys Hardy Kiwi, they're so easy to start from pruned cuttings... And come to think of it, I'm not sure if I know anyone who's started a Fuzzy that way? So, you're using hardy Kâ€™s as dwarfing rootstock for the Fuzzy's, with the size limiting effects, as well as earlier ripening characteristics (like "It feels like Iâ€™m gonna die - so I'd better hurry up and make some seed
!) of restricting rootstock..?
Iâ€™m glad you mentioned smaller yards, if larger, more shading
houses. Both Fuzzy and Hardy Kiwi should work wonderful with their roots and 'trunks' shaded by a deck, and their fruiting tendrils trained over a handsome trellis. Shade would conserve the moisture around their mulch-loving roots, and perhaps retard their tendency to send up sap with late winter sun directly on their trunks ... whereas you could train the upper vine in any direction, utilizing a sunny spot to its fullest. I haven't always lived with acreage... I grew up between houses in Portland, where my Dad kept bees in our tiny back yard!
Your 'experiments' may be cutting edge, or not, but they're the first I've heard of this grafted combo. I've had my Fuzzy's around 8 years, and don't remember how long until they fruited, but don't think it was over 3 or 4 years - which is sooner than some apples. As I'd read the same about them 'taking over' - and setting hundreds of pounds of fruit -- not if you stay on them!
It took awhile, likely due to such conflicting recommendations, to figure out their care, but I've since learned their ways. And much of what I read turned out to be wrong.
What I've learned about Fuzzy Kiwi is to leave their established fruit producing 'vines,' selectively (if occasionally) 'replacing' a couple with a well placed (8 foot long) 'sprout.' They develop what I'd best describe as 'fruit spurs,' and will set fruit from the same set of spurs
year after year. As far as those â€œhundreds of pounds of fruit
â€... thin it! And just like an apple tree, some years the set is too much, some too little, and like last year (for me) â€“ just right!
I'd mentioned transplanting an Anna
Hardy from my Uncle this winter; it's looking great. It will be competing with a start of the same he'd given me a couple years ago that's not near as large... sooo, with your experience in grafting them, I may use it as 'rootstock' for... a Ken's red
..? Anyway, I hope you describe the time of year, type of grafts, and any quirks youâ€™ve discovered ... or can I simply search "grafting Kiwi" and find more-than-I-can-digest on the subject..? ...I think I'll wait for you!