Perhaps I was unconsciously invoking that sixth sense that tells an
outdoors person that there is more about than meets the eye.
However that may have been, suddenly I realized there was more to this
beautiful October morning than a box of persimmons. And, it was very close.
But what was it?
For a short time I forgot about harvesting those succulent, pumpkin-orange
fruits that would, to my delight, be turned into a persimmon pudding, or
perhaps cookies, rolls, or even wine.
But who, or what, was this strange interloper into my day? Whatever
it was, it stopped me in my tracks as my eyes swept the area around the
big tree. Foot-by-foot, inch-by-inch--somewhat as in mushroom hunting--my
eyes swept the area, but I could find nothing unusual about the area.
Then, just as in mushroom hunting and cleaning up doggie doo-doo in
the backyard (I often can’t see those “things” until I am standing on ‘em),
this intruder stuck out like a sore thumb in a game of touch football.
I simply had not been “seeing the forest for the trees.”
But there they were . . . all about me. . .a stunning array of
persimmon leaves; shades of bright yellow laced with more shiny,
black designs than my vision, and ability to comprehend, could even hope
Only one thing to do, forget the persimmons, temporarily, and photograph
some of the outstanding designs on the leaves. And so my persimmon hunt
faltered. But not before there was enough fruit to make two pints of pulp
that would be frozen for use later in the fall or winter.
Now that we have zeroed in on persimmons, the time is ripe to answer
some questions concerning the propagation of persimmon and paw-paw trees
(the latter is often more like a shrub).
I have had several requests recently for information on propagating
these two “fruit producers.”
I have been largely unsuccessful over the years in planting seeds from
these fruits. My only success apparently came from simply broadcasting
the seeds in likely places after all of my attempts to plant seeds had
I have a small grove of half a dozen paw-paw plants in a deep-shaded
spot on the riverbank behind the house. At another house my efforts spawned
a persimmon tree as big as a broom handle.
In an attempt to be more botanically scientific in answering the queries
I have received, I called Bob Hawkins, supervisor of the Indiana Division
of Forestry nursery at Vallonia (south of Brownstown).
Bob says persimmons and paw-paws can be propagated by planting the seeds
about one inch deep in good soil. He cautions that while fall is the time
to plant these seeds, they do not normally produce seedlings until early
summer in the following year.
Incidentally, Hawkins points out that those who want to dress up a piece
of land with paw-paw, persimmon, and many other trees, the two nurseries
of the Division of Forestry now are accepting orders for seedlings that
will be delivered next spring.
Order forms will be found on line at: www.in.gov/dnr/forestry (http://www.in.gov/dnr/forestry).
Order forms also are available by calling theVallonia nursery (1/812-358-3621)
by US mail: IDNR Nursery Program, PO Box 218, Vallonia, IN 47281.
Placing an order does not assure that the order will be filled. If there
are orders for more seedlings than the nursery produces, successful applicants
(orders) of a lottery-type drawing will be filled. That lottery, if necessary,
will be conducted late this month or early in November. Stocks available
next spring will be sold over the counter. Orders can be shipped for a
fee, or they may be picked up at the nursery.
on thumbnail image for enlarged view.
beauty of persimmon leaves.