What kid growing up in the south didn’t at some point get offered a native persimmon? It looks for all the world like it will taste delightful, then turns your mouth inside out with an astringency that almost literally doubles you over. Fortunately, that’s not what we’re talking about.
We’re talking about the fruit the rest of the world calls “kaki,” mildly sweet and thoroughly delicious even while firm, that ripens in the south in late October well into December. The natural sugar in the Asian persimmon behaves like anti-freeze and allows it to remain on the tree even through a light frost. Ours have survived 27 degrees.
Not only are persimmons tasty; they’re also relatively easy to care for. They need little attention except at harvest time. Pruning is generally a mistake, so leave them alone. Just be prepared to prop up the branches when they’re heavy laden with that delicious fruit!