How to Prune Persimmon Trees

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Persimmon trees require very little maintenance. Pruning once a year is important to the development of the tree as it begins to grow and bear fruit. Persimmon trees bear fruit on new growth so the optimal time to do it is late winter or early spring so that buds are stimulated. Pruning can also be done in early summer, but this is done more to slow down the growth of trees that are growing too large.

How to Prune Persimmon Trees
(Jocelyn Vodnik/Demand Media)

Things You'll Need

  • Persimmon tree
  • Tree pruners
  • Ladder
  • Tree paint
Step 1

Scan persimmon trees for broken, crossing and diseased branches. Also locate any branches that are shaded from sun as they will not produce fruit.

Jocelyn Vodnik/Demand Media
Step 2

Cut back problem branches with tree pruner to approximately the third bud inside the tree.

Jocelyn Vodnik/Demand Media
Step 3

Locate any branches growing upright and bend them to a 45-degree angle. Upright branches tend to not produce fruit. Horizontal growing branches do.

Jocelyn Vodnik/Demand Media
Step 4

Trim all other branches back by 1/3, heading back to a bud that is facing the direction you would like the tree to grow. Do not leave stubs. This will stimulate new growth.

Jocelyn Vodnik/Demand Media

Tips & Warnings

  • For newly planted persimmon trees, in the first year limit pruning to only removing crossed or broken branches. Paint the pruned area with white latex paint to reduce the chance of sunburn. The second year cut the tree back to 2 to 3 feet tall so that it forms a vase-shaped structure from the buds that will emerge below the cut. Paint again to limit sun damage.
  • Allow young persimmon trees to grow for several years without producing fruit.
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