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    Rossmount Orchard

David and Jeanette Wilson have owned and operated Rossmount Nursery and Orchards since purchasing the 14 Ha block of land in 1972. They have been supplying fruit trees to South East Queensland since 1977. Both David and Jeanette were instrumental in the formation of the Rare Fruits Council of Australia, Gympie Branch and both are involved in the Australian Persimmon Industry and Sunshine Coast Subtropical Fruit Growers.

In 1995, the Nursery began to specialise in wholesale persimmons, which have been sold to orchardists in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria South Australia and Tasmania. They are presently carrying good levels of grafted stock available for immediate sale and rootstock for oncoming spring orders.

In 1996, they were involved in the First International Symposium on Persimmon Growing in Chiang Mai, Thailand. In 2000, Jeanette became Secretary of the Australian Persimmon Association, and in October 2000 were major sponsors of the Second International Symposium of Persimmon Growing at Novotel Twin Waters.
 


Rossmount - Persimmons
Persimmons "Fruit of the Gods"
    Why Persimmons Represent a Progressive Investment Opportunity

The South-East Queensland region and northern New South Wales has been recognised in the past as always producing at the end of the season i.e. tropical fruits- Lychees, Mangoes etc.

The Persimmon, by nature is a temperate fruit, traditionally grown in a cooler climate that requires leaf drop and dormancy to ensure its survival through the winter months. These regions provide a climate that allows Persimmons to maintain their natural deciduous transition during winter but pushes fruit set forward due to a significantly warmer spring and summer. The result is an early crop commencing with harvest in Feb/Mar/April, which translates into an important market advantage.

We have operated in the Cooloola district since 1972 and have been seriously involved in the rare, exotic and more widely known fruit trees since 1978. Twenty years of research has resulted in our commitment to the Persimmon Industry. Our decision after working with all those fruits on our farm at Rossmount this is that the Persimmon is the fruit that we have chosen to grow commercially.
 

Rossmount Persimmons ready for market.
Persimmons ready for market.

Historically the problem encountered by orchardists in this area has been the establishment of commercially unviable orchards (too few trees) often with poor variety selection. It is as convenient to look after 1000 trees as it is 100. With our management team in place, we can provide the site planning, establishment and management for the 1000 trees - this can be followed through to the Packhouse. 1000 established persimmon trees will give you a very acceptable retirement income in 7 years time. It will allow use of your property and home as your business, because you qualify as a Primary Producer - with minimum requirement of a little over a hectare of suitable orchard land and reliable water. It is an opportunity to making a commitment to ensuring your future.

The trees require sound management and this is available to you within the establishment contract (X) We recommend mounding, trellising, irrigating at establishment and netting optional during site development or at Year 3.

Reference:
1. Yonemori, Kiezo. (1997) Persimmon Industry and Research Activities in Japan
2. Subhadrabandhu, S. (1996) First International Persimmon Symposium. International Society for Horticultural Science. Printed by Drukkerij Geers Offset, Eekhoutdriesstraat 67, 9042 Gent-Oostakker, Belgium. P22.

 

    Persimmon (Diospyros kaki) - an introduction to the 'fruit of the Gods'

Persimmon fruit has been consumed not only as fresh or dried fruit, but also as a sweetening in various cuisine and confectionery . The amber vinegar made from persimmons has a unique flavour and has been used as a flavouring for traditional dishes in Japan.

Rossmount Persimmons.


Tannin, the active ingredient in Persimmon oil, has been used for various purposes:
 

Industrial:

Persimmon oil has been used in Japan, as an antiseptic or water proofing for paper and used in umbrellas and fibre fishing nets. It is also used as an undercoat for lacquerware and a clarifying agent in the production of Japanese Sake (rice liquor).

Medicinal or Pharmaceutical:

Persimmon oil has a variety of medicinal advantages such as alleviating alcoholic hangover, lowering blood pressure, detoxifying snake poisons, anti carcinogenic and antiviral benefits. The last two have attracted public attention recently.

Cosmetics:

Persimmon oil has been used for a variety of hand creams, for it has features that smooth the surface of the human skin.

Beverages:

Persimmon leaves are rich in Vitamin C, several times that of the fruit. Therefore tea made from persimmon leaves is becoming popular as a healthy drink in Japan and the consumption is increasing.

Timber:

Persimmon timber is also very useful. It is hard and solid enough to be a good material for furniture, ornaments and the head of golf clubs.

Ornamental:

From the viewpoint of beauty, the colourful leaves of persimmon trees are magnificent. The gorgeous red and yellow leaves in autumn have often been celebrated in poetry or depicted in paintings. Some persimmon cultivars have been released recently in Japan for ornamental purpose.
Source: Subhadrabandhu, S. (1996) First International Persimmon Symposium. International Society for Horticultural Science. Printed by Drukkerij Geers Offset, Eekhoutdriesstraat 67, 9042 Gent-Oostakker, Belgium. Keynote address: Professor Akira Sugiura P15-16.

   Persimmons: a rationale for commercial investment opportunity

International Market - Internationally persimmons are a major horticultural crop with large plantings in Japan, China and Korea. Known as the "Apple of the Orient", Japan produces 300,000 tonnes per year which is 7% of the total fruit tonnage and dominates trade in the northern hemisphere.

Australian Domestic History - Persimmons have been grown in Australia for many years although local demand has been limited and familiarity with the fruit in Australia has been with the astringent varieties most often found in backyards. The Italians and Greeks are familiar with the astringent type of persimmon which can only be eaten after the fruit has softened. However, it is the non-astringent varieties of persimmon that have the greatest market potential, and are of the most international interest.

Persimmons in Focus - The donating varieties (sometimes known as Kaki or Fuji fruit) more recently introduced can be eaten when firm and crisp, and can be grown in the Atherton Tablelands in the North, in south-east Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, cropping then moves offshore to New Zealand.

Northern hemisphere producers primarily sell on domestic markets. As there is only limited supply of persimmon in the southern hemisphere, great potential exists to supply these markets out of season. Australian persimmons and their products are presently exported to Singapore, Taiwan, Korea, Malaysia, Thailand and Japan.

Development of a market for Australian persimmons in Europe would depend on whether we can produce sufficient fruit to sustain regular shipments in refrigerated containers during the season. Persimmons can be stored at 0 degrees celsius for 2-3 months.

The Australian Persimmon Export Company was created after five years of workshops and meetings where the growers defined the aims and objectives for the infant industry. Putting together a quality assurance program aimed at fulfilling the needs of Asian consumers and looking at the industry from an Australian perspective rather than individual orchardists. This group is unique, providing a forum for small growers and large growers to involve themselves in determining the export dynamics of the Australian Persimmon Industry.

In July 1996, the First International Persimmon Symposium on persimmons was held in Chiang Mail Thailand, with representatives from Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, Korea, Malaysia, South Africa, Italy and Israel. It was an excellent opportunity to exchange technical information and form important international business contacts. The second International Symposium had 100 delegates and was held in Novotel, Twin Waters in Queensland in September 2000.

    Persimmons: site design and orchard management
 

Site Selection:

Property should be a minimum of two hectares (or five acres) with good water.

Management:

After site assessment and selection and orchard consultation, commencement of bed mounding , trellis, and netting supports will be erected and ground prepared in readiness for planting in February. Regular inspections of your orchard during the first 12 months is most important.

Planting Design and Density :

The trees will be planted 3.3 metres by 3 metres with 1000 trees requiring one hectare (two and a half acres).

Trellising:

Fruit grown on trellises produce a much higher percentage of marketable fruit, and it is considered the yields are also much higher. Wind rub

Irrigation:

Essential to the establishment of the orchard and required during periods of stress and when fruiting.

Pruning:

In the early years, there will only be little pruning, mainly tree training, but when the trees reach year 4, they will require yearly pruning dependent on variety. Pruning takes place in July/August and December/January.

Fruit Thinning :

Takes place in November/December

Harvesting:

February/March/April

Packing:

to existing Packhouse

Pests and Disease Control :

Regular monitoring and necessary application

Trees - Cultivars:

The selection of varieties should be non-astringent

Windbreaks:

Dependent on property

Fertiliser:

Annually

Weed Control :

Use of weed mat on rows, mulch and grass clippings
For More information on Persimmons, please contact David and Jeanette Wilson at Rossmount.

 

David & Jeanette Wilson
Rossmount
2 Burns Road
Goomboorian Via.Gympie
Queensland 4570, Australia

Telephone: 0011 61 7 5483 3734 
Mobile: 0423 775 401
Fax: (07) 5483 3524

Email: admin@rossmount.com.au