There are two types of persimmons: American persimmon (Diospyros virginiana), native to the lower Midwest and the Southeast, and the oriental persimmon (Diospyros kaki), native to Japan. The qualities of the fruit are similar, and they both will ripen off the tree, although the results depend on how they are treated. American persimmons could be increased in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness 4b through 10. Oriental persimmons could be grown in USDA zones 8a through 11, although the cultivars “Great Wall,” “Peping” and “Shen,” grafted onto to American persimmon rootstock, could be grown in USDA 7a into 11.
Round or oval American persimmons have been 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter. They range in taste from the flat and insipid into the sweet and delectable. Old persimmons are green, turning mushy and soft using blue, bright red, orange or yellow skin as they are mature. They usually taste pungent and astringent — slightly bitter — until they soften and are fully ripe. Even ripe persimmons are sometimes astringent. A folk myth has it that a hard frost will ripen the persimmons and eliminate their astringency. That is a misconception. Persimmons just have a long time to mature and ripen.
There are astringent and nonastringent kinds of Oriental persimmons that are about the size of a peach, bigger than American persimmons. Astringent varieties need to flip delicate or be ripened artificially before they are edible. The nonastringent varieties are less difficult to ripen, and you can eat them while they are still firm. Pick Oriental persimmons only before or after they turn soft. It is possible to ripen them by keeping them forseven to ten times at room temperature. The earlier you choose them, the more they’ll take to ripen. Then they are ready to choose when they lose their green colour and turn from orange or yellow and orange to orange-red. Oriental persimmons are grown extensively in California and Florida.
Ripening and Removing Astringency
Although persimmons will ripen after they are picked, they will need to be fully ripened to eliminate their astringency. It is possible to accelerate their ripening and eliminate their astringency by covering them using uncooked dry rice for three to five times or by freezing them for one day. Drying them will eliminate their astringency. You can also treat persimmons using ethylene, a plant hormone that triggers seeds to germinate, flower petals to die, fruit to ripen and leaves to change colors.
Ripening With Ethylene
Bananas release obviously release ethylene. It is possible to ripen and eliminate persimmon astringency by putting them in a paper bag with ripe bananas. Close the cap of the bag but do not seal it because a few air needs to get inside to accelerate the ripening procedure. Commercial growers ripen and remove Japanese persommons’ astringency by spraying them with a 35 to 40 percent solution of ethyl alcohol and keeping them into a sealed container in 69 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 days.