Michigan Hardy Kiwi Berries

Michigan hardy kiwi
One of our hardy kiwi plants shortly after being introduced to the farm.

Yes! We have a large chunk of our Michigan farm dedicated to growing Kiwi berries (Actinidia arguta). These berries grow on a trellis system similar to grapes, except they are much taller and more robust than any grape trellis. When Hardy kiwi plants reach maturity they often have a hundred pounds of fruit on every plant. We have been pampering our kiwi berries at our Edenville, MI farm for a while now and we are hoping for a solid harvest in fall of 2020.

We are one of very few farms in the State of Michigan that have Kiwiberry plants and we are hoping they become a big hit in our area. They are fun to watch grow and so far they are worth all of the extra effort needed to maintain them. A super interesting plant and when we heard about them, we just knew they were a good fit for us.  They are very common in Poland, New Zealand and some other countries, but there are a very few commercial growers in the US. Our Michigan Kiwi berries are doing spectacular and are showing great promise of high yields in the near future.

Our Cultivars

We grow 2 varieties, the Michigan State cultivar and the Anna. Like many other plant species, the hardy kiwi requires a male plant for fertilization. The males don’t produce fruit, but they are required for proper pollination of the fruit producing females. The Michigan state kiwiberry has a long exciting story behind it. I plan to write about this particular cultivar extensively in a blog post very soon.

Hardy kiwi compared to standard kiwi
Shown here is the Hardy kiwiberry (actinidia arguta)  next to a traditional fuzzy kiwi (actinidia deliciosa). Notice the berry does not have the fuzz of the standard kiwi.

What are Hardy Kiwis/ Kiwi berries?

Imagine a traditional kiwi fruit in a bite sized morsel. You can eat these delicious berries right off the vine and they taste great. They don’t have the annoying fuzzy skin to deal with, you pluck them off the plant and eat them whole.

Michigan kiwi berries will hopefully be for sale in 2020. By 2021 we will be in full production and will certainly have berries for everyone interested in buying them.