Diospyros Lotus is an attractive deciduous tree that produces small fruits. It is native to south west Asia growing in the Himalayan and Caucasus mountain regions. In the UK it is often referred to as the Caucasian Persimmon, Date Plum or Lilac Persimmon.
Diospyros Lotus has a bushy habit and grows in a conical shape. Its oval-shaped leaves are approximately ten centimetres long by six centimetres wide. Arriving in early spring, these dark green glossy leaves are particularly attractive. In mid to late spring, small greenish-white bell-shaped flowers appear and, if the summer is warm enough, spherical yellow-orange fruits about the size of a walnut develop in late summer to early autumn. These fruits darken to a purple shade in October when they are often edible.
How Hardy Is Diospyros Lotus?
Diospyros Lotus is hardy in most UK regions but may struggle in consistently low temperatures and freezing winds. It requires some shelter from prevailing winds to fruit consistently.
How To Use Diospyros Lotus
Date plum trees make excellent specimen trees. The bark of Diospyros Lotus is highly attractive forming scaly platelets as the tree ages.
Left un-topped they will grow to a height of eight to twelve metres and spread over four to eight metres. They are slow growing often taking twenty to fifty years to reach maximum dimensions.
Persimmon Lilac trees give an open garden a firm structure. They fit well against a fence, where they can take advantage of wind protection, but also grow well in a lawn or flower border. Date plum trees can also be grown in large well-watered and well-fed containers. Container grown date plum trees will be restricted in size but will still fruit.
When you plant your Caucasian Persimmon ensure there is sufficient room for it to spread as they do not respond well to movement.
How To Care for Diospyros Lotus
Diospyros Lotus grows best in well-drained loamy soil. It will tolerate acid, alkaline or neural soils but will not thrive in chalky, clay or very dry soils. It will also need a good amount of sunlight, so plant yours in full sun in a south facing or west facing position to encourage a good crop of fruits. You can keep Diospyros Lotus at a manageable height and spread by pruning it. To restrict its height, cut back the main leader stem and other branches to a healthy bud.
If you are looking for an unusual specimen tree that is hardy and reliable a Lilac Persimmon is a good option. It is attractive, supports wildlife and brightens your garden from spring time to the winter frosts.