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Training and Pruning Kiwifruit plants

Build a strong structure like the T-bar trellis system.

First / Second Growing Season

  • One male plant to every 5-7 female plants. Plant 5 metres apart.
  • Encourage single trunk to top of structure
  • Remove growing tip and allow 1 bud to grow each way, these are now your main leader.
  • Terminate this leader at each end once they have reached the end of the structure. Depending on planting time this will probably happen in the 2nd growing season.
  • At all times prevent leader from winding on to the wire as this will eventually cut in and may kill the leader.

Third Growing Season

  • Buds will break from the leader and form your canes.
  • Tie canes down to wire at 40cm spacing along leader.
  • Remove surplus canes. In subsequent seasons canes will develop from where these ones have been removed. These will become known as replacement canes.

Fourth Growing Season

  • Fruiting spurs will develop on the main leader and one year old canes in spring then flower and carry fruit in the autumn.

Female Winter Pruning

  • Prior to fruiting in the first 3 years
    • Remove dead, diseased and tangled wood
    • Prune to desired formation as described in season 1-3
  • After fruiting
    • Remove all fruited wood
    • Replacement canes form close to the main leader to be tied down.

Male Winter Pruning

  • Remove dead and declining wood.

Female Summer Pruning

  • This is done to maintain order, spacing and light access. This may need to be carried out twice to maintain order.
  • October / November
    • Remove unfruited shoots that are not required for next season. Making sure the plant is not too crowded.
    • Remove erect water shoots to two or more buds. These are not required because of their erect growth habit. This will retain a growing point for replacement canes or spur wood.
    • Also shorten any shoots starting to curl and tangle.
  • December / January / February
    • Prune canes to maintain a manageable length. This will depend on the structure you have built.
    • Remove tangles and again restrict the vine to its allocated space.

Male Summer Pruning

  • Once the male plant has flowered and the fruit has set on the female, cut the male canes back to remove the flowered wood.
  • Remove excessive vigorous wood or wood growing vertical.
  • Maintain structure and make sure light is allowed into the spur growth for future growth and flowering.
  • Remove tangles.

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