Feijoas have to the easiest fruit to grow, so easy it feels somehow wrong when you see them for sale in the supermarket. Feijoas are part of the Kiwi childhood, picking them off a tree or under it for that matter.
The best fruiting varieties are grafted this will improve the yield, better fruit quality and size. The cheaper feijoa commonly called seedling grade, because they are grown from seed will produce some small fruit inconsistently. Ideal for use as a wind break or hedge, as they are hardy and respond well to being trimmed.
Feijoas will grow in most parts of New Zealand and are tolerant of frost and wind.
They are not particularly fussy and will grow in most ordinary garden soil as long as the drainage is good. They prefer plenty of sun but will handle light shade.
Prepare the hole with some compost and some sheep pellets to give the plant a head start.
On the whole Feijoas suffer very little from pest and disease but in the last few years they have become a host tree for the Guava Moth. It is hard to spot on the tree but from the outside the fruit has circular brown patches, inside the fruit is rotten. It can also cause the fruit to drop before it matures. Set your traps in spring and autumn.
As they have a lot of surface roots, an application of mulch will keep the soil moist and supply nutrients to the soil. Ensure that you don’t put the mulch against the trunk as this will cause collar rot.
Pruning is not normally required unless the bush needs shaping. Remove the lower branches to give you clearance to mow, weed and pick the fruit, about half a metre from the ground is usually enough.
Most feijoas perform better by planting another or similar bush that flower and fruit at the same time. They don’t need to be right next to each other; in the same garden is fine or even in the neighbour’s garden.
Gemini – smaller growing plant, small fruit, 2m at maturity.
Pounamu – medium sized fruit, dark green skin, and 3m at maturity.
Unique – small to medium sized fruit, very juicy, 3m at maturity.
Apollo – very large sweet rough skinned fruit, 3m at maturity.
Kakapo – smaller plant with mid-sized fruit, 2-2.8 m at maturity.
Marion – dark green, smooth skinned, large fruit, 3m at maturity.
Mammoth – vigorous grower, large fruit, 3m at maturity
Marion – smooth skin, medium to large fruit, 3m at maturity.
Opal Star – medium to large, smooth fruit, 2-2.5m at maturity.
Wiki Tu – compact tree, large thin skinned fruit 3m at maturity.
Triumph – medium sized fruit, juicy mild flavour 3m at maturity.