Actinidia deliciosa (kiwi fruit)
Actinidia deliciosa fruits (Photo: Wolfgang Stuppy)
Actinidia deliciosa (A.Chev.) C.F.Liang & A.R.Ferguson
kiwi fruit, Chinese gooseberry
Not evaluated according to IUCN Red List criteria.
Ornamental, edible fruits, medicine.
Hairs of fruits can cause throat irritation if ingested, and fruits contain actinidin, an enzyme that can also be irritant.
About this species
This attractive climber is grown in temperate gardens for its large heart-shaped leaves and creamy-white, scented flowers, but throughout much of the world it is better known as a commercial fruit.
The species was considered to be a variety of Actinidia latifolia, namely A. latifolia var. deliciosa when first described in 1940 by the French botanist Auguste Jean Baptiste Chevalier (1873–1956). It achieved full species status in 1984 when Liang and Ferguson published the name Actinidia deliciosa. It is sometimes referred to as a variety of A. chinensis, a related species in which the fruits lose their hairs as they mature. Another wild relative, A. kolomikta, also has edible fruits.
Actinidia chinensis var. deliciosa, Actinidia chinensis var. hispida, Actinidia latifolia var. deliciosa