The persimmon is native to China where it has been cultivated for centuries. It's important to know that there are two kinds of persimmons: the Fuyu, which is non-astringent and may be eaten while the fruit is very firm to very soft, and the Hachiya.
Fuyu persimmons, now representing almost 80 percent of the persimmon market, are squatter and rounder than the Hachiya. The color is a yellow-orange and not as brilliant as the Hachiya. It almost looks like a mini pumpkin or perhaps a slightly flattened tomato
The Hachiya variety is more astringent and must be soft before eating. The astringent flavor is due to the high level of tannin in the fruit. When ripe, the Hachiya is deep orange without any green and may be "squishy" to the touch.
Persimmons are high in nutrients such as beta-carotene, Vitamin C and potassium. Both the pulp and peel are good sources of fiber. Persimmons may be eaten raw but are also excellent in jams and jellies.