Appalachia Folklore

Persimmon Seed = Snow…Maybe

Persimmon seed forcasts weather

A friend sent me the photo of the persimmon seed. See the little spoon shape on the right side? That’s supposed to signify a snowy winter ahead.

The folklore goes like this:

  • If you split open a persimmon seed and see a fork shape the winter ahead will be mild.
  • If you split open a persimmon seed and see a knife shape the winter ahead will be icy with cutting winds.
  • If you split open a persimmon seed and see a spoon shape it signifies a snowy winter ahead.

According to the farmers almanac you’re supposed to use a persimmon from your neck of the woods to forecast the coming winter in your area. And according to most of the “persimmon seed lookers” I’ve heard from this year-most seeds are showing spoons.



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  • Reply
    October 19, 2014 at 4:27 pm

    Loved Working on a Building! They were on!

  • Reply
    October 10, 2014 at 11:35 pm

    Very interesting. Never heard this one.
    When we were young though, our Grandmother told us the black stripes on a fuzzy caterpillar indicate how bad the winter will be too, the more numerous and wider the black stripes, the harder the winter cause the caterpillar is growing more of the darker color to take in more heat from the sun to keep warm so it can survive, but if one is mostly brown, it will be a mild winter.
    We’ve watched the caterpillars, which I have to admit we don’t see many of nowadays, and we always forget what we saw by the time winter rolls around. Guess we need to take pictures of them. LOL
    God bless.

  • Reply
    Don Casada
    October 10, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    I decided that a sample of one wasn’t enough. Since the number seven represents completeness, I sliced open seven seeds (although they only came from five persimmons). Mixed results. The strongest one was a long jagged knife. One had nothing at all, four had small spoons, and one looked like a handle with the implement broken off.
    See here:
    Christine Proctor says that the first place their cattle head in the morning is to the persimmon tree in the pasture. I didn’t know that they’d eat them, but most everything else will, so why not?

  • Reply
    October 10, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    I have a beautiful yellow bowl of pretty orange persimmons sitting on my counter but they are not quite ripe yet. If they predict snow though, I will be so happy. Snow for Christmas? Won’t happen. I live on the gulf coast and we will be lucky if we can wear our new sweaters we bought last year. I love it here but living in the mountains sounds wonderful too. Great post!

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    October 10, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    and Don….Phewwww and Ewwwwww!
    I think I will believe the seed I’ve already observed even though the seed came from about 8 miles from here on the opposite side of the river and break in ridge line!
    Thanks anyhow,
    PS…Also, squirrel nests are low and built in the steady part of the trees here!
    Yellow jackets are burying deep in the ground close to buildings. Also building nest in siding, etc. and hard to eradicate. After multiple sprayings and nozzle dusting, a person we know had to call the exterminator!

  • Reply
    kenneth o. hoffman
    October 10, 2014 at 11:13 am

    Tipper i will check with next spring, to see if you had a bad snow in the winter months. for me no snow in Tucson. regards to all the non seeing piggys. k.o.h

  • Reply
    October 10, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Most of the “signs” seem to be showing a bad winter. The wooly worms I’ve seen are dark in WV this year with no light coloring whatsoever!
    I would love to participate in the persimmon seed prediction, but no clue where to find one.

  • Reply
    Will Weatherby V
    October 10, 2014 at 10:26 am

    If a pig slipped and fell on ice would it bust its boston butt?

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    October 10, 2014 at 10:19 am

    I’m glad to see the shovel, that
    means we’re gonna be shoveling lots
    of SNOW! I like cooler weather, but
    like most folks, bitter cold is
    rough on me too. Christmas Times
    a Coming! … Ken

  • Reply
    October 10, 2014 at 10:09 am

    This is a new tale for me! I will watch the weather to see if this prediction is right. Thanks for the heads up on the winter weather.

  • Reply
    October 10, 2014 at 10:00 am

    My grandson spent the night with me and we decided it was time to open a few persimmon seeds and predict the winter weather. I was only looking for the fork and spoon. Several seeds had what I now know was an image of a knife on one side and a spoon on the other. I never heard the knife folklore, so, I tossed the knife half. My grandson likes to place the seeds under tape and show them at school. he’s keeping his fingers crossed.

  • Reply
    Don Casada
    October 10, 2014 at 9:51 am

    I will try to get out today and check out some persimmons in an area where the tree base is submerged in water throughout the summer, but dry now (TVA lake).
    But I also got to thinking – this time of year, you run across all sorts of scat – possums, foxes, etc. – that is chock full of persimmon seed.
    Since B. Ruth has a lot of critters around her place, maybe she could check out some of those and give us a report, but also provide some guidelines on how to properly interpret the shapes in processed persimmon seeds 😉

  • Reply
    Will Weatherby IV
    October 10, 2014 at 9:48 am

    Somebody stop him!!

  • Reply
    Will Weatherby III
    October 10, 2014 at 9:47 am

    Did you know that pigs have picnics even in the winter?

  • Reply
    Will Weatherby II
    October 10, 2014 at 9:45 am

    Did you know that an abundance of acorns predicts a bad winter? Great for blind pigs, I would say. Although they must wear a scarf and mittens.
    Did you know pigs gathering sticks predicts a bad winter? Seems to me any pig who survives late fall should appreciate any weather he gets.

  • Reply
    Patti Tappel
    October 10, 2014 at 9:42 am

    Our 10 year old grandson came home from school Tuesday asking if we had a persimmon tree. We went and retrieved several ripe persimmons. All three we successfully cut open had spoons.
    Looks like Mid-Missouri is in for snow!

  • Reply
    Will Weatherby
    October 10, 2014 at 9:40 am

    May I presume then that those with no access to persimmon seeds, corn shucks, yellow jackets, wooly worms, et al. may expect to slip directly from autumn into spring?

  • Reply
    Maggie Galliher
    October 10, 2014 at 9:35 am

    I had never heard of this weather prediction method, so of course I had to go looking. A google search revealed more articles than I expected to find. I can’t help wondering whether the various cutlery shapes are all just stages of the same thing (the sprout, I believe). Here’s one amusing blog:

  • Reply
    Mary Lou McKillip
    October 10, 2014 at 9:29 am

    Tipper I recall hearing this , but forgot which stood for snow , ice or mild winter. so the spoon is snow.fork mild winter and the knife sign is iced winter.COOL. We have the big persimmons they get big as a apple and are so good to eat when ripe. T. picks them when they turn yellow and freezing them whole and take out frozen and eat them trough the winter. I have made preserves and put them in cakes for moisture, pretty tasty. Can’t wait to see what the seed holds, some have seeds others do not. The crop this year was down due to so much rain I guess in the spring.Interested post.

  • Reply
    October 10, 2014 at 8:13 am

    No persimmons here, but I’m willing to bet anyone a dollar that it will be cold and snowy here in MA. And that is one bet I would be happy to lose, and would smile while paying up!

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    October 10, 2014 at 7:23 am

    Weather lore is so interesting and fun too.

  • Reply
    October 10, 2014 at 7:19 am

    B.-no its a seed from around my area of Cherokee County NC. I think it looks big because of the way they took the photo : ) Yes it would be neat to see what persimmon seeds in other area show! Maybe some folks will play along : )
    Blind Pig The Acorn
    Celebrating and Preserving the
    Culture of Appalachia

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    October 10, 2014 at 7:17 am

    I’m hearing from different areas that this will be a cold snowy winter. I’d just as soon it weren’t cold and snowy but I don’t have much say in it. LOL!

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    October 10, 2014 at 6:18 am

    Wouldn’t it be fun if people from other states, where little or no snow ever occurs would send in their picture of their persimmon seed! Also, then if people sent in a picture of the seed where snow has already fallen and where winters are always snowy would send in their picture of their seed, we could compare the predictions based on area’s of the country and the accuracy of the persimmon seed omen!
    Just pondering that idea! The ole opossum, of course, doesn’t give a “flying flip” he just wants a good frost so those fruit will ripen well and chill out the yellow jackets!
    Thanks Tipper,
    PS…as I have mentioned the seed here seems not only to have a spoon, it seems to be bending downward with the weight of the heavy wet snow or NOT!
    PSs….Is that one of Jim’s hybrid persimmon seed? Seems like in the picture to be a very large persimmon seed!

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