Paw Paw




PawPaw fruit

The PawPaw is a uniquely American fruit. The fruit is an interesting dull green that blends nearly perfectly with the forest leaves. When ripe, the golden orange flesh becomes quite fragrant and can be found with a good nose. That fragrance attracts all the forest animals that feast on the pulp and spread the large seeds far and wide.

Typically found in deep moist forest situations it is far more adaptable and grows best in full sun. It grows well in the forest because it does not compete well with grass but if well mulched it makes a beautiful almost tropical looking small tree. It also fruits much better in full sun. It is no different than other plants in that it needs sunlight to produce the energy to support flowers and fruit. It is a basic formula for any tree, Sunlight= Flowers =Fruit.

PawPaws grow in colonies in the forest and many of these colonies are genetically identical since all the trees are grown as root suckers from a parent tree. One of the reason they are so hard to transplant from the wild is that small plants have very few roots of their own. They are growing from the parents root system. This can also be the reason they fruit so lightly in the wild, they need cross pollination from other pawpaws.

PawPaws bloom very early in spring before the surrounding trees have leafed out. They depend on flies to pollinate their flowers and the flowers are said to have the fragrance of rotting meat.

The leaves are large almost Magnolia like and semi-glossy.When bruised, the leaves have a disagreable odor. The bark is smooth and grey. In deep shade they can grow to 30′ or 40′ tall. In full sun they will grow 20′ to 25′.

PawPaw Flower

Our trees are seedlings so fruit quality will be variable. We have grafted improved varieties in the past, perhaps we will do so again in the future.

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