Papaya

Carica papaya

Photo/Illustration: 
Little and Lewis
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Papaya (Carica papaya)
Genus:  Carica
The papaya is a herbaceous, fast-growing shrub that grows best in tropical and subtropical climates where it will flower continually, but it will perform in colder climates from high summer to early fall. It offers a striking sculptural presence to the landscape due to its lobed, 2-foot-across leaves and large, delicious fruit (sometimes reaching 20 pounds).
Noteworthy Characteristics:  Plants will die below 32°F. Large, edible fruit. Tropical-looking leaves. Short-lived, so it is best to always have some younger plants on hand.
Care:  Best fruit production comes in full sun, but will tolerate shade. Needs rich, well-drained soil. Provide mulch.
Propagation:  Wash seeds well and sow immediately. Cover with soil and germinate in a warm, bright place. Watch for damping off. Water seedlings very well in the summer but less frequently in the winter. Repot frequently.
Problems:  Nematodes.

Overview

Height
10 ft. to 15 ft.
Growth Pace
Fast Grower
Light
Full Sun to Part Shade
Moisture
Medium Moisture
Maintenance
Moderate
Characteristics
Showy Flowers,
Showy Foliage,
Showy Fruit
Bloom Time
Summer
Flower Color
White Flower,
Yellow Flower
Uses
Beds and Borders,
Specimen Plant/Focal Point
Seasonal Interest
Summer Interest
Type
Shrubs

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