SelecTree: Tree Detail

PAPAYA
Carica papaya

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Photo Locations: Hawaiian Islands

General Notes

A ubiquitous small fruit tree grown commonly in home gardens and backyards, as well as plantations. They perform best in full sunlight, and can produce nutritious, tasty fruit year round. It is used in various ways as food: dried, baked, candied, made into jam, juiced. The fruit contains the enzyme papain, which breaks down proteins. The fruits were also used medicinally by early Hawaiians. Carica papaya has a HPWRA (Hawai'i Pacific Weed Risk Assessment) score of 2 (Evaluate).

Native to Mexico and northern South America.

Trees may be referred to as male or female.

Family: Caricaceae

Additional Common Names

PAPAYA, PAWPAW

Tree Characteristics

Erect with a High Canopy.

Rounded Shape.

Has Evergreen foliage.

Height: 25 - 30 feet.

Width: 5 feet.

Growth Rate: 24 Inches per Year.

Leaves Deeply Palmately Lobed, Green, No Change, Evergreen.

Flowers Showy. White. Flowers in Fall, Winter, Spring or Summer. Has either male or female reproductive parts (dioecious). Trees may be sold as male or female.

Prolific, Orange Red Berry, Very Large (Over 3.00 inches), fruiting in Fall, Winter, Spring or Summer Edible and Wildlife use it.

Bark Light Brown, Scaly or Smooth.

Shading Capacity Rated as Low in Leaf.

Litter Issue is Wet Fruit.

Tree Site Conditions & Constraints

Sunset Zones H1, H2.

USDA Hardiness Zones 10 - 11.

Exposure Full Sun.

Well Drained Soil.

Loam or Sand Texture.

Neutral to Slightly Alkaline Soil pH.

Seaside Tolerance is Good.

Pests & Disease Information

Resistant to Some cultivars resistant to Phytophthora. Susceptible to Spider Mites, Fruit Flies, Red Mites, Ringspot Virus, Anthracnose, Rot.

Health, Safety & Environmental Concerns

Root Damage Potential Rated as High.

Irritant Health Hazard.

Desirable Wildlife Plant.

Attracts Birds.

Deer Palatable.

Wildlife use Fruit.

Special Uses & Values

Fruit Tree, Landscape Ornamental.

Cite this tree:
SelecTree. "Carica papaya Tree Record." 1995-2020. Sep 29, 2020.
< https://selectree.calpoly.edu/tree-detail/carica-papaya >

This tree is not part of the SelecTree Nursery Connection. If you would like to see this tree listed, or know of a nursery that sells it, please contact us at ufei@calpoly.edu.