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PawPaw in your Food Forest  RSS feed

 
gardener
Posts: 723
Location: south central VA 7B
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interesting idea Steven - never really considered as it would be like dehydrating pudding, but I've dehydrated honey, so I'll give it a go - bet it would be like candy!
 
steward
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When do paw paws become ripe? (Of course, that depends on where you are. . . ) Like, in relation to other fruits. Same time as early apples? late apples? cherries? peaches?

I planted two paw paws from Stark a few years ago. One of them is thriving and is maybe 8 feet tall, the other one has stayed small and this spring didn't leaf out until very late (I was worried it had died). The smaller one apparently died back to that part of the tree that had been under the snow cover, so, more sensitive to the Wisconsin cold.

Anyway, the big one flowered nicely this spring (same time as the apple trees and lilacs, as you can see):

Oh, and I didn't notice any bad odor when I was taking these pictures. So, they smell like rotten meat, but not strongly.

I think the other one had just itty bitty leaves (or no visible leaves) at that point, so no cross-pollination occurred (unless there is some other paw paw in Waunakee!). Nevertheless, the bigger paw paw tree started developing fruit. There were four, then three, then two and now just one fruit hanging on. I'm a little worried it's also going to drop off undeveloped, but it is getting bigger. . . .
 
Marianne Cicala
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sounds like an impressive "spring drop". They'll drop set fruit if they cannot sustain it. We gather them from the forest floor, in early September in southern VA. (Don't know if that's truly the right way, but the older folks around here told that's how they gathered pawpaws, unlike most other fruits). It's our last fruit of the season.
 
Julia Winter
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Oh, if you tend to find the paw paws in early September that far south, I'm unlikely to get to taste the paw paw on my tree. We are moving to Portland, Oregon and I'm leaving near the end of August.

Bummer.
 
Marianne Cicala
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If I can actually dehydrate some, I'll send some to you as a house warming. I'd pluck that bad boy (if he's still there) and harvest the seeds before you head out. Good luck!!
 
Julia Winter
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Thanks! So, you're thinking about dehydrating paw paws? Probably the best preservation technique, since they don't like being cooked. . .
 
Marianne Cicala
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going to give it a go - Steven threw that suggestion out there; don't know if it'll work since it's like pudding, but not try? I figured I'd spread it thin on parchment paper like honey and see. May take a week....hahaha
 
Posts: 319
Location: (Zone 7-8/Elv. 350) Powhatan, VA (Sloped Forests & Meadow)
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@Marianne

Sorry for the late response...

LOL, That explains a lot! We could trench them as you suggested; I think you are right about the screened porch, even with it being heavily sheltered. On the ones we transplanted into our raised fence bed; any suggestions? They do seem to all be thriving, while other items we planted are having a bit of transplant shock and are recovering. Please do save us any pots you can spare! We will be getting a lot of seedlings of various species in bulk and not all will be able to be planted immediately. We have gotten quite a few pots this past year from a landscaping company, but none in a few months now. Do shoot us a pm / email on how the pawpaws dehydrate for you; I would think it would work, and it would extend the sales season significantly!
 
Marianne Cicala
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We literally have 100s and 100s of pots - gotta love our customers for bringing the empties back.
 
Cortland Satsuma
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Location: (Zone 7-8/Elv. 350) Powhatan, VA (Sloped Forests & Meadow)
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@Marianne

Thank You! Do you get any extra of small starter pots? I would think you need most of those for your spring sales; if not, please save for us!
 
Marianne Cicala
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I use the 4", just finished splitting the perennials into 1G and don't have many of that size at the moment. If you're talking about little 4 pack size, I do have some as I can't legally reuse those. We can nose around and see what you can use.
 
Cortland Satsuma
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Location: (Zone 7-8/Elv. 350) Powhatan, VA (Sloped Forests & Meadow)
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@Marianne

I use the 4" ones usually; however, any 6" rounds would work too. Thanks for thinking of us!
 
Posts: 242
Location: South Central Idaho
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What is a typical time from seed to fruiting on Pawpaw? Would I still be alive?
 
Julia Winter
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Well, Steven, that depends. How healthy are you??

I planted my paw paws (in Wisconsin, not their usual habitat) I think 4 years ago, but maybe 3. I'm having my first fruit this year, but it might fall off (like the others did earlier this summer--started with 5 fruits in the spring) secondary to not being pollinated. I would say for best success plant more like 4 or 5 of them. They like to grow in little colonies anyway, at least, that's what I saw in southern Illinois in the woods. Partial sun, too--they are usually growing next to other trees.
 
Steven Feil
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Not clear in your response. Was that from SEED or SEEDLING? If from seedling, how old were they?
 
Julia Winter
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ahh, good point. Those were seedlings I got from Stark Brothers. So, it's probably more like 6-7 years until you get fruit. If I do this again, I might plant three seedlings and 10 seeds, figuring that the grown-from-seed trees will have longer healthier lives. (if the fruit from the site-grown trees isn't yummy, I could graft some of the named specimens onto them)
 
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Hi all,

Just one additional thing to consider with Paw paws that I learned from Doug Elliot:
They can be tricky to fruit in a forest since they require pollination from a different paw paw variety. Paw paw patches in the wild are generally the propagation of one singular Pawpaw tree suckering out. Also the flowers are protogynous, meaning that the stigma (the female receptive organ) ripens before the pollen, and is no longer receptive when the pollen is shed and since they do not self pollinate, a pawpaw patch may not produce fruit. Various blossom timing between varieties may also increase the degree of difficulty in setting fruit. Just some things to consider. We're growing a few each of a couple completely different varieties to maximize our fruiting vector, and if natural pollinators aren't successful, hand pollination will be in order.
 
Steven Feil
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Sounds like they are supposed to be a low yield crop then. That is the first time I have read that they require a different variety too.
 
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@ Cortland

I live in very similar weather conditions as yours, about 50 miles away from your place. So far the rule is that my PawPaw blossom got lost because of freezing temperatures.
 
Julia Winter
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Given that my paw-paws bloomed in Wisconsin, I think you should be able to get them to bloom in zone 7 (or even 6). If you have the trees in a particularly warm micro-climate sometimes they "wake up" too early in the spring. What I would do with my peach tree was dump a couple of loads of snow (from clearing the driveway) under it when we had a bunch of snow. This helped it stay dormant a little longer in the spring.
 
Cortland Satsuma
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Location: (Zone 7-8/Elv. 350) Powhatan, VA (Sloped Forests & Meadow)
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@ Miet


That is not good to hear...We had a very late snow this spring it was probably why that happened. I think Janet's advise may solve that problem for both you and I. Glad to find some else in our neck of the woods! Are you north, south, east or west of us? Do you tend to also run about a half a zone warmer than your stated zone?
 
gardener
Posts: 1524
Location: Ladakh, Indian Himalayas at 10,500 feet, zone 5
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I would like to order some pawpaw seeds within the next week (due to travel) but the best recommended sites I found were out of stock. Can anyone recommend a good source please? These are for a climate with a cold winter and warm sunny summer, probably zone 5.

Would this year's fruits already have fruited and produced seed? Are pawpaw seeds dried and can be stored till spring, or should I plant them as soon as possible?
 
Steven Feil
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If you are truly in the location in your side bar you may have trouble getting seed from the US.
 
Rebecca Norman
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Um, well, I'm in the US right now but gong back next week. Sounds like pawpaw might do well there, and we've got a lot of space so it might be nice to plant several from seed... But are seeds available right now?
 
Julia Winter
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It's hard to come by. You might want to look for the fruits and just save the seeds from those. They are most common in the south and southern Midwest. We called them the "Indiana banana" but they grow well in southern Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama. . .
 
pollinator
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Hello Rebecca, Paw Paw seeds are available on ebay right now with quick delivery. A few years back I purchased some from several different ebay sellers. They must be fresh and never let to dry out. Upon receiving them I put them in the refrigerator, wraped in a damp cloth for a few months for stratification and to keep them fresh till spring. In the spring I planted them in tall pots (paw paw has a long fast growing taproot). I kept them in pots for a full year bringing the potted paw paws sprouts inside during the winter months. The following year I planted them in the garden zone 5/6 with an 85% success rate. Hope this helps.
 
Posts: 8
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Hi, I am looking into planting a couple of pawpaws, but find various info on their height. Raintree Nursery's catalog says that the varieties they sell only grow to 10' in the Northwest US, Oikos Nursery in Michigan says the variety they sell grows to 30' in their location. Does anyone in zone 5-6 have any info on the height for each variety of pawpaws they have grown? Thanks.
 
Steven Feil
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Marianne Cooper wrote:interesting idea Steven - never really considered as it would be like dehydrating pudding, but I've dehydrated honey, so I'll give it a go - bet it would be like candy!



Any luck with the dehydrating yet?

Still looking for a reliable and REASONABLE place to get a couple of trees.
 
Posts: 34
Location: NH and MO
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I sure hope I can get paw paw to grow in my forest, I can't wait to try.
 
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Hello Everyone,

I spent a few hours Wednesday visiting a nearby orchard. It was several acres devoted to persimmons and pawpaws. I was blown away. Totally amazing.

The owner of the orchard told me a story about when he visited Purdue University. They had planted several hundred pawpaws in 6 inches of mulch with a built-in irrigation system. All the trees were in full sun. He told them that pawpaws require shade for the first two years. Their response was, "that's just an old wives' tale". About 80% of the trees died in the first two years. He ended the story, "Purdue University shades all of their pawpaw seedlings now"

He uses milk jugs or plastic tubes to shade his trees. He believes full sun is best after two years.

I am going to plant my seeds in shade (from existing trees). If they grow, they will never get full sun because they will be deliberately placed in the under-story. Only time will tell if the pawpaws will thrive in shade as mature trees.

I hope someone benefits from this tip.

Peace,
 
Marianne Cicala
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Sorry - been a bit busy. OK - LOADs of pawpaws this year considering the late frost. Still haven't gotten around to drying them, but have had a heck of a time eating them. I took some to the farmer's market and was amazed how many locals had never had them - they sold quickly. We saved a bunch of seeds, didn't clean them so they were surrounded with some of their goo in a zip lock in the frig. We took 1G pots, 3/4 full of black diamond seeding soil, covered the entire top with seeds (clean just prior to planting) approx 20 per pot, then put about 1.5" of perlite on top. They should all root - major tap roots in native pawpaws. We plan to separate them in about 2 months into their own pots, then dig them in (pots & all) for the winter on a southern slope. Natives grow on the edges of deciduous forest in southern VA, but want dappled sun during the heat, so we'll pull them out and put them in the woods in late spring. I've sent a few seeds to all but 1 person that's requested them and after I send some to Rich (I haven't forgotten you) I'll be out.
One guy who stopped by our booth mentioned pawpaw bruille, which is on my list of culinary yumminess.
pawpaw.JPG
[Thumbnail for pawpaw.JPG]
 
Marianne Cicala
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OK - I've read some stuff on other pawpaw threads that is not so, at least in southern VA. Native or wild pawpaw do not need cross pollination - they are truly self pollinating. They are also not necessary all upshoots of a mother tree. We have many wild groves in the forest here - certainly not a result of suckers. The named cultivars are almost always grafted onto a native root stock. pawpaw trees are also amongst a butterfly's favorite habitat and if you look closely, you'll see plenty of cocoons. Butterflies are also a major pollinator of the natives. They can be dug and moved but ONLY in the very late spring or early summer. unlike most fruits that loose a small % of the roots in winter, the pawpaw looses far more than 1/2. So, unlike most fruits that prefer dormant transplant, the pawpaw does not. Fall is NOT the time to plant these trees so don't get excited about fall sales as the rate of success is very low.
 
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we just picked a bunch from a patch we found this summer while running coon dogs. came back and lucked out on guessing when they start to ripen. i wish i had some of the grafted varieties, they get up to a pound each on some of them i was told, and the taste doesnt vary like the wild ones are known to do. the ones we found were for the most part heavenly, every now and again, you will get one from a free where they have a turpentine after taste almost.

 
Dale Howard
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right now its easy to tell if the young paw paws trees are suckers or seedlings. the suckers will be 3-4 feet tall, and the seedlings will be just a few inches tall since they bust ground around july/august. they wont be but 3-6 inches tall by the time the leaves fall off.
 
Marianne Cicala
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I've mashed & frozen in the past and it does freeze well. I'm still going to give dehydration a go - it's on my Wed. list. I'll let you know.
 
gardener
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here in west pa, the pawpaw season is delayed due to a cool summer, esp August
normally they start ripening 1st week of Sept
so far i've had 5 ripe ones
I spent this weekend at a local heritage festival where i normally display pawpaws
I was only able to give out small "tastes" and still ran out

this years crop is about 1/2 of last years due to crappy spring
 
Steven Feil
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Some of our elderberries are doing the same thing. Last year on our anniversary (9/21) there were TONS of them. This year they are still all green.
 
duane hennon
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Pawpaws: The Gateway Fruit to Permaculture

http://www.ellwoodcityledger.com/news/local_news/harmony-man-champions-pawpaw-s-good-points/article_2d643673-392c-511e-9bf8-a7ee0f7d3d86.html

a good way to introduce people to permaculture without preaching
most of the people who attend these shows have no idea what food forests or permaculture are
so instead of introducing a bunch of new terms, I just say "this is where these plants like to grow"
and if that means piling a bunch of leaves, sticks, rotting logs in your yard, so be it
 
Christa Walker
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Location: NE Massachusetts
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I have ordered two paw paws. It seems that they naturally grow to 25 feet tall, even in my area, but can be maintained at 10-15 feet. This is a great thread - I'm looking forward to trying the paw paw in 3-4 years
 
Posts: 71
Location: NJ
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A few years back the NJ department of forestry nursery was selling seedlings 100 for $35-40 but they sold out of them quick. I haven't seen them for sale again in the last 3-4 years. Supposedly they are native to NJ as well but I have never seen one in the wild. I have never met anyone who is growing them here in NJ though. If anyone is local or would like to ship me some seeds I will gladly buy them off you. Judging from all the comments on the long tap root I am guess I should stay away from seedlings.
Dave
 
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