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How are your papaws doing?
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DanielW
Clark County, WA
519 Posts
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1
May 26, 2016 - 7:36 am

Do forum members have pawpaw trees?  How are they doing?

 

I have two 4-year old (Sunflower, NC1), one 3-year old (Rebecca's Gold), one 2-year old (Mango), and one 1-year old (Allegheney).  I didn't epect anything from the three smaller ones, but Sunflower and NC-1 bloomed exuberantly, I hand pollinated them, had lots of fruit set...  then all but one fruit fell off.  I don't know if that one will make it.

photo was before fruit drop - not it's only one fruit remaining on one flower stem.  Oh well.

 

pawpaw fruit set

 

The two older trees are about 6 foot tall and look healthy.  Maybe they just need another year or two for fruit to set and stay set?  Maybe it was the hot weather when blooming, then a cooler spell?  They look healthy, lush green leaves.  Wait another year.

Interestingly, the Mango is only about 18 inches tall and had 2 flower buds.  I'm not surprised those didn't set.

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jafar
582 Posts
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2
May 26, 2016 - 11:51 am

Isn't is exciting!  Please keep us apprised with pictures. At that size, I don't think you're out of the woods yet, but those are lovely.

I got a few on one of my little trees last year.  This year none set, but I wasn't on hand to help with the pollination and the weather was rainy for weeks.

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John S
PDX OR
2549 Posts
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May 27, 2016 - 11:18 pm

My sunflower set fruit heavily last year, but they fell off on a hot, dry spell.  I'm going to have to get in there and water it when we have another 80's-90's and no rain for a few days. Back east, it rains a lot when it's hot in the summer so they don't really experience that. I've seen a lot of leaf damage when it's hot and dry, so I water them in that situation.

My Wells pawpaw is quite big-like 8 feet, but doesn't flower yet. I think it needs more sun.  I may have to graft it and move a seedling or something.  Anyone around here successfully graft pawpaws? I haven't yet.

John S
PDX OR

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DanielW
Clark County, WA
519 Posts
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4
May 28, 2016 - 9:35 am

John if you want some scion, my NC-1 can spare some.  My guess is late winter/early spring is best. I read most grafting methods work for pawpaws, except for T-budding.  My Rebecca's Gold is smaller but I can probably give you scion from each of those, too.  If Mango has a stray branch, that too, but I would have to check that one before promising any, still quite small.  Mango bloomed this year at 18 inches tall, and has some shade too.  Looks vigorous.

 

Mine are well mulched.  They have not wilted, even the ones that I planted mid summer in 2012.  The fruit drop happened after a brief early hot spell we had, when it chilled again.  I agree with you this is not the pawpaw's normal climate and I bet our lack of humidity is part of the picture.

 

I wondered if last year's fruit drop was too much nitrogen, which I read can happen with persimmons, so I did not fertilize NC-1 or Sunflower this year.

 

I was hoping to mix up their genetics a little - Mango is from Georgia, Sunflower is from Kansas, and NC-1 is Davis (Michigan) X Overleese (Indiana) - listed as being from Ontario but it is the genetiucs that counts.  Rebecca's Gold is from Michigan - sourced seeds.   My theory, which I will probably not live long enough to prove, is that my mixing up the genetics of pawpaws from widely disparate places, they will be less specifically adapted to one area's climate - Georgia vs. Kansas vs. Michigan, and more likely to do well in other areas.  I also started an Allegheney this year, but it is patented and I could not find the source of its parents, Peterson might not have kept track.  If that one remaining fruit remains on Sunflower, it is either Sunflower X NC-1 or Sunflower X Mango, either of which would be OK.  I did not keep track of the pollination but NC-1 provided the majority of pollen for the Sunflower pawpaw tree.

Provenance for pawpaw varieties (source info Kentucky State).

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sweepbjames
NE Portland, OR Cully Neighborhood
208 Posts
(Offline)
5
June 6, 2016 - 6:06 pm

Is it possible that timing of the hand pollinating contributed to the no take? My early attempts were not so successful. Early on, I wasn’t aware of the blossoms progression from female receptive, to male- pollen giving.  Questions to this forum led to further investigation; and a couple of  flowering seasons later, what I’d consider a successful resultant fruiting. 

O.K. 8 fruit the first attempt year, seemed like lots of blossoms; me with paint brush running back and forth between two trees, no attention to flower details. 38 fruit the second attempt, Thought I had it nailed that time, optimistic but still a disappointing result when looking at the many flowers visited. More questions and reading up on PawPaw websites. Better idea of what’s going on with those blossoms. (not a quick study, I am). The 2 next years about 150 and just under 200 fruit between the mango and wilson trees. I thought that areas of the trees were producing fruit that I hadn’t worked, so last year did not hand pollinate to see what showed up, in terms of natural pollinators. Didn’t see for sure any one in particular bug. surmised a tiny fruit fly sized something or another and maybe a pretty small, narrow flying “beetle looking” type thing, both around when in flower. The mango had fruit numbers around 85. Wilson around 8 or 9 fruits.  (Wilson flowers before and continues beyond the flowering of the mango.) So the natural pollinators finally are showing up..

Last week when this thread took me out to look, I found this…. looking like it could be a candidate. But, I don’t know bugs and there were really no viable flower sets left.IMG_1887-1.jpg

This year some fruit on both trees without my help, but not too abundant near as I can tell yet. They hide pretty well and are higher in the trees mostly this year.

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mazehavoc
Ann Arbor MI
2 Posts
(Offline)
6
June 18, 2016 - 2:30 pm

Hello I was excited to see this post 🙂  I acquired 2 Paw Paw trees Shenandoah and Susquehanna last fall and planted them in front yard.  They survived the winter well but came out of dormancy about 2 weeks apart.  The Shenandoah had numerous blooms but were completely spent by the the the Susquehanna had its lone blossom :(.   I talked to the nursery orchard where I bought them and was told it could take a couple of years for them to sink up.  So I wait!  Actually better for the trees to mature but I want it NOW. 😉  I see someone mentioned hand pollinating and different times in the bloom development to make this possiable.  Would one of you explain or point me to a reference for this?  

I have never had any kind of fruit tree ( now I have 3 Paw Paw, Fig and Asian Persimmon). I have no idea about pruning, shaping or any thing.  I hope to find someone on this forum to take me under their wing and teach me.

 

May you always enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Mazehavoc

May you always enjoy the fruit of your labor!

Mazehavoc

Dale D.

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John S
PDX OR
2549 Posts
(Offline)
7
June 27, 2016 - 4:48 pm

Like others have said, the Kentucky state site is great info for pollination. I had to read it about 15 times to actually understand it.
John S
PDXO R

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jafar
582 Posts
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8
June 28, 2016 - 9:43 pm

Daniel, I think we're about due for an updated picture.

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DanielW
Clark County, WA
519 Posts
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9
July 4, 2016 - 7:40 pm

Jafar, bad news.  Every small fruit fell off.  There are none remaining.  🙁

Now it's up to the persimmons to supply me with obscure fruits.  If they continue to grow, there should be some on Nikita's Gift andf Saijo, although the Saijo look different from what I anticipated.

Not wanting to derail myself too much, but here are examples of the developing persimmons.

Saijo

developing Saijpo persimmons

Nikita's Gift

developing persimmon Nikitas Gift

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jafar
582 Posts
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10
July 4, 2016 - 8:37 pm

Bummer about the pawpaws.  I've had that happen too.

Maybe the Saijo fruit will elongate as they enlarge.  As you know, my Saijo was very badly mislabeled (or it was just rootstock).

The HOS Arboretum has Saijo, as does John I believe, if more scions or an ID are required.

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John S
PDX OR
2549 Posts
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11
July 9, 2016 - 9:32 am

I don't have saijo. It didn't take.  

My WElls Pawpaw isn't flowering. I don't think it's in enough sun. They are a drag to transplant when they become 12 feet high. I think I'm going to try to graft it to a seedling on the other side of the yard. 

John S
PDX OR

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DanielW
Clark County, WA
519 Posts
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12
July 21, 2016 - 7:39 am

John, I'm impressed if you can transplant such a large pawpaw.  That would be quite a feat.  I understand they bear better in the sun, but wondering about the shade issue since they are an understory tree in the forest.  I thought it would get at least some flowers.  But I don't have any  other explanation.

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John S
PDX OR
2549 Posts
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13
July 27, 2016 - 11:21 am

I think that shade in a Kentucky summer where it cools down to 91 degrees all night is different than shade up here in the PNW.  
John S
PDX OR

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sweepbjames
NE Portland, OR Cully Neighborhood
208 Posts
(Offline)
14
October 13, 2016 - 6:12 am

Well my Mango and Wilson Pawpaws Did come through, pleasinglyKiss, after all. Mango had around  a hundred and a quarter fruit set, while the wilson numbered about 35. Wilson is finished while mango has maybe twenty percent left ripening. My illusion is that, for the most part, the fruits higher up the tree ripen first.  

Some critters are munching a few ripe fruits. Hadn't seen that before. squirrels I'm pretty sure and possibly some Jays up in the tree. I suspect maybe an opossum taking advantage of overnight dropped fruit.  Nobody goes after under developed fruit more than a nibble, Confusedonce seems to be enough for  'em to try that.

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jafar
582 Posts
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15
October 13, 2016 - 1:31 pm

James, I'd love to taste Mango if you could manage to get one to the show.  I think I've only tasted seedlings, or unlabeled fruit.

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DanielW
Clark County, WA
519 Posts
(Offline)
16
October 13, 2016 - 1:49 pm

My NC-1 is about 8 feet tall and Sunflower around 7 feet.  Maybe each is a foot taller than my guess.  Still hoping for next year.  Im assuming their pollen is cross compatible.  My little Mango also bloomed at 3 foot so might pollen source too.

Any thoughts on fertilizing?  I give nitrogen to the little ones but not the big ones.  I read high nitrogen can cause fruit drop for persimmons but no idea for pawpaws.  My soil test looks low for calcium and borderline for magnesium, good for most other minerals.  I added lime and some epson salts.  Maybe need more lime now for next year.

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sweepbjames
NE Portland, OR Cully Neighborhood
208 Posts
(Offline)
17
October 17, 2016 - 10:39 pm

Maybe I've been lucky, but I have been mostly under the impression that the trees should just live in the soil they are to be planted in. Amending beyond a little home grown compost in the hole at planting time, is pretty much beyond my ken. Huh, vegetables, i understand, if you want leaf- add nitrogen, If you want fruit- not nitrogen, some other element.

I've got pretty clayey soil, planted just outside the drip line of a conifer. A couple of years running I did mulch with Hawthorn litter from the driveway.

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jafar
582 Posts
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18
October 20, 2016 - 8:44 pm

James,

Thank you for the fruit.  One of them was especially good with a great custardy texture and mild flavor.  Maybe I'll bury some of the seeds and see if they come up naturally.

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John S
PDX OR
2549 Posts
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19
November 16, 2016 - 10:16 pm

My sunflower had it's first fruit this year. Quite tasty. My completely unscientific theory is that if it can get through a stage of fruit bearing, it will be stronger for the next year. In other words, if it can flower, it will continue to flower.  If it can set fruit, it will do that again.  The hormones and nutrition have set it up so that it "knows" how to do that now.

I didn't move the wells pawpaw. I tried to graft it onto some seedlings. We'll see how they do. I haven't had luck in pawpaw grafting, but hope springs eternal among obscure fruit growers.

John S
PDX OR

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FruitGardener
Vista, CA, USA
22 Posts
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20
April 3, 2022 - 5:03 pm

I have about a dozen grafted Pawpaw saplings obtained a year or so ago from Peaceful Heritage, One Green World, and Planting Justice. Originally there were more, but several from the latter source had graft failures, plus maybe a few from the others too.

They have just begun to break dormancy, pushing out tiny leaves here and there, and the Overleese has declared its satisfaction with a flower bud!

Overleese flower bud

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John S
PDX OR
2549 Posts
(Offline)
21
April 4, 2022 - 5:31 pm

My "Wells" pawpaw has clearly shown that it is not the Wells cultivar. So it is really just unnamed seedling of pawpaw. It tastes good, but I wanted to buy Wells because it was one of the varieties, like Sunflower, that is low in the possibly harmful chemical in pawpaws.

John S
PDX OR

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FruitGardener
Vista, CA, USA
22 Posts
(Offline)
22
April 4, 2022 - 6:19 pm

20 years ago the lifetime pharmaceutical dosage of Annonacin was 90mg. I don't know if that's changed. It is delivered topically to kill cancer cells - often by injection directly into the cell mass. Repression of prostate cancer is a common application. Orally is not recommended because it also kills nerve cells and passes through the brain's blood barrier. 

I believe the quantity in pawpaw fruit is 0.05mg to 0.1mg depending on fruit size and cultivar. This is 1% to 2% of the quantity in Cherimoya. The concentration in the leaves is higher. Commercially it is the leaves of soursop that are harvested for the drug.

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John S
PDX OR
2549 Posts
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23
April 8, 2022 - 9:19 pm

Good info fruit gardener. There have been some people that have gotten sick from eating the leaves.  A lot of the leaves.

John S
PDX OR

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Rooney
Vancouver SW Washington
647 Posts
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24
April 8, 2022 - 11:02 pm

I have two pawpaw trees. I can't eat much and it's good to know how it is that I am one of those that can't stomach much pulp of pawpaw fruits. 

I also have squirrels that stay active all winter long. They garner maple seeds and sow them. When they grow I weed them from everywhere. I think the pawpaw seeds from all the pawpaw fruits that goes uneaten are trying to weed out squirrels because I often see individuals having nervous fits and spasms. Kind of like a human epilepsy attack, only it can go on and off every few seconds. So that must be caused from consuming pawpaw seeds out of squirrels forgetting where former maple seeds got planted during food scarcity (ie. winters). 

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FruitGardener
Vista, CA, USA
22 Posts
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25
April 8, 2022 - 11:05 pm

The symptoms you describe are not those of Annonacin.

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Rooney
Vancouver SW Washington
647 Posts
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26
April 8, 2022 - 11:24 pm

Thanks. Since the condition was always outside of a danger of height then it's likely a fun habit the squirrel is acting upon. Like a way of a mouse or rat in a cage running a wheel.

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