Growing Pawpaw Trees In The Yards

Growing Pawpaw Trees In The Yards

Pawpaw trees produce the largest edible fruit native, and they’re perfect for backyard gardeners. The aromatic pawpaw fruit has a tropical flavor, resembling creamy custard made from bananas, pineapples and mangos. Pawpaw trees are deciduous plants native to North America. They tend to grow at the lowest level of a forest, under the canopy, and form thick woven patches that can act as ground cover in the wild. A fruit can be harvested from the pawpaw tree that is edible and has the same appearance as a papaya, although the flavor is more like a banana mixed with a peach. The trees are notoriously hard to pollinate, because normal pollinators do not visit the flowers. Home gardeners take an interest in pawpaw trees because they are low maintenance and naturally resistant to most diseases.

The pawpaw tree is a member of the species Asimina triloba, part of the Annonaceae family. It is the only member of the family that grows outside of tropical climates. Even though pawpaw trees often act as ground cover, they grow to an average size of 10 to 30 feet (3 to 9 meters). The tree has long, dark green hanging leaves. These trees naturally grow beneath the forest canopy, so they require only partial sun to grow and have difficulty tolerating full sun.

Growing Pawpaw Tree In The Backyard

Growing Pawpaw Tree In The Backyard

Pawpaws are small, rarely reaching over 25 feet tall. At around 6 feet, seedling pawpaws begin to bear fruit.

Pawpaw Tree In The Garden

Pawpaw Tree In The Garden

Although pawpaw is a forest understory tree in the wild, when cultivated it needs full-sun exposure in order to have good fruit production.

Outdoor Pawpaw Tree In The Garden

Outdoor Pawpaw Tree In The Garden

Combining a tropical-tasting fruit with a tree able to withstand winter cold, pawpaw (Asimina triloba) grows in eastern U.S. forests from Michigan to the Gulf Coast.

Pawpaw Tree With Fruits In The Yard

Pawpaw Tree With Fruits In The Yard

The largest edible fruit native to North America, the pawpaw will grow pretty much anywhere, although it does best in the Northeast.

Backyard Garden With Pawpaw Tree

Backyard Garden With Pawpaw Tree

Pawpaws (Asimina triloba) are small deciduous trees that can fit into almost any landscape.

Medium Pawpaw Tree In The Yard

Medium Pawpaw Tree In The Yard

Pawpaws prefer a moist, fertile soil. The soil should be slightly acidic to neutral and well-drained. Prepare a soil that is rich in organic matter by working a thick layer of compost deep into the soil.

Outdoor Pawpaw Tree In The Backyard Garden

Outdoor Pawpaw Tree In The Backyard Garden

Pawpaw trees can’t pollinate themselves, so you will need two different types of trees to produce fruit. To further complicate matters, the insects that pollinate pawpaws aren’t efficient or abundant, so you may have to fertilize the trees by hand to get a good crop.

Tall Backyard Pawpaw Tree

Tall Backyard Pawpaw Tree

Pawpaw trees grow best in direct sunlight with protection from winds, but must be shaded during the first two years of growth.

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