How to Grow a Papaya Tree

Gardenerdy Staff Dec 11, 2018
If you live in a region which experiences a warm or tropical climate, then you must use it to the best of your advantage. This type of climate is best suited for the growth of papaya. Growing your very own papaya tree in your backyard is not at all difficult. Here we show you how.
All you need is lots of sunlight, fertile and well-drained soil, and no frost or snow. Since it is a tropical plant, the papaya tree thrives best in a tropical or sunny and climate.
If you do not have a garden, you can still grow a papaya plant in a big pot indoors. Its beautiful trumpet-shaped leaves and small white flowers make it a great ornamental plant to beautify your terrace or patio.
The best way to grow a papaya tree is from its seeds. There are two ways of going about it. One, you can buy a good quality, organic papaya fruit, and use the seeds inside, or you can directly buy its seeds from a nursery.
If you are opting for the former, it is best to cut the fruit in half, remove the seeds and dry them in the sun before planting them. For best results, clean the gelatinous matter around the seeds in running water before drying. Make sure you dry them for a day or two before planting them, as over drying can make the seed lose the germinating features.
Before you plant the seeds, you need to first prepare the soil. Papaya seeds need a lot of nutrients to germinate and propagate, so fertile soil is a must. If you live in a tropical or subtropical climate, then you have a natural advantage as you do not need to toil to make the plant grow.
To prepare the soil, dig a hole in the ground, rake the soil with a spade, and add organic manure to increase its nutrient content. If the soil is strewn with rocks and is too dry, the seeds are not going to propagate. Sprinkle a few seeds into the hole and cover it with compost and soil.
After a few weeks, you will notice that some of the small seedlings have started to germinate.
Some of them will be more robust with abundant leaves and shoots, while others might be weak. Remove any weak plants as they only leach nutrients from the soil.
Keep six to seven plant saplings since you cannot ascertain whether the saplings are male, female, or bisexual, and only the female papaya plant is capable of producing fruits. After a few weeks, when they are about a meter tall, the plants start flowering.
At this point, you will be able to recognize a female plant from a male one, since the female plant bears thick and luxurious leaves with single blooms. The plant should be watered adequately, but you should take care not to over water it, as that may cause its fragile roots to rot.
A papaya tree fruits all year round, after 7-11 months of planting, as long as it receives plenty of sunlight and nutrients.
If you want to plant one in a pot or a container, that can be done too. You just need to germinate the seeds in a pot which is filled with well-drained potting soil. Keep the plant in the balcony or on your terrace where it can receive plenty of sunlight, so that it can thrive in the pot.