How to Grow Papaya | Growing Papaya Tree and Care

I.Learn how to grow papaya tree. Growing papaya is perfect for gardeners who like to grow easy to grow fruit trees. Papaya tree care is simple, it is low maintenance and productive.

Other Names— Banane de Prairie, Caricae Papayae Folium, Carica papaya, Carica peltata, Carica posoposa, Chirbhita, Erandachirbhita, Erand Karkati, Green Papaya, Mamaerie, Melonenbaumblaetter, Melon Tree, Papaw, Pawpaw, Papaya Fruit, Papayas, Papaye, Papaye Verte, Papayer, Papita.

how to grow papaya

Papaya (Carica papaya L.) is native to the tropics of Mexico and Central America. This fruit for high nutritional value, great taste and medicinal properties.

Papaya is mainly consumed as a fruit, but it is also used for making soft drinks, juices, pickles, jams, and curries. It produces latex that is extracted from the green fruit and stem, which contains an enzyme called papain that helps in digestion of proteins.

Plant Characteristics

Papaya is a herbaceous plant of relatively rapid growth and short life (not profitable to cultivate mature plants for longer than 3 years because the fruit yield gets low). It has a hollow, segmented and erect single stem and no branches. It presents a many large, lobed leaves. The plant height can reach up to several meters.

The fruit has a wide variety of forms, its shape and size vary depending on the variety and type of flower.


If you’re growing papaya you must know that papayas come in three sexes: Male, female and hermaphrodite (bisexual). Male papaya trees must be eliminated as they don’t produce fruits. Female papaya trees require male tree for pollination. In orchards and papaya plantations, generally, 1 male tree per 10 female trees is grown. Bisexual papaya trees are self-pollinating and don’t require male trees for pollination. Commercial growers plant them. You will need to plant either female or bisexual papaya tree.

To learn how to identify male or female papaya, tree read this informative discussion on helpful gardener

Our recommendation for you is to buy seeds from quality source so that you know what you’re buying and to get a self-fertile bisexual tree. Most of the hybrid varieties that are coming are either bisexual or female, it is better to buy them. If you’re sowing seeds obtained from the fruits, choose seeds from elongated fruits instead of rounded fruits. Elongated fruits have 66% probability of hermaphrodite (bisexual) seeds and 33% female seeds.

Cross pollination from hand is required for pollination of female papaya trees.

How to Grow Papaya in Pots

Growing papaya in pots is not difficult, considering it is short living small tree. You can grow any papaya variety in pots but it is better to choose a dwarf variety.

how to grow papaya in pot 3

Choosing a container

Choose a large 15-20 gallon size container for growing papaya in pots, also, ensure there are enough drainage holes in the bottom before planting. A pot that is around 18-22 inches in diameter and 12-15 inches deep would be sufficient.

Sow the seeds directly in the pot you wish to use for growing papaya tree as papayas don’t transplant well. All the other growing requirements are given below in the article.

Growing Papaya from Seeds

Seeds must be given treatment before sowing for germination. The first method is to simply wash the seeds to remove gelatinous coating before sowing. Another method is to immerse them in a container full of neutral water for the period of 4 days. Change the water twice in a day. After 2 days of soaking, separate the seeds that are floating on the surface from those that have settled down.

Leave the seeds that are settled down for another day. After this time, the seeds that float up again must be removed. This way only the viable papaya seeds are left. On the last day when changing the water, add fungicides in it.

After this process, keep the seeds on cotton cloth for 2 to 3 days, keeping up the seeds wet. Once the white dot in them can be observed they are ready for sowing.

Proceed to sow the seeds directly on the ground or in the pot or seed tray but remember that papaya trees don’t transplant well and you’ll have a low success rate. Seeds will germinate in 2-3 weeks. Optimum germination temperature is around 70 F (20 C).

Planting Papaya Tree

Once the seedlings germinate sow them directly in a spot as papayas have less success rate when transplanted.

Prepare the ground well before planting. Make a hole in soil that is of the same depth as of rootball of the plant but twice wide. Apply slow release 16-48-0, 18-46-0 or balanced 15-15-15 fertilizer according to the product instruction at the base of the hole, fill it with a thin layer of soil to prevent the plant roots from coming in direct contact with the fertilizer.

The base of each plant should be 1 cm above ground level, to prevent rot at the stem base. After transplanting, a fungicide can be applied to ensure greater protection especially if planting during the rainy season.

How to Grow Papaya Tree in Cold Climate

Papaya is a tropical fruit tree but if you are thinking to plant it in a temperate climate plant it in a large pot and try to overwinter it in a well-protected area, like a greenhouse. Another way is to start the seeds in fall, or in early spring indoors. Once the temperature soars up to plant the seedlings outside. The tree will grow until the frost comes and get killed but there is a possibility that you’ll get some juicy papayas.

Requirements for Growing Papaya Tree


It is also an important factor that determines if the plant will grow or not. Papaya is one of the easiest fruit trees you can grow the optimum temperature for growing papaya ranges between 68 – 86 F (20 to 30 C).

Low temperatures lead to a slow growth of the plant and higher temperatures cause low production. However, papaya tree can bear cold temperature down to 32 F (0 C) for a short period of time. In extremely high tropical temperatures and in heat waves and droughts, flower buds fall and the plant suspends its growth.


The papaya needs plenty of sun due to its high photosynthetic activity. It is impossible to grow it in the lack of sunlight. One more thing you need to keep in mind when choosing a location for growing papaya trees that they are not strongest and must not be planted in a too windy spot.


Papaya trees must be spaced 8-10 feet apart from each other.


The main characteristics of soil for growing a papaya tree are following:

  • Loose and moist.
  • With good drainage.
  • High organic matter content.
  • A pH level around 5.5 to 7 (Neutral).
  • Fertile and deep.

The ideal growing medium must be loamy and have adequate content of organic matter with good moisture retention and efficient drainage. Soil depth is also an important factor for root development. The soil that is more than a meter deep is suitable. Compact soil must be avoided, also, clean the rocks or other debris that is limiting the development of roots till the following depth.

Drainage is crucial in papaya cultivation. The proportion of sand, silt and clay determines the texture and soil structure.

Sandy soils have better drainage than clay. But too sandy soils that are low in organic matter have reduced water retention capacity, which must be avoided.

In clay-rich soils, water movement is slow and this can lead to root rot, slow development of plant and inhibit nutrition uptake. In very alkaline soils (above pH level 8.0) Zinc, iron, and other micro-element deficiency can occur.

Excess water causes yellowing of young leaves, premature fall of flowers and contribute to root rot. Low moisture in the soil can lead to slow growth, accelerated aging and premature leaf and fruit drop.

Good soil preparation practices are key to growing papaya, such as deep plowing and mixing organic matter.


Water is the main contributor of the plant (the plant is composed about 85% of water). In the process of germination, and first few months after planting, papaya needs a lot of water, so at this stage water regularly.

In the dry season, to get the good results in production, watering must be increased again. Keep the soil slightly moist but not wet. As a rule of thumb, water papaya plant deeply when top 1 inch of soil dries out.

Papaya Tree Care

Papaya tree care is easy if you grow it in the warm conditions in full sun.


Mulching papaya tree with organic matter helps in retaining moisture, which is essential.


Papayas are heavy feeders. Apply plenty of manure or compost regularly near the base of your plant.

You can also apply complete fertilizer 15-15-15, 0.1 kg or a similar mixture at intervals of two weeks during the first six months and 0.2 kg thereafter.

Pests and Diseases

Pests that can attack it are fruit flies, mites, black vine weevil, aphids, leafhoppers, and whitefly. In diseases, it suffers from soil fungi, powdery mildew, fruit rot, papaya ringspot virus, and nematodes.

Harvesting Papayas

Papaya fruit set occurs 10-12 months after planting. The fruit is sensitive to sunburn and it must be separated from the tree carefully using plastic gloves or something similar, pick it lightly with a twist or use a short knife, leaving 0.5 cm stalk.

Harvesting should be done according to the following maturity indices:

1. 0% Ripe: Completely green, but well developed.

2. 10-15% Ripe: Color change, one or two yellow stripes with 10-15% yellow surface shell surrounded by a bright green color.

3. 25% Ripe: 25% of the surface of the shell is yellow surrounded by the clear green color.

4. 75% Ripe: 75% of the surface is yellow.

5. 76-100% Ripe: The surface of the shell have yellow to orange color.

Papaya is a fruit that after being cut continues its maturation without stopping. Papayas that are harvested for selling in the market are harvested green with two or three yellow stripes as fruits that reach 75 to 100% maturity are difficult to transport. Fruits must be harvested in the early hours of the day and must not be exposed to the sun.




II.Dear Farmers

In this modern era farming is not less important than business and jobs, you just need to make a right selection of crop, hard work and proper guidance. By doing so you can make more profit than any other business or job.

With this growing scenario of modernization agriculture becomes more profitable than any other business thanks to professional farming and advance technology which helps farmers to reduce the time involved in complete production of the crops which is also have good profit margin as compared to any other crops.

You can also earn more profit through farming of 786 taiwan redlady hybrid papaya. In the several states of India namely Andhra Pradesh, Tamilnadu, Bihar, Asam, Maharastra, Gujrat, Uttarpradesh, Madhyaprdesh, Karnataka the pie of this crop increases. Thus, by cultivating this crop with the help of scientific methods and technology we can make a good profit of ourselves and for the country.

Tirupati Greenhouse Nursery, Sirlay (MadhyPradesh) has given a new identity to modern papaya crop in the whole of the Nimar Region. With your appreciative support and trust, the plant produced by us is traded in all over Rajsthan, Maharastra, Uttarprdesh, Chhatishgarh and rest of india, besides Madhya Pradesh.

We are cultivating papaya since last 16 years and accumulates a quite different experience in it, which we promise to share with each and every individuals who keeps interest in this crop.

With the drastic change in the field of agriculture the new techniques of papaya cultivation has been developed. This techniques includes mulching, and dripping. For the complete information and guidelines of this techniques please feel free to contact us.

Some frequently asked questions regarding to 786 Taiwan Papaya farming and their answers are mentioned below.

Why Should we do farming of 786 Taiwan Papaya ?

1. By farming of this crop we can earn more profit than any other crop.
2. The fruit of the Papaya do no rancid up to 15 days after complete ripe. That in tern proves helpful in export of this fruits to any other state or country.
3. Papaya plant takes only 4.5 months to give fruits and 8 months to pluck the fruit from the plant.
4. An average production of this crop is 40 to 60 kilograms per plant.
5. It is very delicious in test and beneficial for health.

When should papaya farming must do?

The best time for papaya farming is in between februry to May in Madhay Pradesh and Rajsthan, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, North-Middle India region. In this period the production of this crop is better than any other months of the years.

How to do farming of 786 Taiwan Papaya?

1. For the cultivation of Papaya crop the soil of the field must be very fertile. The land where rain water accumulates is not fruitful for this crop.
2. Do not grow any other crop with papaya and do not grow papaya with any other crop.
3. Do not grow new papaya crop nearby old once.
4. The distance between each papaya plant must be 7×6 or 7×7 feet.
Row to Row distance – 7 Feet
Plant to plant distance – 6 or 7 feet
5. There must be 1000 – 1100 papaya plants per acre.
6. Before the cultivation of this crop the farm must be well equipped with gobar fertilizers i.e. 3 to 5 trolly of the tractor per acre.
7. Also aid 3 to 5 bags of super fertilizer in the field.
8. Keep the plants before 3 to 4 days before actual farming in order to acclimatize the plants in the climate of your region.
9. Do not keep plants in closed room or godown. Instead keep them on the shadow of tree where proper trespassing of air occurred.
10. Farm the plants in field after noon time.
11. Always keep the pump used in spray for this crop separate from other crops.
12. Do not use pesticides or insecticides in papaya plants without consult with us.
13. You can put the papaya crop in between makka crop in order to save the plants from the sun.
14. Once the papaya plants grow to a minimum height cut out the makka crop from the field.
15. Irrigation of the plants must be in accordance with need. It requires more irrigation in summer.
16. Gather the surrounding soil to the plant before rainy days.
17. Cut out the unshaped fruits from the plant before they get at most 250kg/fruit.
18. After first rain paint the plants with copper sulphate or lime below the fruits height.

Fertilizers after 1 month from the farming. (Basis: Per Acre) [Note: Encirle the fertizer around the plant in 1-1.25 ft diameter.]

1. Calcium Nitrate – 15 KG.
2. Zinc Sulphate – 15 KG.
3. Humic Acid (Granular) – 5 KG.
4. Potash – 50 KG.

Fertilizers after 2 Months from the farming [Note: 1-1.5 ft vertically front and back from the plant]

1. DAP – 75 KG.
2. Potash – 75 KG.

Fertilizers after 4 Months from the farming [Note: 1-1.5 ft vertically front and back from the plant]

1. DAP – 75 KG.
2. Micro Nutrient – 10 KG.
3. Potash – 75 KG.
4. Ammonium Sulphate – 30 KG.
5. Magnesium Sulphate – 30 KG.

The above information is completely based on our 16 years experience. By following this guidelines you can grow the papaya crop with most of the productivity and can prevent the crop from viruses and insects.
The above information is for 6 months, more information can be provided after complete inspection of the field.
The above information is based on the assumptions of weather and climatically conditions, for the information regarding to this subject we welcomes you to Tirupati Greenhouse Nursery.





III.How To Grow Papaya Fruit All Year Round

I love growing papaya. They are easy to grow (once you know how to!), they are quick to fruit and they fruit all year round. I can use them both ripe or green, I can feed them to my chickens, and they attract lots of wild birds into my garden.

Papayas are fast growing shade trees, and they look really good, too.

Growing Papaya

Growing papaya from seed is the easiest and most successful way to get started.And of course it’s also the cheapest. You can grow papayas using seed from shop bought papayas.

However, the papaya can be a finicky plant… Papayas are easy to grow, but not necessarily so easy to keep alive and get good fruit from.

Below I tell you how you can easily grow papaya from seed, and how you can ensure a good supply of fruit all year round.

Growing Papaya

Papaya originated in the lowland tropics of South America, but today you find papayas growing everywhere in the tropics and subtropics. It often grows wild, and every tropical food garden has several papaya trees.

To grow good papayas you need a frost free climate, lots of sunlight, lots of water and very good soil.

If you can supply all of the above you can pretty much stick some papaya seeds in the ground at any time of the year, and six to ten months later they will start fruiting.

Ok, admittedly this sounds easier than it is for most beginner gardeners. There are some hurdles and traps to watch out for when growing papayas. But if you are aware of the possible problems then there is no reason why your first attempt at growing papayas shouldn’t be a smashing success. Let’s look at the details…

What Do Papayas Look Like?

Here are some pictures of papayas, for those who have never seen papaya plants.

Crown Of A PapayaYoung Papaya Plant.Mature Papaya Tree.

Papayas are fast growing, single stem plants. The trunk is soft and does not have a bark, and papayas don’t have branches.

The leaves are huge and don’t last long. Usually you have a tall trunk with a crown of leaves at the top of it. The overall appearance is a bit like a palm tree.

If a papaya loses the growing tip or is cut back it can develop multiple trunks.

The fruit grows on the trunk, and since papayas continue to grow up and up the fruit is harder and harder to get to as the papaya plant gets older…

How To Grow Papaya From Seed

Growing Papaya Seeds

You can use any shop bought papaya for seeds, but you get the best results if you use seeds from locally grown papaya fruit.

Just cut the papaya in half, scrape out the seeds, and clean and dry them. (Actually, I never bother cleaning them…)

You will end up with enough seeds to grow a papaya plantation…

Select a sunny and sheltered place in your garden. That’s right, in your garden. Don’t start them in pots!

Papayas don’t transplant well. Anything that disturbs the roots of papayas really sets them back. They just hate it. The most fool proof way to grow papayas is to simply plant them where they are to live.

Papaya trees are very, very hungry. That means they need very good soil, rich in organic matter and nutrients.

If you don’t have fabulous soil, make some. Dig a hole half a meter across and fill it with a mix of good compost and soil. Actually, make at least two or three such planting beds in different locations.

Now sprinkle on some of your seeds. A couple of dozen per bed is a good amount. I usually use even more… Cover the seeds lightly with more compost, and then mulch the patch well. The seeds usually take about a couple of weeks to germinate, and may take longer.

Soon you will notice that your seedlings are very different in size and vigor. That’s why we planted so many. Start culling the weaker ones. Pull them out while still small, or cut bigger ones down to the ground. Only keep the very best.

At this stage you should keep about half a dozen plants. Papaya plants can be male, female, or bisexual, and you want to make sure that you have some females or bisexual plants amongst your seedlings. The male papayas don’t bear fruit.

Male Papaya FlowersFemale Papaya Plant

Papayas start flowering when they are about one metre tall. The males flower first. Male flowers have long, thin stalks with several small blooms. Female flowers are usually single blooms, bigger, and very close to the trunk. See the papaya pictures above.

Cull most of the male plants. You only need one male for every ten to fifteen female plants to ensure good pollination.

And that’s it. You should end up with one very strong and healthy female plant per bed. (And a male plant somewhere…) If the weather is warm enough, and if you are growing your papayas in full sun and in good soil, then you could be picking the first ripe fruit within 10 months.

How much water?

Papayas have large soft leaves. They evaporate a lot of water in warm weather, so they need a lot of water. But unfortunately papayas are very susceptible to root rot, especially in cool weather. Overwatering is the most common reason for problems when growing papayas.

It depends on the temperature and on the overall health and vigor of the plant. A healthier plant will cope better, but in general you should be careful not to overwater during periods of cool weather.

How much plant food?

As much as you can spare. Papayas need a lot of fertilizing. They are particularly greedy for nitrogen. Fertilize them regularly. You can use a complete fertilizer, or something like chicken manure. Papayas handle strong or fresh manures fairly well. You should also be generous with compost, and just keep piling on the mulch as the plants grow bigger.

How much sun?

As much as possible. It’s ok if the leaves wilt a little bit in hot weather. Papayas love heat and sunlight. You can get them to grow in partial shade, but you just end up with a spindly, sickly tree, and if you ever get any fruit it will be several metres up in the air and taste insipid.

When do papayas fruit and how much?

Papayas fruit all year round, as long as the weather is warm enough. Keep them happy and they will keep fruiting. (If the temperatures drop too much they stop flowering. They will flower again as it warms up.)

Young papayas are the most productive. The older a papaya plant gets, the weaker it becomes. It will produce less and smaller fruit, and it may get problems with diseases. Also, because the plants keep growing taller it gets harder to reach the fruit.

I think it’s best to just keep planting more. Put in another patch every few months. That way you always have some healthy and productive plants around, and you don’t need a ladder to pick the fruit.

How long do papayas live?

That can vary greatly, but most papaya plants are short lived. As they get older they get more susceptible to all kinds of diseases. Most of mine die some time in their second or third year. We get big storms here and usually my papayas just blow over once they get too tall.

But I also have some trees that seem indestructible. Rather than blowing over they snap off, and grow multiple new trunks. I once saw a photo of a forty year old papaya!

Common Problems When Growing Papayas

I already addressed the most common problem: root rot due to overwatering. If you get cool weather keep you papaya plants dry.

If you live in an area that gets torrential tropical rains, like I do, then there is not much you can do about it. Every wet season I lose many of my mature papaya plants. It’s not a problem for me, since I regularly start new plants. The young ones survive ok, and I always have some papayas fruiting somewhere.

Strong winds are another common cause of papaya disaster. Papaya plants have a very shallow root system, they get very top heavy as they grow older, and they blow over easily. Again, the solution is to replant in time.

Then there are birds, fruit bats, possums… Everybody loves papayas. The only solution here is to pick the fruit as soon as it starts to change colour. It will ripen ok on the kitchen bench.

I don’t mind sharing my papaya crop anyway. I pick what I can reach and I don’t worry about the fruit that’s higher up. The birds can have the rest until the plant falls over and dies.

That is unless I get an exceptionally productive or nice flavoured papaya. I’m too lazy to climb ladders to pick papayas, so if a tree gets too tall I just cut it down, about two feet of the ground. Sometimes it kills them, but sometimes they grow back with several trunks. I get more fruit and it grows where I can reach it.

The best time to cut a papaya back is during dry weather. The trunk is hollow. If it fills with water it will rot. You can protect it by covering it with an upside down plastic pot or or a bag. Hot, humid weather can encourage rot.

Papayas get a whole slew of viruses and diseases, transmitted by sucking insects. Those problems are greatest during times when the plants are stressed already, for example because they have wet feet.

I don’t think it’s worth worrying about diseases, or trying to treat them. Just plant more.

Young, vigorous papayas are least affected by insects or diseases. Just keep planting lots of them, and always keep just the best. The planting method outlined above, and regular replanting, are the best way to ensure a regular supply of papaya.

Save your own seeds from your healthiest and tastiest plants, and over time you will breed the perfect papaya for your garden.

Growing Papaya In Cooler Climates

If you get at least long hot summers you could grow papaya just as an ornamental plant. In this case you would start them in a pot indoors to gain extra time. Plant them out against a sun facing wall and enjoy the tropical look. However, you won’t be able to keep your papaya alive long enough to get fruit.

The only other option is growing papaya in a huge pot, and to keep the pot in a heated greenhouse in winter. Still, I doubt you’d get reasonable fruit of it. I would grow papaya as an annual decorative plant.



Share Button

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.