Today you’ll be learning how to grow papaya from seed. Papayas are an amazing super food with the capabilities to heal as they contain flavonoids, vitamin C, vitamin B, as well as fiber. Growing papaya from seed is fairly easy as long as it has the right climate and enough spacing. Although a papaya tree can take a little while to fruit, it is well worth it as it will keep producing its tropical fruit!

papayas in tree

Before growing your papaya tree, keep in mind that female and male flowers do not grow on the same tree, so you must have female and male trees in the garden.

Climate:

Papaya trees grow in warm climates, but can also grow in colder climates as long as frost does not reach them and they are well protected from strong winds.

Harvesting:

Depending on the climate, a papaya tree will start to bear fruit withing 6-11 months. It will take about 6 months in a tropical region, or up to 11 months for a more temperate region. Fruits will be ready when the outside turns yellow and it will ripen once it is picked off.

Growing Papaya From Seed:

papaya tree

  1. Wash the seeds from a papaya fruit.
  2. Dry the seeds in a shady place.
  3. Store the seeds in a tightly closed container until December.
  4. Plant the seeds in December and add 5 seeds to each hole.
  5. Plant each 5 seeds 1.5 meters from each plant and 3-4 meters between rows.
  6. Do not add any compost just yet.
  7. Keep the soil moist.
  8. You will be able to tell which trees are female and which are male once they start to flower. This is why you should always have more than one tree per hole.

Female Flowers:

  • Female flowers will be bigger.
  • Closer to the branch than male flowers.

Male Flowers:

  • Male flowers will be very small.
  • There will be  a lot of flowers which will grow on long stems.
  • Since only female trees give fruit, they will need male trees to pollinate them. Make sure you have 1 male tree for every 10 female trees.

Watering Papaya:

  • Papaya trees do not need a lot of water.
  • In the dry season, water it once every 2 weeks.

Fertilization:

  • Add 1 bucketful of compost or manure in September
  • Add another bucketful of compost of manure in November
  • Add another in January
  • Finally, sprinkle a handful of manure around the tree each from from September to March.

Pruning:

Papaya trees do not need much pruning, but you can prune from the top so the tree doesn’t grow too tall.

Happy Planting!

grow papaya from seed