Monday, January 10, 2011

Papaya: selecting the strongest plant

I dont do this with most seeds, I mean, tossing them onto designated spot, and let nature nurture them for germination. Papayas prepare hundreds of seeds, throwing a handful onto the spot isn't much really. Rain and sunshine eventually bring life to these seeds. Now, there are far too many of them, putting emotion and attachment aside, the strongest and the best has to be the winner.... the rest has to go. In their real world, the same thing will happen, only one will grow within a foot square, the rest will stay low, succumb to eventual death. Now I am guilty of meddling with their way of natural selection.

During childhood days, many grew papaya. Two main variety then, the round and the long one. The parent papaya was a reasonably long type. A blog I read treat papaya well, and mentioned  three main types;  betik eksotika 1, betik eksoika 2 and betik sekaki. I dont know what's the variety I am growing.... It wont be far too long to really pinpoint their actual variety.... just wait.

Earlier post on papaya:


  1. This is a tricky plant for me to grow. It does grow for me from seed, but then our frost happens and the plant is gone! This year I am going to put it in a pot and bring it inside to protect from frost. They love the heat and a bit of sun...but not direct. The dried fruit is the best.

  2. How wonderful to grow Papaya! I always dislike having to "thin" seedlings down to the one I think will survive! I do it but I always feel quite bad for the ones I pull or trim away and add to the compost heap.

  3. rohrerbot
    Papaya is a true tropical plant.. I suppose gardeners in a four season regions have to play around with weather change.

    Even if we dont thin them, they will thin out among themselves allowing the fittest to continue, and the rest go to heaven early.

  4. Guilty? What else can we do but to get rid of some seedlings. They grow so readily everywhere.

  5. Hi Bangchik,
    My mum taught me how to differentiate a male and a female papaya tree when they are still baby plants. If the plant has a single root (with only little branches) then that is probably a male plant and one with a lot of branches is a female plant (don't know how about a bisex one though). I planted 3 according to what she told me, but will only know how true the statement is few months later.

  6. But you will realize only later which are the males and the females, and that might be a bit late when they are already big plants. I am curious about Milka's comment below, there might be some wisdom in there. Old traditions might be a big resource. Hmmm!

  7. Good luck in getting all your papaya trees - hope you manage to select all the female ones.

  8. One
    You are right.... too many, so some has to go.

    But our plants already rooted, it will not be easy to peep at the roots.

    I choose the healthiest to stay, hoping it will bear fruits. I hope not all will be males..

    James Missier
    I read some where that there are more females than males. The probability of getting females should be encouraging..

    ~bangchik and kakdah


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