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papaya in melbourne

    10 responses

Indira starts with ...
Hi, What would be the best variety of Fruiting Papaya to grow in Melbourne.
Thank You
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Indira
Forest Hill
31st October 2017 1:11pm
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Manfred says...
How big is your heated greenhouse?

Without one of those you won't get any papayas.
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Manfred
Tully
1st November 2017 8:18pm
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Fruitylicious1 says...
The best fruiting papaya for Melbourne is babaco I have tried it myself in Melbourne and they thrived. The tropical papayas are harder to maintain in Melbourne. If you don't have a greenhouse plant them in big pots so you can bring them to your garage or house for shelter. Without protection and proper micro climate they will surely perish during winter and early spring. Your best bet is the dwarf variety so can carry and protect them easily. It's hard work though but if you are determined to have a go why not.
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Fruitylicious1
TAMWORTH,2340,NSW
3rd November 2017 10:23am
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Layby2k says...
Will a Red Papaya grow in Melbourne without a greenhouse. I don't care if it produces fruit or not, just want it for the foliage.
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Layby2k
Lalor
17th February 2019 12:18pm
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Barnacle says...
Yes, you can grow red papaya tree in Melbourne metropolitan suburbs (warm enough to not get frost) on the ground if you cover it with clear plastic during winter and early spring so it doesn't get wet and cold and rot from the cold rain water.

The leaves always died back in winter and early Spring (1st photo) before the tree recovers in mid-December to grow again.

Ideally there are stone pavers surrounding the base of the tree (if not next to a wall facing the sun) so to heat the ground during the minimal sunshine we get during winter.

The red papaya tree won't carry fruit to maturity but it will flower.

Photos of my tree in autumn (2nd photo) reaching the height of gutter, taken from climbing up the roof.

Photos 3 and 4 also of another papaya tree (tree on the right of both photos), before it got chopped in Melbourne. This tree was large and old enough to not be covered in winter.
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Barnacle
Melbourne
21st January 2020 6:49pm
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Original Post was last edited: 22nd January 2020 5:15pm
Barnacle says...
Loading photos again, as they got removed on edit! :)

Cover the red papaya when it is small in winter to mid-spring. As long as the roots don;t get wet from the cold winter rain, it should not rot. Good luck, as the foliage is lovely.

If not able to establish one, get the yellow paw paw, as it is more cold resistant than red papaya. If that still no good, get the Babaco, the foilage is not as lush green, being a darker and less expansive, but it is a type of mountain papaya hybrid and much more cold resistant, so does well in Melbourne.
Pictures - Click to enlarge

Picture: 1

Picture: 2

Picture: 3

Picture: 4
  
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Barnacle
Melbourne
22nd January 2020 9:07am
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Markmelb says...
Ive had Red Papaya Fruit in Melbourne by growing in a pot and bringing inside and not watering during winter - Root Rot and stem dieback is the biggest winter issue with them - mine succumbed during second winter - Broad leaf didnt get thru first winter - use a very well draining potting mix with alot like 50% course perlite i feel if i tried again - the red was self fertile.
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
22nd January 2020 9:11am
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Fruitylicious1 says...
Hi Mark

I am also tempted to grow tropical papaya here in Melbourne but I went against my desire because I don't have a heated greenhouse to cuddle it during winter or maybe a grow light setup inside my garage or shed during the cooler months. Maybe in the future when I'm up to the challenging task.
Happy gardening 😎
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Fruitylicious1
TAMWORTH,2340,NSW
23rd January 2020 10:08am
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Markmelb says...
Fruity - i put the pics on My Edibles page Its not that actual Variety - just a plant i got from Bunnings - i dont advocate the cuddling of plants :)
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
23rd January 2020 7:51pm
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Original Post was last edited: 23rd January 2020 7:54pm
Barnacle 1 says...
Update from when I last posted on 22 Jan 2020.

My Carica papaya tree in September is always looking very miserable at this time of the year in Melbourne. Second picture shows the tree in May 2020, as it is about to enter winter.

It is a hermaphrodite tree with pentandria fruits. Not sure if the fruits will drop or able to mature. They stop growing back in May/June in Melbourne winter, barely hanging on given the status of the tree (see below).

Having (barely) survived winter in Melbourne, the tree is hanging on, recovering in a dormant mode, yet to generate any new leaves or growth.

All leaves on the tree shown in this photo were already present before we enter winter (old growth).

Hopefully new growth will start late October/November when the tree recovers more.

As said, growing Carica papaya is hard in Melbourne. It is a precious gift this tree gives me, to see it live here in Melbourne.
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Picture: 1

Picture: 2
 
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Barnacle 1
Melbourne 3000 VIC Australia
18th September 2020 4:39pm
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Barnacle 1 says...
Update from 18 Sept's post

Melbourne has been rather cold this Spring and Summer, with a 12 degree Celsius (C) day in October, 13C in November, 15C in December and Xmas day today at 20C (coldest since 2007).

My papaya tree has suffered root rot, trunk rot, attacks from slugs, caterpillars and earwigs eating the leaves and fruits.

The tree is now gingerly pushing out new (smallish) leaves, still on gradual recovery mode.

All the immature fruits on the tree carried over from winter have dropped bar one. Largest fruit was 8cm, and had holes in it with two earwicks living inside. All the fruits are seedless.

The tree is also pushing out tiny side shoot buds.

Wishing everyone safe and Merry Christmas and a Happy and much better New Year!
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Picture: 1

Picture: 2

Picture: 3
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Barnacle 1
Melbourne 3000 VIC Australia
25th December 2020 9:53pm
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