Carica candamarcensis Hook.f.
Carica cestriflora (A.DC.) Solms
Carica cundinamarcensis Linden
Carica pubescens Lenné & K.Koch
Vasconcellea cestriflora A.DC.
Vasconcellea cundinamarcensis V.M.Badillo
Common Name: Mountain Papaya
Mountain papaya is an evergreen small tree growing up to 10 metres tall[
The edible fruit is gathered from the wild for local use, often being sold in local markets. It is often grown in gardens within its native range, and is also occasionally cultivated commercially in Chile, USA (Florida, Hawaii), E Africa, Sri Lanka, Indonesia (Java, Bali) and New Zealand[
S. American Highlands - Panama, south along the Andes to Bolivia.
Found at elevations from 1,500 - 3,000 metres[
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Wild
A plant of higher elevations up to 3,000 metres, with well-distributed rainfall in the tropics[
], it can be grown at lower elevations and also in the subtropics and warm, essentially frost-free temperate areas[
]. It grows best in areas where the mean annual rainfall is 1,000 - 1,700mm, but tolerates a range of 500 - 2,800mm[
]. It prefers a mean minimum temperature of 17°c and a maximum of 22°c, but can tolerate a range from 10 - 28°c[
]. Plants can tolerate occasional short-lived frosts to about -3°c when dormant, but only -1°c when coming into growth[
Requires a fertile, well-drained soil and a sunny but sheltered position[
]. Established plants can tolerate prolonged droughts[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 6 - 7, but can tolerate 4.5 - 8.4[
Plants can start producing fruit in just 2 years from seed[
A single tree can produce 50 - 60 fruits a year[
The fruit of this species has potential commercial use in the warm temperate zone[
This species can be monoecious or dioecious. Dioecious forms will need both male and female forms to be grown if fruit and seed are required[
Fruit - raw or cooked[
]. Seldom eaten raw, it is more commonly used in preserves or candied[
]. The sourish pulp of the ripe fruit can be eaten fresh, but it is usually stewed and sweetened as dessert or for preparing juices or jams[
]. The fruit is recommended for dyspeptics[
]. The fruit is rich in papain[
]. The fruit is from 6 - 20cm long[
Seed - sow in containers shaded from direct light. It germinates best at a temperature around 24 - 30c[
]. Germinates in 2 - 6 weeks[
]. Transfer the containers to a sunny position when plants are about 2 weeks old, planting out into permanent positions when the plants are large enough.
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