What’s that smell?

If it weren’t pawpaw (Asimina triloba, family Anonaceae) season, I’d blame the stench on Facebook. Hah.

IMG_0276Don’t confused this North American native plant with what Australians call “pawpaws” which are actually papayas (Carica papaya). The Asimina triloba is a true pawpaw related to the cherimoya (Annona cherimola).


24 thoughts on “What’s that smell?

  1. My goodness…pawpaws! My grandmother used to always sing a song about pawpaws while she was going about her ‘chores’, and my mother, who grew up eating pawpaws, would often reminisce about the fun of finding them in the woods that surrounded her home. It is so nice to see that they are still enjoyed. Are the pawpaws in the photo a cultivated variety or wild? Thank you for sharing the photo, I will probably be humming that song for the rest of the day. ;D

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  2. You just scoop out the flesh to eat, much like a kiwi. Thai salads probably use green papayas (which, I assume, are true papayas, but I don’t know since I’ve only had it at a friend’s house and we’ve not made it ourselves).

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  3. Not being from this area (I grew up on the West Coast where pawpaws are not found), I don’t know the pawpaw song though some friends have mentioned it to me. πŸ™‚ As far as I know, there are no cultivated varieties. These grow wild on our property. Glad I could bring back some old memories for you!

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  4. LOL! I believe they don’t occur as far west as where you are. I think their range is from about Indiana to the east coast (and I think no farther south than about Kentucky). Because pawpaws tend to be fairly perishable, they’re not exported, so they’re hard to find outside of their range. Even in areas where they grow wild, you have to fight the wildlife (squirrels, raccoons, etc) for them!

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  5. Indeed you did bring back memories…the song was stuck in my head. ;D But here is a site for a fellow, a plant scientist who has been cultivating and breeding pawpaws for over three decades. Sorry, I don’t know how to link it: http://www.petersonpawpaws.com
    Which is why I wondered if yours were wild or not. Have fun with the pawpaws…(I like that name, so cute). πŸ˜€

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  6. You know, I was talking to hubby this morning about this and he said he had, indeed, bought 2 cultivated species from the Raintree catalog…just shows that I don’t talk to my husband. LOL!! But, yeah, you’re right: there’re definitely cultivated varieties, though, it’s not like they’re that far from the wild types since they’ve not been in cultivation for centuries like apples or anything. πŸ˜€ Thanks for the link!

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  7. They do grow in Ohio…it’s kind of the whole north eastern part of the U.S. from around Indiana (and as far down as KY) to the east coast. πŸ™‚ I hope you’ll find one to try. Some people love it; some hate it. They taste nothing like papayas because they’re not related at all (it’s just that Australians call papayas “pawpaw”). πŸ™‚


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