Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Carica papaya

L., Sp. Pl. 1466. 1753

Papaya

Unbranched tree, mostly to 6 m tall, essentially glabrous, dioecious or rarely polygamous or monoecious. Leaves in a dense terminal crown; petioles to 70 cm long; blades ovate, deeply 5-9-lobed, cordate at base, the lobes broadly pinnatifid when mature, 20-40 cm long, obscurely acumi­nate; palmate veins at base 7-9. Staminate inflorescences axillary; flowers many, short-pedicellate, ca 2 cm long; sepals 5, ca 1 mm long, green; corolla cream-yellow, the tube slender, the limb 5-lobed, the lobes oblong; stamens in 2 series, ca 2.5 mm long. Pistillate inflores­cences of 1-3 flowers on pedicels to 2.5 cm long; calyx lobes ca 1 mm long, green; corolla 5-lobed to base, 5-7 cm long, cream-yellow; style to 1 cm long; stigmas 5, usually with 1 or 2 short branches. Fruits maturing within crown of leaves; berries variable. Croat 5907.

Cultivated at the Laboratory Clearing. Flowers sporad­ically year-round.

Sex changes in the flowers are reported under different ecological conditions (Percival, 1965).

Native to the American tropics; now widespread in cultivation. In Panama, known from tropical moist forest in the Canal Zone, Bocas del Toro, Veraguas, Panama, and Darién, from premontane moist forest in the Canal Zone, from premontane wet forest in Panama (Chimán), and from tropical wet forest in Colon (Portobelo).

Photos from STRI Digital Archive

  • Carica papaya
  • Carica papaya
  • Carica papaya Flower
  • Carica papaya Fruit
  • Carica papaya Flower Fruit Leaf
  • Papaya (Carica papaya)
  • Papaya (Carica papaya)
  • Harvesting Papaya
  • Papaya (Carica papaya)
  • Papaya (Carica papaya)