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Asimina triloba (Pawpaw)

Pawpaw, Papaw, Custard Apple, False Banana, Indian Banana, Wild Banana

Asimina triloba, Pawpaw, Papaw, custard Apple, False Banana
Asimina triloba, Pawpaw, Papaw, custard Apple, False Banana

Noted for its great foliage effect, Asimina triloba (Pawpaw) is a large, multi-stemmed shrub or small tree with large, slightly drooping, oval, rich green leaves, 6-12 in. long (15-30 cm), turning brilliant yellow to golden hues in fall. Cup-shaped, purple flowers, up to 2 in. across (5 cm), appear in spring before the leaves, and are followed by egg-shaped, edible, greenish yellow fruit, 5 in. long (12 cm), which mature to black and have a slight banana-like taste. The fruits are usually eaten raw or used in ice creams or pies. They attract wildlife and may persist on the tree for weeks, resembling Christmas ornaments. This is a good understory tree with no serious disease or insect problems.

  • Grows up to 15-30 ft. tall and wide (4-9 m). Will sucker to form colonies or thickets.
  • A full sun to part shade lover, Pawpaw is easily grown in acid or neutral, medium to wet, well-drained soils. Needs long, hot summers to become a tree and produce fruit, otherwise can be grown as a multi-stemmed shrub.
  • Generally pest and disease free.
  • A fine choice for city gardens, Mediterranean gardens, wall side borders, rain gardens and damp areas along ponds or streams.
  • No routine pruning necessary. Remove diseased, damaged, congested or crossing shoots.
  • Propagate by seed sown in autumn, or by layering in autumn, or root cuttings in winter.
  • Native to southeastern United States.

Requirements

Hardiness 5 - 9
Heat Zones 6 - 8
Plant Type Fruits, Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Annonaceae
Common names Wild Banana, Papaw, Pawpaw, Custard Apple
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 15' - 30'
(4.6m - 9.1m)
Spread 15' - 30'
(4.6m - 9.1m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Loam
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Midwest, Southeast, Southwest, Northeast, Missouri, Ohio, Wisconsin, Kansas, Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Nebraska, Michigan, Florida, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, West Virginia, South Carolina, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, Oklahoma
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Ponds And Streams, Rain Gardens, Wall-Side Borders
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden, City and Courtyard
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Recommended Companion Plants

Lyonia lucida (Fetter Bush)
Morella cerifera (Southern Wax Myrtle)
Vaccinium myrsinites (Evergreen Blueberry)
Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Weed)
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 5 - 9
Heat Zones 6 - 8
Plant Type Fruits, Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Annonaceae
Common names Wild Banana, Papaw, Pawpaw, Custard Apple
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 15' - 30'
(4.6m - 9.1m)
Spread 15' - 30'
(4.6m - 9.1m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Loam
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Midwest, Southeast, Southwest, Northeast, Missouri, Ohio, Wisconsin, Kansas, Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Nebraska, Michigan, Florida, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, West Virginia, South Carolina, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, Oklahoma
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Ponds And Streams, Rain Gardens, Wall-Side Borders
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden, City and Courtyard
How Many Plants
Do I Need?

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