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CARICA papaya 'Solo'

Image of Carica papaya 'Solo'

Family

Caricaceae

Botanical Name

CARICA papaya 'Solo'

Plant Common Name

Papaya, Solo Papaya

General Description

Solo papaya is a small, short-lived self-fertile tropical tree bearing large melon-shaped fruits directly on its trunk. It was a cultivar produced in the early 20th century in Barbados and popularized in the trade via growers in Hawaii. 'Solo' fruit is of excellent quality with a red orange flesh. All seeds produce either a self-fertile bisexual plant or a female plant. The large scalloped, seven-lobed leaves top the hollow trunk. The fruit is edible and enzymes from the plant are used as meat tenderizer. Ordinarily you need both male and female plants for fruit production, however cultivar 'Solo' has both gender flowers on the same plant.

Papaya needs a full sun to partial sun exposure, it appreciates heat. In the warm months, ensure it has plenty of water and fertilizer. Plan on only a couple seasons of growth and worthwhile production per plant. Have saplings or seeds germinating on a staggered schedule to allow for continual renewal of a grove for nice fruit production.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 10

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    9 - 12

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 21, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Fruit

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    15'-25' / 4.6m - 7.6m (20)

  • Width

    3'-8' / 0.9m - 2.4m (6)

  • Bloom Time

    Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Mexico, Caribbean, Central America

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Very Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Ivory

  • Fruit Color

    Green, Orange, Light Yellow

  • Fruit Color Modifier

    Spotted/Mottled

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green

  • Bark Color

    Sienna

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    Yes

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Bold

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Container, Edible, Feature Plant, Fruit / Fruit Tree, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No