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Author Topic: Can I prune my papaya?  (Read 1004 times)

Daintree

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Can I prune my papaya?
« on: December 22, 2016, 06:52:05 PM »
So, I am not sure what to do now that my papaya plant has hit the ceiling of the greenhouse.  Can I cut it back?  If so, do I do it above the "leaf line", leaving a few leaves on it, or can I cut it below that?  Do I need to seal the top of the stem with anything?

Thanks!
Carolyn

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2016, 07:00:24 PM »
You can cut the papaya back (pretty far actually). It will respond by branching out. The only problem is that they tend to produce multiple thinner branches which are not perpendicular to the ground and aren't as sturdy as the central trunk. So, you may need to stake them when they get loaded with fruit.
Jeff  :-)

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2016, 07:39:28 PM »
What Jeff said.

The good news is there wont be any wind to deal with in the greenhouse.
-Josh

fyliu

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2016, 08:31:38 PM »
I agree with the above as well. Don't worry about it not having any leaves. Think plumeria pruning. Avoid too much wetness but you already know that.

greenman62

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2016, 07:19:24 AM »
i always prune mine when young
they will send out several branches, but you can prune those as well
leaving 1 or maybe 2.
it will also try to produce twice as many fruit (more branches = more fruit)
with twice the growing tips, but i cull %30 or so of the flowers

the plant gets a bit wider, since you have leaves growing out from more than 1 spot
and sometimes at different levels (height), which can increase the ability to harvest the sun
but you also get leaves running into each other or not being able to grow out properly.
so there are pluses and minuses...
 but i tip them  pretty often to control height.




they can get "unruly" if you tip them too much
and dont prune off some of the other leaders...


shinzo

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2016, 08:44:26 AM »
i read somewhere that papaya can change sex from male to female after severe pruning, is that correct? and if so what is the case for a female tree? can it become hermaphrodite or male?

greenman62

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2016, 11:21:01 AM »
My  understanding is it will only go from male to female (or maybe to herm?)
but not TO a male.
supposedly the trigger is stress.
some have put a nail in the trunk to trigger it.
others have noticed it after a big change in  moisture, or temperature.
i had a male once, and i cut the top off, and it turned into a herm.
at least partly... it was still producing male flowers too
i cant be sure my topping it was the cause, but,
 it certainly started producing some female flowers
directly on the trunk, not on the panicles as a male does..
 (or maybe herm flowers? im not sure)

Daintree

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #7 on: December 25, 2016, 01:29:53 PM »
Thanks everyone!  And Merry Christmas, or Happy Holiday of Your Choice!

Shinzo's comment made me think of something -
How do I tell if my plant is female or hermaphroditic?
It flowered directly on the main trunk and set fruit.  But the fruit only got about two inches long, then dropped.  The fruits did have flesh in them, and a seed cavity.
Does that mean the flowers did not get fertilized because it needs a male, or because I need to hand pollinate, or just that my papaya was not old enough or fed properly enough to sustain the fruit?  I grew it from a tasty Solo seed.

Thanks!

Carolyn

shinzo

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #8 on: December 25, 2016, 03:08:58 PM »
I think you have a female tree, i have one female that forms fruits like yours and then drop them. To be sure you need to check the form of the flowers, here is a pic that should help you :
« Last Edit: December 25, 2016, 03:33:21 PM by shinzo »

Daintree

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #9 on: December 25, 2016, 04:51:02 PM »
Rats!  Yep, it's a female!
So, my choices are - keep this one and also squeeze a male into my greenhouse, or get rid of this one and get a hermaphrodite?
I already have way too many marula and safou, since I am hanging onto all of them until they bloom so I can sort out the males from the females.

For Christmas, I would like a "home plant-sex-identification kit"!  Can someone please invent one??????

Carolyn

Mike T

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #10 on: December 26, 2016, 04:58:02 PM »
Papaya cannot change gender even after pruning. Chopping off the main trunk is pretty standard here once they get too tall. Just cut cleanly through slightly off horizontal to allow water to run off and put a pot over it to minimise wetness. I cut 15 feet plants off at 5 feet.The resulting new sprouting tops can be very fruiting but not as strong as the former top. They can snap off if overloaded with fruit or too horizontal.

Viking Guy

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2016, 03:11:58 AM »
One of the most effective and interesting pruning trainings I have seen for Papaya was a "candlestick" style a guy was using.

Basically kept prunings around 24".  Kept two branchings.  After they grew, he would prune them each down to 24" the same way and collect more branches on them and train accordingly.  Ended up being a group of giant candlestick papayas.  I am going to try it one day myself and see what becomes of it.  He said the 2 foot spacings prevented the general need for supporting the tree once pruned.  There was one with damage, but he said it was due to a severe storm.  Most of all, the "trees" looked quite unique.
-Adam

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2016, 04:40:26 AM »
I grow mine in the hothouse for all year round fruit too. If they get too tall I marcot mine and replant the top for lower setting fruit.

Delvi83

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2016, 06:39:19 AM »
Is the Gender only genetically determined or environment can act too?

For example the sex of Reptile is determinted by temperature of egg's incubation....

The % of gender is the sami in all part of the world? In colder climate is the same as in tropical climate?

Mike T

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2016, 08:28:45 AM »
Sex changes with age are common in fish and sex changes in some reef species that are territorial is pretty common. Sex determination in reptiles especially crocodilians and turtles is also pretty common.Sex changing papayas is something different.

Delvi83

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #15 on: December 27, 2016, 12:17:24 PM »
Yes, it was just an example to better understand what i said.

It could not be impossible that also some plants use temperature as signal for flower differentiation...

Evolutionarily could be an advantage to develop bisex flowers in limit zone, where  there may not be other Papaya.


It's just imagination, I was wondering if someone knows more..

vstol

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2016, 09:58:28 PM »
Probably a very stupid question but still asking out of curiosity - can one prune a coconut palm the same way?

Mike T

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Re: Can I prune my papaya?
« Reply #17 on: December 28, 2016, 05:50:15 AM »
No the non clumping palms are usually history if cut below the crown shaft.

 

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