See you tomorrow at to celebrate National Pawpaw Day!
Dedicated to spreading the knowledge and love of the North American Pawpaw (Asimina triloba).
See you tomorrow at to celebrate National Pawpaw Day!
All set up and ready for Saturday at Fall Plant Fest! Come on out!
Super excited to be back at for Fall Plant Fest this Friday and Saturday! Stop by, say hi, and grab some seedlings, fruit, jam, and more!
Goldenrod acts as an fantastic indicator for local pawpaw ripeness. When the goldenrod blossoms peak in color and fullness, there's a high probability that the nearby pawpaw fruits are prime for harvesting.
Grateful for the mention in this article over at
Nice article about pawpaw in general as well as specifically in the Richmond area. Check it out!
We’ll be vending at the Buchanan Hall Farmers Market in Upperville, VA tomorrow! Fresh pawpaws, trees, jam and more!
The 2023 pawpaw season in Virginia has begun!
Genetics are fun. Check out the little venation (vein pattern) mutation on a pawpaw seedling.
Side note: Venation Mutation would be a great band name 🌱😈
Ailanthus aka Tree of Heaven. The bane of my existence. Not only is this highly invasive tree a host for the dreaded spotted lantern fly, but it has its own web worm, Atteva punctella, which has developed a taste for pawpaws. Over the years, these webworms have completely defoliated some of the younger pawpaw trees.
Today I noticed something interesting… When I crushed the leaves and stems of very young ailanthus, it shared a similar “gasoline-like” smell of crushed pawpaw leaves. Might explain why they are interested in pawpaws too…
I haven’t posted in a while but busy working on exciting things coming up this fall! For now, enjoy this baby praying mantis on a baby pawpaw 💚
The first real signs of success after seed sowing is the “pink knuckle” rising out of soil. But check how much it’s been working to get to that point!
Also, does this not look like a dino-skeleton?🦕🦴😆
Spring pawpaw work made better with our favorite coworker 🐾 🌱
A comment I often hear is "We have a ton of wild pawpaw trees, but we've never have fruit!"
Pawpaw trees grow from seed, but they can also grow asexually from a lateral clonal root system. While it may look like there are a number of separate trees, underground they can all be essentially "one plant" from a biological perspective, sharing identical genetics. Thus, they can't self pollinate (for the most part) and with no pollination, there will be no fruit. These "root suckers" can pop up right next to the main tree or even up to 15 feet away, creating a typical pawpaw patch.
*Image adapted from "The American Home Garden" by Alexander Watson (circa 1859)
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Happy New Year! Any resolutions to read more? Check out some favorites!
Did you know that the orange and yellow colors we see on pawpaw leaves during the fall are actually present year round and just not visible? Yep! When the green chlorophyll in the leaves starts to break down (caused by less sun exposure, not colder temperatures), we can finally see the yellows and oranges pop before they drop!
Important to mention this is NOT the case for other deciduous tree leaves that turn red in the fall. That is due to a newly produced color caused by trapped sugars producing anthocyanins. Think dogwoods, oaks, and some maples.
November marks the end of pawpaw season in our part of Virginia. No more fresh or refrigerated fruit, the leaves are changing, and trees are getting ready for a sleepy winter.
It’s time to celebrate a big year for Woodside Pawpaw. We’ve transitioned from a small educational farm resource to a recognized orchard and licensed nursery. We launched our website (www.woodsidepawpaw.com), had our first round of in-person sales this Fall, and have big plans for 2023. Stay tuned, pawpeople.
A huge thank you to everyone that came out over the weekend to support us! We sold out and couldn’t be more grateful to share our love and knowledge of pawpaws with our community! Until next time!
Pawpaw lovers! We’re at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden Fall PlantFest until 3 p.m. today! We’re selling 1-3 year seedlings, fruit, jam, and more! 🌱
I’ve seen too many broken branches, maimed fruit, and even hacked down pawpaw trees this year 😭 Really thrilled about the increased interest in our beloved tree and fruit, but please, please, please educate others on how to forage properly.
Hey, pawpaw lovers! 👋 Stop by our booth at Fall PlantFest next Friday and Saturday, Sept. 16 -17, at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden! We’ll be selling seedlings, fruit, and more!
Beating the heat with our pawpopsicles!
Following up on the last post regarding sunburn, here’s a way to help prevent any potential issues with your new grafts or young seedlings.
Remember that pawpaws are most often an understory tree and rely on taller trees for shade protection until they’re old enough or tall enough (~18 inches) to fend for themselves. KSU recommends using 30% shade cloth but anywhere from 10-50 can be used depending on your area. For example, if you’re in a particularly hot dry and sunny location (i.e. south), higher percentage shade cloth is recommended. If you’re in a cooler, wetter, shaded location, go for a lower shade cloth percentage.
When in doubt, go for a 30% and you should be covered.
These incredibly resilient trees can often recover from sunburn based on their already established root system. So even if your pawpaws got sunburnt and seemed to have died, all might not be lost! Patience is the lesson here.
Stay tuned for the next post regarding sun protection in young trees!
Swipe for fruit development time machine!
*and please use your best SpongeBob narrator voice
If you go the traditional method of seed germination, you’ll start to see evidence of growth around mid-July in the center of the Pawpaw Belt. Pawpaws undergo hypogeal germination, so they develop their deep root system before the stem emerges above ground (without cotyledons). As such, it may look like the pawpaws haven’t germinated, but usually there is a lot of action below the soil and you might see new development daily!
As sad as it was to lose some trees from June’s storm, it provided an opportunity to pull apart some of the larger damaged pawpaws to explore the “functional uses” of the pawpaw tree. Research shows that Indigenous peoples used the pawpaws inner bark for baskets, nets, and other resources, and it’s easy to see why. The stringy bark is exceptionally strong and comes off in long strips.
As mentioned in a prior post, it’s possible that they used trees with lower quality fruit, thus indirectly (or maybe even directly) aiding in superior pawpaw cultivation.
Still assessing the damage from this past weekend’s storm. We lost about 30 trees on the property, 5 of which were pawpaws. It could have been much, much worse, but it still hurts 😔
Happy Father’s Day to all the ‘pawpaws’ out there! Shout out to my pawpaw for this awesome 3d printing project
Perhaps one of the reasons people “have never seen pawpaw fruit” is because they almost blend in with the leaves.
So it’s time to practice! How many new pawpaws do you see growing?
Spidey seems to be enjoying the yeasty-scented goodness as well!
Did a fun thing and gave this (previously unnamed) color a name! (via colorname.org)
With winter (hopefully) behind us, it’s a great time to prune your trees! An important note—pruning or shaping pawpaw trees is an optional and personal choice. Some growers swear by it, while others let nature run it’s course. I particularly like not having to use a ladder or risk the damage to fruit by natural drop.
Today I’m sharing one of my favorite graphics regarding pawpaw pruning and shaping from the book, For The Love of Pawpaws, by Michael Judd - . Pay particular attention to the lateral branch angles for strong limbs to bear fruit. Also worth noting is the amount of air flow between branching, which helps reduce potential fungal growth.
Be sure to check out Michael’s books for all things pawpaw and permaculture related!
A Pawpaw Martini toast to all of the incredible women in our lives this International Women’s Day!
It's Scion Time! Scion wood is taken from trees with exceptional qualities (cultivars) and later grafted onto rootstock to produce a clone of that cultivar. In late winter, when temperatures are above freezing for at least 24 hours but trees are still dormant, you can start the process of collecting scion wood.
Choose a piece from last year's growth (the darker portion at the tip of a branch) about 8 inches long and containing at least 3 flower buds. Make an angled cut just above a bud and place the scion stick in a marked zip lock bag with a moisture holding medium (wood shavings, sphagnum moss, paper towel, etc.) and keep in the refrigerator until its time to graft. You want to leave the flower buds on for as long as you can, and then rub them off just before grafting.
Scion cutting can be done at the same time as shaping and pruning, which will be discussed in the next post!
When I’m not doing pawpaw things, I’m a high school special education teacher.
I have to share this story a student wrote last week. Clearly I talk about pawpaws too much at school 😂
There have been a number of questions regarding Sun Scald prevention. Sun Scald, aka Southwest Injury, is essentially a sunburn on the southwestern facing side of the tree. While the plant tissue goes dormant for winter, the sun tricks plant cells into opening up, then exposing the waking growth to freezing temperatures once the sun goes down. Sun Scald can stunt tree growth, create fissure entries for disease and pests, and lead to overall tree injury.
We coat the trunks on trees over 1.5 inches with an organic white tree paint. Many growers use 50/50 watered down white latex paint or commercial tree wrap as well.
Check out this quick recipe for a delicious Pawpaw Jam. (A personal favorite, second best to fruit right off the tree!)
3.5 cups pawpaw pulp
1.75 cups sugar
1 teaspoon ascorbic acid
1 ounce pectin
On the stove, bring pawpaw pulp to a simmer. Let simmer for five minutes while slowly stirring in sugar. Stir in pectin and ascorbic acid then bring to a boil. Once at a boil, turn off heat and pour into sterilized half pint jars. Place sealed jars back into boiling hot water bath for 10 minutes, then take out and let cool for proper seal.
With the weather getting below freezing in many parts of the country, it is important to protect the fragile roots of any seedlings not yet in the ground. While everyone has their favorite method of protecting these plants (putting them in a garage or greenhouse, surrounding pots with mulch or hay, etc), our preferred method is to bury them! Dig a big hole and line it with rocks & pebbles for drainage. You also want to use some kind barrier so animals don't step on the pots or munch on the new sprouts in the spring.
The beautiful fall leaves of the North American Pawpaw. With their bright yellow color, now is a great time to scout out wild patches for 2022!
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