[nafex] Pawpaw survival

sherwin sherwindu at att.net
Wed Jul 10 23:51:50 EDT 2013

On 7/10/2013 9:25 PM, Matt Demmon wrote:
> I bet it is either:
> -soil is too alkaline/acidic/rocky
> -elevation
> -relative humidity is too low
> -not enough moisture
> -soil isn't deep enough
> -too cold, at night, or in the winter, or temperature shifts too greatly
> -not hot enough for a long enough season
> -sunlight is too intense
> -too much wind
> Or a combination of them. It's really not the climate or even bioregion
> they are adapted to. Even here in Michigan, in my experience, they need
> deep, rich, preferably moist soil, lots of heat, not too much cold, not too
> much temperature fluctuation, too be kept free from weeds, and in a
> generally protected site. They seem to do the absolute best either along
> rivers, near the great lakes, or in urban heat islands, all of which
> moderate temperatures.
> My advice is give up and grow something that does better in your climate! I
> bet you can grow some killer plums there, while here they get brown rot,
> black knot, infinite bugs, and it's so darn cloudy all the time they never
> get all that sweet anyways.
> -matt
> z5 se MI

       You may be giving the right advice about Pawpaws being difficult
       to grow, but I think it possibly can be done even in New Mexico 
with the
       proper techniques.  I know of several plants from the west coast that
       are not recommended for our zone 5 here, but people manage to grow
       some of them.  Maybe, it is a micro climate issue.

       As far as cold, my Pawpaws have survived several Chicago winters,
       so I don't think the cold is killing them.  The season here in the
       Midwest is not known for long summers, so I doubt lack of heat
       is an issue.

       Yes, the desert sun can be scorching, but  that should not bother
       this tropical plant once it has come out of it's initial early years
       of required shade.

       Water can be an issue, but with proper irrigation, that can be 

        I think there is not much technical knowledge or studies about 
        We still have a lot to learn about these plants.  Sure, it would 
be a lot
        or work to grow these in his location, but if he really wants to 
        Pawpaws, I say under the right conditions and with enough effort,
        it may work.

                            Sherwin Dubren
                            Morton Grove, IL

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