Exotic flowers and plants - Papaya.

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    Synonyms and local names.

    Papaya; papaya, pawpaw, melon papaw, melon tree - in English; papayer, figuier des iles - in French; Papaya, Papaya baum - in German. Papaya - one of the most important fruit trees of the tropical zone. Its fruits are included in the daily diet of millions of people.


    Origin and Distribution.

    Papaya - the ancient Aztec and Mayan culture. Wild ancestor of the plant science is unknown. Suggest that the papaya came from Guatemala and southern Mexico. The current name of the plant comes from the word ababai. So it calls the population of the islands in the Caribbean Sea. Europeans first became acquainted with this plant in the XV century. after the discovery of America by Columbus. In the XVI century. Vasco da Gama called him "the golden tree of India."

    World production of papaya fruit is growing, it is primarily associated with a significant increase in the production of papaya in Brazil. Major producers of papaya are also Mexico and Nigeria, India, Indonesia.

    The botanical characteristics.

    Papaya (Carica papaya L.) is part of a small family Karikova or papayevyh (Caricaceae), representatives of which are found mainly in tropical and subtropical regions of Central and South America. In appearance papaya bears little resemblance to other tree fruit plants. Its trunk is more like the trunk of a palm tree. Papaya is growing very rapidly, reaching to 5 years of 4-6 m.

    The life span of papaya - for about 20 years, and culture - not more than 4 years. In young plants core is filled with a soft, loose tissue, and in adults it is hollow. The plant has a very strong crust, which consists of such strong and thick fibers, which of them do ropes and cables.

    At the top of the plant forms a rosette of large 7-9 lobed dissected leaves with long petioles, which are formed in the axils of flowers and later fruit. Papaya found 5 different types of flowers. In the culture of plants are bred mainly with female type of flower and a small number of plants with male flowers - as pollinators.

    Papaya fruit - berry, shape, structure, taste, and even the chemical composition reminiscent of melon. Hence the other name of the plant - "papaya". Fruit weight reaches 7.6 kg of cultivars - 1-3 kg. Thick green skin when ripe fruit becomes golden yellow. The edible part of the fruit - pulp of an orange-yellow color. The inner cavity is filled with lots of seeds - 700 or more.

    Preserved memories of the Spanish explorers who first saw the papaya plant. Tall trees with bare trunks without branches. At the top of the barrel delicate leaves in the form of an umbrella, and under them thickly hung fruit that looks and tastes like already known to them melons. Hence, one of the names went papaya - "papaya".

    Papaya is characterized by very intensive growth and early appearance of fruit. The figurative expression of Professor S. Penenzheka, papaya - "tree impatient gardener", as it begins to bear fruit in the year of sowing and continues until the end of life. Whole fruit papaya permeate microscopic jointed tubes filled with white latex - latex. In immature fruit juice white and very toxic, with fruit ripening it from the white becomes watery and loses its poisonous properties.

    The fruits are tied in the leaf axils 1-2 on a sheet, which indicates the high productivity of the plant. Under optimal growing conditions, the fruits ripen throughout the year and brings a very high yields.

    Chemical composition.

    Energy content of 100 g edible portion of the fruit papaya - 26-74 calories. Papaya fruit not only in appearance but also in their chemical composition very close to the melon. They contain glucose and fructose, organic acids, fat, protein, vitamin C, beta-carotene, vitamin B1, B2, B5 and D. Mineral substances represented potassium, calcium, phosphorus, sodium, iron.

    Of particular value to the fruit gives papain, the plant enzyme, in its action similar to gastric juice. It consists of a protease enzyme and other enzymes like pepsin. Yellow fruit is not due to carotene and karikaksantinom. In the green fruit, leaves, stems papaya contains latex - latex. It is composed of proteolytic enzymes papain and papayotin, malic acid, fatty oil, resin, alkaloid karpain. The leaves have also been found, and the alkaloid glycoside karpozid karpain.

    Therapeutic and preventive properties.

    Papaya fruit is used primarily as a valuable dietary product that promotes digestion. There is evidence that they help with a stomach ulcer. In the United States of papaya release tablets are used to treat herpes. Obtained from unripe fruits therapeutic preparation papain, which is the dried milky juice.

    Papain cleaves the human stomach proteins, and like pepsin, promotes lipolysis. In this regard, it is especially useful for people suffering from protein deficiency due to the body's inability to fully or partially digest proteins. Papain is used in medicine as well as in the treatment of blood antikoagulyatora thrombosis gastritis.

    Outwardly papain is used to treat burns, in cosmetics - for removing freckles and to remove unwanted hair. Plant enzyme papain, which destroys the keratin and weakens the hair has grown and inhibiting the formation of new hair.

    The use of traditional medicine.

    In tropical countries, papaya juice is used in diseases of the spine: it contains an enzyme that regenerates the connective tissue of the intervertebral discs. The juice is used as an anthelmintic. The dried milky juice of unripe papaya fruit in a number of countries of the tropical belt is used for the treatment of gastric diseases and eczema.

    Side effects, contraindications.

    It is known that the milky sap that is contained in the unripe fruit is very poisonous. Its toxic properties it loses when white becomes colorless, watery.


    Peel of ripe fruit green with yellow and orange blush. The fruit must be sufficiently soft to the touch, the correct form and have a sweet, not pungent smell.


    Fruit destined for export were collected before, usually at the beginning of yellowing of the skin. These fruits can be stored for several weeks at a temperature of 5-10 ° C. They were then allowed to ripen at a high temperature that they possess a characteristic flavor and aroma. Papaya fruit will mature more quickly if stored in a single package with bananas. At room conditions ripe fruit can be stored no more than 2-3 days in the refrigerator and they can be kept for about a week. To freeze the papaya fruit unsuitable.


    The use of papaya is now very widely: there are more than 100 kinds of products and preparations made from fruits and other plant parts. Mature fruits consumed mainly in fresh form. In tropical and subtropical countries eat papaya fruit for morning breakfast, as well as in salads. Unripe fruits are used as a vegetable. When there are high yields and can not use the fruit for its intended purpose, they are fattened pigs.

    Papaya is the only source of raw material for production of papain, which is in great demand in the international markets. For its production planted special plantation.

    The milky sap is extracted mainly from the unripe fruit. They make an incision, and a milky sap flows and thickens on the surface of the fruit. Then scraped collectors thickened juice. From one hectare during the year receive up to 100 kg of papain. The collected juice enters for processing, where it is prepared of pure papain, chymopapain, peptidase and other enzyme preparations.

    Papain has the ability to dissolve proteins and rolling milk. This feature of it is used to soften the toughest meat. In the tropics, the old beef wrapped in papaya leaves, and after a few hours it becomes soft and spongy, as young veal. With the same purpose in soups and stir-fry the pieces of papaya fruit is added.

    Papain is widely used in the food industry for the clarification of wine, liqueurs, to give the young wine taste of old vintage wine, to flavor cheeses, for juices, confectionery and so on. D. It is also used in perfumery, when tanning. In the United States, millions of papain treated steaks, used for the tanning of hides, clarification of beer. In Central America, the local population uses papaya leaves instead of soap for washing clothes.

    Serving etiquette.

    The fruits are served for dessert or added to salads. They are cut lengthwise, remove seeds with a spoon. The rind is inedible, so it is removed. The flesh is cut into slices or chunks and eat with juice of lemon, lime or orange. Papaya is used in green salads or fruit from it we can make a smoothie. If you are preparing meals in the recipe which include gelatin, papaya should first boil.

    Unripe fruits are used as a vegetable with spices, salt, they are served as an appetizer with ham, cheese, crabs. They can also be boiled, starting sharply seasoned minced meat and bake. Stuffed with meat.

    Growing up in the home.

    Propagated by seeds and plant cuttings. Seeds are sown in early March in light fertile soil (sod, ground sheet, peat, sand, taken in equal amounts) and moderately moisturize. 7-10 days appear amicable shoots. Seedlings grow rapidly in the first year of their transplant 2-3 times - each time in a slightly larger vessels.

    When propagating cuttings using 1-2 year old plant with thick stem up to 1.5 cm. Stems are divided into lengths of 8-10 cm. Since their very juicy slices, the cuttings before planting dried for 2-3 days in a warm dry place, and then placed for rooting in bowls or boxes filled with well-washed coarse sand.

    Papaya is very photophilous and low light in winter and autumn was perhaps the main obstacle to its wide distribution in the rooms. Therefore, from October to March, the plant needs supplementary lighting, fluorescent lamps. The distance between the lamps and the top sheet must be at least 30 cm.

    Of course, in rooms papaya is different at such a rapid growth, both in the natural environment, and only blooms for 3-4 th year. Once the roots reach the walls of the pot, the plant gently from his knock and thrown into a new vessel (5-6 cm in diameter larger than the previous). With rare transplants growth papaya almost stops and for many years it does not bloom as if pausing in its development.

    Like any fast growing plant, papaya is very responsive to fertilizers. Fed him from February to October (with an interval of 10 days), in the spring - ammonium nitrate with microelements in the summer - NPK and superphosphate. Adult plants (over two years) to use - soil "TERRA VITA" and vermiculite (1: 1). The root system of papaya surface, so its landing approach vessels shallow and wide.

    As a representative of the tropical papaya tree needs heat content and can not stand the sharp fluctuations in air temperature: 24-26 ° C - in the summer, 18-20 ° C - in the winter. regularly sprayed. Tissue stem and leaves of papaya is juicy, so watered it regularly, but in small doses. The decay of the root collar of waterlogged soil - perhaps the main cause of death in the plant rooms for beginners growers.

    Pests of papaya tree most dangerous aphids and spider mites. Deal with them are using infusions and decoctions of various insecticidal herbs (feverfew, onion, garlic, yarrow, etc..). In cool and wet weather on the leaves appear white patches ("mildew") - a disease caused by a microscopic fungus. To get rid of it, you need to treat the plant with a weak solution of copper sulfate or sulfur colloid.


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