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Squeeze the papaya. You have to monitor the ripeness of the papaya first. The change of texture is from hard to soft is a sign that it is ripening. Don’t wait until the end becomes soft and mushy. Another way to test for ripeness is press the skin of the papaya with your finger. The more it gives, the riper the fruit. The fast-growing but short-lived plant is sometimes called pawpaw or mikana, and may reach a height of 20 or 30 feet. How to Know When a Papaya on a Tree Is Ready to Be Picked? How to Know When a Papaya on a Tree Is Ready to Be Picked. It is called a “tree-like” plant and grows a little taller than the average gardener. A papaya plant will mature in six to nine months if you live in a warm region but may take up to 11 months in cooler areas. If you are growing a papaya tree in a container then it is vital that you do prune your tree in this way as it will help keep your papaya tree dwarf and a good size for growing in containers. A full-time writer since 2007, Axl J. Amistaadt is a DMS 2013 Outstanding Contributor Award recipient. If you are growing your papaya tree in the ground you should still use this method as it is a lot easier to harvest your papaya off your tree when it is in arms reach and not way up high in a tall tree. Monitor the ripening papaya daily. He also covers parenting, juvenile science experiments, cooking and alternative/home remedies. Step 2. Months After Planting. What Months Are Papaya Trees Ready for Picking? Read on for tips on how to know when it is time to start harvesting papaya fruit as well as information on papaya harvesting methods. If you are wondering how ripe the fruit should be when you pick it, here are some tips. As papayas age, they weaken and produce less fruit. I'm too lazy to climb ladders to pick papayas, so if a tree gets too tall I just cut it down, about two feet of the ground. Yep, its hand picking the fruit. Commercial growers pick papayas as soon as they begin to color to prevent animal predation. It also gives subtle fragrance of papaya; because raw papaya does not have its distinctive fragrance.. Another trick is to press your finger gently near the base of the papaya. A green one should be left for a few more days until it turns orange or yellow. Many people think of papaya (Carica papaya) as a tree, but it’s really a large herb with a tall barkless and branchless trunk crowned by a shock of large leaves. California Rare Fruit Growers, Inc.: Papaya -- Carica papaya L. Raw Food Health: How to Ripen Papaya and Pick Out the Best One, Guide to Houseplants: How to Grow Papaya Tree Indoors, How to Tell if a Red Lady Papaya Is Ready to Pick. The amount of yellow peel coloring increases as the fruit continues to ripen. However, the fruit flavor is best when the skin is 80 percent colored. You have to look at the skin of the papaya if it is predominantly orange or yellow than green, but firm in texture then it is ripe. If it gets cold, the tree will rapidly wilt and suffer. 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