Asimina triloba (Linnaeus) Dunal
The papaw is a tall shrub or small tree from ten to forty-five
feet in height It grows in rich ground along river bottoms, where
owing to the soft and unobtrusive coloring of the flowers, it is
easily overlooked when in bloom. The flowers appear earlier than
the leaves, along with those of dogwood and redbud, but the fruits
do not ripen until October. They grow singly or in sparse bunches,
and are of the size and shape of short stout bananas. When ripe,
they are colored deep yellow. Opinions differ as to their payabil-
ity, but many persons enjoy their sweet aromatic flavor. The old
French settlers called them "assimin," a name derived from that
used in a dialect of the Algonquian Indians, and the genus name
is derived from this term. The papaw belongs to the tropical Anona
Family, but the eight species of Asimina are all native in the south-
ern United States.
This specimen grew on Plummers Island, Maryland, near Wash-
ington, District of Columbia.
Papaw ranges from Florida westward to Texas and Kansas and
northward to New York, southern Ontario, and Michigan.
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