PAPAYA TREE UPDATEAt first I got carried away with papaya trees. They grow so quickly. In just a few months they shoot up like a weed and produce so many fruits it is mind boggling. I had it all planned, I would plant 15 trees and from the hundreds of fruits I could sell some and money problem solved. Just see how Maya tricks us.
First problem is if it is too hot the trees will not set fruit.
Second problem is the pests. The mealy bugs, the giant green caterpillars than eat a whole tree overnight, and not last and certainly not least is the giant fruit fly that lays its eggs in the developing fruit. The worms then eat the insides and what they don't eat they contaminate.
What to do?
Okay it cooled off and the fruits began to set, at least 50 or 60 per tree. I only have the one tree mature enough for now.
Take the mealy bugs and caterpillars off by hand.
The fruit fly is so bold one landed on my arm while I was tending the tree as if to taunt me.
Suggestions on Google were to put paper bags over the fruits, or wax paper... one person enclosed the fruits in old nylon stockings.
I made a few little cloth bags to test out. Cloth is not enough. The fruit fly will bore right through cloth. Then I lined the bag with wax paper. Good. It worked. After two rolls of wax paper I ran out and started using old plastic shopping bags as a lining.
The tree looks a little odd with all the bags... and I wonder if we get a good rain and some wind if the whole thing might not just fall over.
I'm not looking to make a fortune growing papayas anymore. But it would be nice if there were at a least couple of fruits after all of this to offer to Krishna.