Best edible deer fence

The paw2 tree makes the best deer fence. All you need seeds from 2 paw2 fruits. Safe the seeds, plant them in the fall around your garden, 10 feet apart. Do not buy young plants, you need the taproot. After the second year you need to graft the varieties you like. After they grow to about 8 feet, cut of the central leader, now you are good to go. It takes time but well worth. I don’t have any time left at 83, you do.
You can use inground figtrees also, don’t care if winter kills them they come back up. 300 feet of Smith figtrees or a more winter Hardy variety would be great. Grow one tree, take cuttings and make 50 new trees. Just another cheap way.
Tnhunter, you got this huge Chicago Hardy tree, you can make a hundred tree’s easy in 2022. Cutting from one tree is enough.
The only expensive thing to buy would be golf cart or 4 wheeler to pick your paw/figs.n

![image|690x517](upload://gep6DmpZl0naBeoKqR0ETO4hOif.jpeg

10 Likes

Please say more about this. Sounds like potted pawpaws might not develop a strong taproot?

1 Like

Is this shorthand for pawpaw? If so it seems like deer would be attracted to it, isn’t that true?

The leaves, bark, seeds all contain acetogenins, toxic to consume. Deer may munch inquisitively once on a few leaves, but they won’t be back.

Pawpaws potted in 14"+ pots will have a strong taproot. They can grow 16"+ taproots their first year. Anything grown in standard nursery pots runs a risk of poor root development.

1 Like

I wish this was true. Something stole/ate 100% of my pawpaw seeds planted in pots this spring.

I’m sure whatever squirrels stole them didn’t actually end up eating them… Keep an eye out for pawpaws sprouting in your garden beds :grin:

They did the same thing with my avocados last year.

There’s nothing magical about a taproot - on pawpaws or any other species.
I’ve ‘imprisoned’ pawpaw seedlings in 20 oz styrofoam cups for 3 years or longer, lopping off roots that ‘escaped’ through the drainage holes, and yearly pulling them out, chopping off circling roots in the bottom, and adding some fresh soil, until I could figure out where to plant them.
On numerous occasions, I’ve done ‘mass-plantings’ of 30 or so pawpaw seeds in 3-gallon pots… left them in there for a year or two, pulled the rootbound mass out, whacked off a huge mass of circling roots in the bottom, added new soil to take the place of that excised root mass, and grew them out for another year before up-potting each individual to its own 1-gallon pot, pruning off roots so that it would ‘fit’. Outplanted to permanent location a year (or two) later. All survived planting in full sun - with no supplemental shade.
I’m not saying this is the best way to handle them… just that the mystical, magical properties some folks attribute to taproots are just… misguided. For most species, a taproot is principally an energy-reserve storage vessel to fuel shoot growth in spring - and allows the seedling to re-grow - often multiple times - after being grazed/browsed off.

6 Likes

You must have them growing in super ideal condition, enough rain.
Learn my lesson the hard way, buying paw paw tree’s mail order, same with Asian persimmon. I live in Arkansas, rocky soil. I prefer planting seeds from trees growing in my area. They can handle droughts much better. Nothing mystical, healthy tree’s, plenty fruits.
Bought Wabash tree’s, a few others a few years back, nursery known for the tree’s enormous rootball, guess what, none made it. I do take care of my tree’s.

Deer stay away from paw paw leaves, they will eat ripe paw2 but here they usually don’t bother.

I don’t doubt your experience in the least Lucky. I have heard very contradictory discussions on this topic many times now and many have a strong opinion. I think it has a lot to do with rain/nutrient availability /soil health in general as to whether someone has success with a smaller root system. I’m not opposed to trying both ways to see what works for me personally, but if I was going to sell trees I’d lean towards a very large taproot just to be safe.

Hi,
This is my first time replying on this site, but I have to say:
Paw paw trees, at least at my location on the south shore of Long Island, NY, are crazy invasive! Those suckers are coming up everywhere!
The original trees I planted, over 10 years ago, had arrived as bareroot saplings from a mail-order catalog. No warning that they were invasive, and I thought they were supposed to be dwarf trees, or large shrubs. Now, they must be over 20’ tall. I made the mistake of planting 3 “varieties” in the back of my property, before the first two got crazy, some years ago. They are even worse.
I used to enjoy the fruit, and the birds/raccoons/squirrels made most of the fruit disappear.
I neglected my property for a couple of years, due to illness. Now, everything has become invasive: grape, kiwi, pipeline, and honeysuckle vines, elderberry bushes (trees?), etc. But, the Paw paws are too much. I can’t handle all the suckers, and nothing is eating enough of the fruit. They’re falling on the ground, and stepping on a large one is not fun, at all. There are also little seedlings from previous years I have to deal with. I’m starting to dislike the fruit. I can only eat one at a time. (Maybe two, if I’m really hungry.) I think the toxic chemicals in the seeds are also in the flesh, to some extent.
So, now, I’ve started cutting the trees down. It’s sad to cut down healthy trees, that are producing so much fruit, but I can’t deal with them, anymore.
So, reading someone suggest planting so many Paw Paw trees as a deer fence, makes me cringe.
Honey, if you’re 83, now, how are you going to handle it, when, years from now, each of your trees wants to become its own forest?
I would definitely stick with the fig trees.
Best of luck to you!

1 Like

Thanks for the warning, I have lived on my property going on 23 years, my paw2 tree’s are about 9 to 10 feet tall and they will be shortened this fall to about 8. Just top of the central leader. In my neighborhood I have seen some 20 footers, mine don’t produce suckers except one, way down the hill. You can trained them when young so they start fruiting at a very young age and stunt their growth. If you leave their seed laying around I can see a problem. I have about a dozen of them, that’s way too many for me, like you I don’t eat that much.

I’m having some problems logging on to this site, but I seem able to reply to you.
Yes, I should have kept the trees small, from the outset, but I just never knew it would get this bad. In the worst spots, in a square yard, there are about 10 seedlings and suckers. And, of course, several suckers sprout up around the stem of each one I cut. It just doesn’t end. I’m trying to bag the fallen fruit, among all my other projects to catch up with my neglected property. But, I see the seeds all over the ground, from previous seasons, and cleaning them all up will have to wait.
When I cut down the trees, and if I keep up with the sucker-cutting, do you think the root system will eventually “run out of steam” and stop trying to grow?

In most cases, the roots are more or less close to the surface. With native persimmon I,ll find the one closest to the main tree, try to jerk it out and cut it off closer to the tree rootball. With persimmon, if you let the new sprouts grow it will eventually weaken the mother tree. I don’t think it’s a fun job.
You could do what I did,check this out clearing bamboo.

Could I borrow that? Please?

The question I had, was: if I cut down the tree, and continue cutting off the sprouts, would they eventually stop growing?

1 Like

You notice the 2 paw2 trees in the picture?,a short one and a taller one that’s the time to train them, grow wide so that the branches inner weave. If you train a paw2 tree all by itself, you can make it a beautiful ornamental tropical looking tree in your landscape.

Best time to do that is around August after a drought when tree’s are suffering, starving for water. The big trees, you can them down to a 4 or 5 feet stump around the end of winter, pick out 4 new shoots close to the top and rub all other’s of. Thy will come back, just an option.

I’ve grown pawpaws for over ten years here in KS/MO. I’ve not seen them invasive here, where Louis and Clark discovered them as native trees at the intersection of the KS and MO rivers.

I’ve also not seen them throw up root suckers here. I do see the fruit fall to the ground and throw up new seedlings. I think the invasive part is the seeds which sprout easily, not suckers. But I would not call them anything near invasive here. Heck, honey locust, hedge, red cedar/juniper, and a good many other trees would be considered much more invasive here.

Of course Long Island is perhaps a different climate than the pawpaws natural climate here in the Midwest. But they are so far from invasive here, they are actually somewhat rare (in their original discovered habitat). I’ve tried to spread the seeds and had almost universal failure trying to get them to come up in forested areas.

The pawpaw fruit on my acreage are almost destroyed by coons and possums. They are a very aromatic fruit, which attracts those omnivores.

1 Like

After 6 years, my grafted Shenandoah set fruit for the first time this year. In addition, one sucker is coming up, too. I know for sure that it is a sucker because the tree never fruited before this year. I never dropped any pawpaw seeds on the ground (a friend gave me some of his pawpaws these past two years).

My guess is that the rootstock of @VickyNY ‘s pawpaw must be a kind that suckers badly. I hope mine would not be that bad!!

1 Like