Babaco, Mountain Papaya (Carica pentagona)

Rated 3.6 out of 5 stars
5 Reviews
Regular price $29.95
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71 in stock

Pot Size

The Mountain Papaya, also known as Babaco, is a fascinating and exotic plant ideal for adventurous gardeners. Native to the highlands of South America, particularly in Ecuador, this plant is a smaller, more cold-tolerant relative of the common papaya. It's characterized by its unique, pentagonal shape and compact size, generally reaching about 5 to 8 feet in height, which makes it suitable for smaller gardens or as a container plant in colder climates.

The Mountain Papaya stands out for its striking, elongated fruits, which have a distinctive five-sided shape. These fruits are smooth-skinned, turning from green to a bright yellow as they ripen. Unlike common papayas, the Mountain Papaya's fruits are seedless, with a juicy and soft flesh that offers a deliciously sweet and slightly tangy flavor, reminiscent of a mix of papaya, melon, and strawberry.

When it comes to growing conditions, the Mountain Papaya is relatively hardy but prefers a temperate to subtropical climate. It can withstand cooler temperatures better than its tropical cousins but should be protected from frost. The plant thrives in full sun to partial shade and requires well-drained soil. Regular watering is essential, especially during dry periods, but care should be taken to avoid waterlogging.

Ideal for those seeking an unusual and tasty addition to their garden, the Mountain Papaya is not only attractive but also offers the reward of its unique, flavorful fruits. Its ease of care and resilience to cooler temperatures make it a valuable plant for a range of garden settings.

Plant Type:
Tropical/Subtropical Evergreen Fruit Tree

Harvest Season:

Mature Size:
6-12 ft. 

Soil & Moisture:
Grows best in sandy, well-draining soil. They love water but hate water logged roots, so make sure to plant your Papaya trees in soil with good drainage. Drought tolerant once established.

Light Requirements:
Full Sun


Growth Rate:
Very Fast!

Zone Hardiness:
Outdoors 9-11 (frost protection until established); Patio/Greenhouse 4+

Our Red Lady Papaya trees are grown from seed and are capable to produce fruit in less than a year.

Rated 3.6 out of 5 stars
Based on 5 reviews
Total 5 star reviews: 2 Total 4 star reviews: 1 Total 3 star reviews: 1 Total 2 star reviews: 0 Total 1 star reviews: 1
60%would recommend this product
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5 reviews
  • MR Profile picture for Matthew logo
    Matthew R.
    Verified Buyer
    I recommend this product
    Years Gardening 1-5
    Grown This Variety Before? Yes
    Rated 5 out of 5 stars
    3 months ago
    healthy small tree

    I like the soil they use to grow these plants in. If this company has the trees I want I will always buy from them because they use superior soil compared to competitors. I've tried growing babaco's and papayas before but they always die of root rot when I bring them indoors over winter. But with the soil they use and my past experience I think I will be successful this time.

  • L
    Rated 3 out of 5 stars
    7 months ago
    3 Stars

    Definitely alot smaller than i expected for the price , pretty much a small twig growing spiraled ,the leaves died off but they at least seem like they made it through the shipping and i have high hopes they will do good for me .

  • A
    I recommend this product
    Rated 5 out of 5 stars
    7 months ago
    5 Stars

    its difficult to grow as my first one died of root rot. The new plant looks healthy and I hope for better luck.

  • A
    I recommend this product
    Rated 4 out of 5 stars
    1 year ago
    4 Stars

    It was smaller than expected, but healthy and green.

  • T
    I do not recommend this product
    Rated 1 out of 5 stars
    1 year ago
    1 Star

    Typically I have nothing bad to say about this company. But this particular plant I was not impressed with. Root system was almost non existent. The stem itself looked alright. All foliage was sitting at the bottom of box so hopefully it starts throwing out some soon. As I am worried about just getting stem dye back if not.

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