It’s so ironic. After complaining publicly about the abortive flowers on my oldest Red Lady papaya tree, I’ve finally got my wish, and the first flower opened today!
I noticed yesterday that one flower was unusually large and looked like the petals were about to split open – but that has happened before, and the flowers aborted. So, when I noticed the bud yesterday, I figured it was going to be another one of those. Don’t taunt me, I thought, and moved on.
Well, it listened.
The little flash of white caught my eye this evening, and to my delight, I feasted my eyes on the first papaya flower.
It may be coincidental, but this flower opened almost exactly 8 months after the seed sprouted – or 39 weeks and 2 days, to be precise.
So now the next question arises – when will we see some fruit on the tree?
Well, what I thought were hermaphrodite flowers were actually developing female flowers. The base unfortunately fattened as the bud matured, and I realize I have a female tree on my hands. At least, I think so. If this is the case, I have to wait for my other trees to mature, and hope that one of them will be able to fertilize this one.
You know how they say be careful of what you ask for? I should have asked for a hermaphroditic tree to start flowering…