Good Food and Low Cover 

Pawpaw- Asimina triloba


Shrub or tree, 9 to 36 feet tall. 


Smooth, gray, twigs with rusty hairs. 


Deciduous, alternate, simple, smooth edged, obovate, 6 to 12 inches long, up to six inches wide, green in summer, dull yellow in autumn. Leaves fall early in autumn. 


 March to April. Axillary, 1 to 2 inches across, dull purple. 


September to October. A pulpy berry, 1 ¼ to 6 inches long, 1 to 2 inches thick, sweet aromatic, edible, brown when ripe. Contains large flattened seeds. 

WV Range

All counties except the high elevations. Especially abundant in the Ohio and Potomac Valleys . 

Natural Habitat

Moist rich alluvial woods. 

Wildlife Use

 Fruits eaten by raccoons and other mammals including opossums, squirrels, foxes and skunks. 


Uses: Individual specimens or naturalizing along streams. Light: Partial shade to full sun. Soil Moisture: Moist. Soil pH: Acid to neutral. Problems: Difficult to transplant when large. Move when less than 6 feet tall. Suckers from the roots and may need to be controlled if used as a specimen plant. 

Compiled by: Joseph Glencoe, Professor of Biology, West Virginia Wesleyan College , Buckhannon , West Virginia (now deceased) 

Written by West Virginia Native Plant Society members and jointly published with the WV Wildlife Diversity Program.