Keinabbu (Carica papaya - Caricaceae)

Description: Keinabbu is a large herb (non-woody plant) referred to in English as "papaya," which is also part of its scientific name. Keinabbu grows quickly from seed and is spread by humans or animals. It reaches heights of 2-5 m (5-25 ft) and has a gradually tapering trunk and light-colored bark. Its sap is very caustic and milky. The broad leaves clustered at the top of the plant are smooth, deeply lobed, and up to 50 cm (2 ft) wide. The flowers are five-petaled, creamy white, and fragrant. The large, grooved, edible fruit is yellow.
Uses: The fruit pulp of Keinabbu is sweet, tasty, and nutritious containing calcium, natural sugars, and vitamins A and C. Sometimes the hollow leaf stems are used as smoking pipes.
Distribution: Keinabbu is native to tropical America and probably arrived in the Marshall Islands only after early European contact in the 19th century.

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