Did you know that the only tropical fruit native to Michigan gave a small town its name?

Many of us born and raised Michiganders have some how gone a lifetime never hearing of this mango like fruit.  In fact, I was born in Paw Paw and I just stumbled upon pawpaws yesterday.  Pawpaws were easy to find in Van Buren County back in the day according to pfcmarkets.com,

...they were once so abundant in SW Michigan that the town of Paw Paw is named after them. They are an understory tree only growing to around 35 feet tall, but with broad simple leaves that range from 10-12 inches long by 4-6 inches wide.

The pawpaw is green on the outside and yellow on the inside.  If you like bananas and mangos you will love this tropical fruit.

Annarbor.com tells us why this very sweet fruit is so hard to find,

...pawpaws are so perishable and their season (usually in October in our area) is so short that it's rare to find them, even at a farmers' market.

Maybe you've heard of pawpaws by one of their aliases: Michigan banana, false banana, pawpaw apple, poor man's banana or the white plum.

You can still find pawpaw trees along creeks and roadsides in Paw Paw, Lawrence and Bangor.

Have you ever had a pawpaw?