Nature’s Notebook

Connecting People with Nature to Benefit Our Changing Planet

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The pawpaw tree yields the largest fruit native to the United States.

Image credit:
US Agricultural Research Service

Welcome to Nature's Notebook, North American Pawpaw Growers!

Background

The North American Pawpaw Growers Association (NAPGA) is partnering with The USA National Phenology Network (USA-NPN) to provide an online database to encourage phenological monitoring of pawpaws in North America. The systematic collection of standardized ground observations by researchers, students and volunteers will:

  • Increase awareness and knowledge of the North American pawpaw
  • Track changes in the distribution and life stages of North American pawpaws in response to climate and weather changes
  • Provide a multi-year varietal study to improve yield, flavor, and storage characteristics of North American pawpaws
  • Generate a long-term dataset that can be used for scientific discovery and decision making

Join us!

How to participate

To participate in our pawpaw monitoring program with your group or school:

  1. Join Nature's Notebook. Create a Nature's Notebook account online. During the registration process, be sure to check the box next to "North American Pawpaw Growers Association" under the "Partner Groups" section.
  2. Send an email to Charles Hoy to indicate your interest.  Once he receives your email, he will grant you administrative privledges for the group and provide further instructions on how to add your site to the NAPGA group.  
  3. Select your trees. Identify one or more individual pawpaw (Asimina triloba) trees to track. You will make observations on this plant or plants repeatedly through the growing season, so make sure it is conveniently located. You may find this pawpaw phenophase photo guide a useful supplement to identifying pawpaws and their phenophases. 
  4. Observe your plant(s). We ask that you:
    • Observe your tree(s) 2-4 times a week, especially in the spring and fall, when things are changing rapidly. However, we welcome any observations you can contribute - such as once a week during the rest of the year.
    • Collect observations using a paper datasheet or via smartphone apps. If you use paper datasheets, you'll need to periodically log into your Nature's Notebook account online and enter the data you recorded so that it can be shared with our researchers. Smartphone apps are available for both Android and iPhone platforms, and will collect observations even if you are offline or out of range. Data will be automatically uploaded once you move back into cell or wifi range.

For more information and specific details on making observations in Nature's Notebook, see the Learn How to Observe page. 

Curriculum and Observation Resources for School Groups

You may find the following resources helpful as you begin observing pawpaws with your classroom:

  1. Short webinar on how to join Nature's Notebook and the North American Pawpaw Growers Association Group
  2. General Nature's Notebook Curricula can be found on our Education page. Select the age group you are working with to obtain more information, or click on the Nature's Notebook Curriculum Resources page to search.  
  3. View all of our recorded How to Webinars on our Webinar Archive and How to Observe YouTube page