The U.S. Botanic Garden Conservatory will close at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, December 6, due to an official government function. The Conservatory will return to normal hours December 7.
Papaya is a luscious, soft tropical fruit from Central and South America. This great source of Vitamin C is eaten ripe, peeled and seeded in most places, although in others, the seeds are eaten along with their gelatinous encasement to combat intestinal parasites. The unripe fruit can be cooked, and has a high amount of pectin for use in jams and jellies. Papaya also contains the enzyme Papain, a useful meat tenderizer, which is also in ointments to treat burns and rashes. The leaves, an effective painkiller, heart tonic and stomach soother, are steamed and eaten. In some parts of Asia, green papaya seeds and fruit are a folk remedy for contraception.