Although the pawpaw is not commonly known these days, it is one of the oldest fruits indigenous to North America, establishing itself on the continent millions of years before the first Native Americans arrived from Asia. It was once a much loved fruit by Native Americans and later European settlers, who named places for it. Today, they are mostly eaten in the most rural parts of the United States, found near riverbanks and in the understory of forests in the Eastern United States.
Even though it is indigenous to what is now the eastern and mid-western regions of the United States, the pawpaw most resembles a tropic fruit in texture and taste.Today, the pawpaw is enjoying a revival, and is available in many commercial nurseries. Kentucky State University is actively working to revive the fruit and more information about its cultivation and uses are available on their website.