An essay was conducted to

evaluate the feasibility of implementing the use of natural

groundcover in papaya (Carica papaya L.) under a ridge

planting system. The objective was to establish a weed-free

zone on the ridge area to allow the placement of fertilizer

close to the root systems, thus avoiding competition between

the roots of the papaya and those of the groundcover. Four

herbicides were used (acetachlor, pendimethaline, oxyfluorfen

and glyphosate) to asses their control of cyperous, broadleaf

and grass weeds. Possible damage to papaya plants due to the

effect of the herbicides was also monitored as well and their

response in terms of growth and yield. Glyphosate was

efficient for gramineous weed control but not against

broadleaves. Very good control for all weed types was

obtained during the 90 day post-transplant period with the

oxyfluorfen + pendimethaline and acetachlor treatments. The

first two herbicides affected papaya plants slightly when they

were applied 10 days after transplant. Acetachlor didn’t cause

any damage to the papaya. There were no differences among

the treatments in regard to growth and yield.

Keywords: Carica papaya, ridge planting, herbicides, fertilization place.