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Dragon Fruit Finally?

New Iberia, LA

This thing has stuck me and scratched me for two years not counting a puncture in the greenhouse film. I have 7 of these flower looking things that have sprouted over the last week or two. How long does it take to produce fruit from this stage? Honestly I had decided not to put it back in the greenhouse this year so please tell me if the fruit are worth the pain and greenhouse space?
Oldude

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Saint Petersburg, FL

I can't tell you how long it takes to for the fruit to ripen, but I can tell you that you'll want to hand pollinate the flowers, and that yes, the fruit are definitely worth it!

New Iberia, LA

Thanks Carolyn
I am about 5-6 weeks away from our earliest frost so I will need to decide if it is really worth putting up with this thing for seven fruit. My reasoning is that I can grow 4 tomatoes in hydroponics or one banana plant in the same area space that this thing occupies. I am in zone 9 and it may survive if planted against a south wall but it has grown into a large plant. Hand pollinating has not been my strong point, since I have failed at pimping a Pomegranate tree last year .On a scale of 0-10 as far as taste goes, where would you place the taste of a Dragon fruit? I hate to put you on the spot but it is not better tasting than a tomato or banana then it is homeless. It is the Yellow Dragon Fruit Selenicereus megalanthus.
Oldude

Saint Petersburg, FL

Hmmm....it will probably survive against a south wall in zone 9.

I've never been really good at home grown tomatoes (too hot here mostly), so I can't compare there. It beats the heck out of super market tomatoes, but those are tasteless and mushy, so not really fair.

I do grow bananas, and the dragon fruit is on a par with them, but a completely different taste. Not a strong flavor, but sweet and very refreshing. Home grown dragon fruit are far superior to the ratty samples one finds in the stores. I've never had the yellow variety, but Pine Island Nursery rates its flavor as excellent, and they should know.

I'm not a pro at hand pollinating either, since mostly, the bees do it for me. However, the dragon fruit blooms at night, and I'm rather short on bats. I understand these are very easy to hand pollinate. If it were me, I'd give it a go, and if I had to choose between saving one of my bananas or a dragon fruit, I'd go with a dragon fruit, probably (except for my ae ae). More expensive to replace, and the fruit is harder to come by.

Christiansted, VI(Zone 11)

Yours is supposed to be quite sweet and nice.

Pollinating is easy enough if you can reach the big flowers, they open right after sunset.

OK, have fun when you can,

Melissa

New Iberia, LA

I have got to say that I was stopped in my tracks early this morning when I saw this.
Oldude

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New Iberia, LA

What a beauty! It may have a home after all.

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Saint Petersburg, FL

Absolutely lovely.

Now get out there with that paintbrush, and pimp away!

Mulberry, FL

Carolyn I really like the Ae Ae banana plants too just the looks have plenty of banana plants here for the fruit. But the best price i have seen is around 150 no way. I'll wait sooner or later the price will come down

Navarre, FL(Zone 8b)

So what does your Dragonfruit look like now? I have 2 plants but they're still too small for fruit.

New Iberia, LA

Out of the 7 flowers, I was only able to pollinate three. These three are doing well but I donít have a clue as to how long it will take to produce ripe fruit or how to tell when the fruit is ripe. The flowers have dried up and the fruit about the size of an egg is growing near the limb of the plant. The un-pollinated fruit and flowers just fell off.
Oldude

Mulberry, FL

They get about the size of a decent orange I have red and white you up for a trade would like a peice of yellow.

New Iberia, LA

Sure. PM me and we can work out the details.
Oldude

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