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Dragonfruit?
MadDogMike
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 7073
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 2010-01-02 1:09 pm   Permalink

Anyone have any experience with Dragonfruit (Hylocereus undatus) also known as Pitaya, either growing or eating? A tropical cactus native to Central and South America, now growing in Hawaii, Vietnam and other tropical areas. They had them at my Lowe's so I bought one and planted it in the back yard - we'll see if it tolerates the desert heat.







 
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lucas vigor
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Joined: May 12, 2004
Posts: 3985
From: SOCAL
Posted: 2010-01-02 1:59 pm   Permalink

They make milkshakes out of them here in Little Saigon.

 
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Tiki Kaimuki
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 25, 2006
Posts: 821
From: OAKLAND, baby
Posted: 2010-01-02 3:52 pm   Permalink

At the mai tai competition this past summer in Hawaii, some of the contestants did some magical things with dragonfruit. Of course these were all hybrid style "mai tais". One of the bartenders hollowed one out and either used it as a lid or a cup? I was sampling a lot so my memory is rum muddled. Either way it was a beautiful presentation.
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VampiressRN
Grand Member (7 years)  

Joined: Nov 23, 2006
Posts: 5506
From: Sin City Lincoln Hills (NorCal)
Posted: 2010-01-02 6:23 pm   Permalink

If nothing else, they are an absolutely beautiful decoration. They look fabulous cut up and displayed along with other exotic fruits. Glad you started this thread, I would be interested in the culinary options.
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lucas vigor
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Joined: May 12, 2004
Posts: 3985
From: SOCAL
Posted: 2010-01-03 08:05 am   Permalink

I imagine they would be really good in a Daquiri (like they sometimes make with cactus fruits)

 
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Unga Bunga
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Joined: Jun 06, 2003
Posts: 5792
From: CaliTikifornia
Posted: 2010-01-03 12:27 pm   Permalink

Here is a great article on it:
A million farmers come out of poverty

If this part was true, I'm sure we would have heard about it years ago...

Medicinal value:
It is now known that the Red Indians had secretly guarded their knowledge of the medicinal value of the dragon tree. Dr. Thilak Ranasinghe, director of Agriculture for the western province believes claims were made outside Sri Lanka that its pulp is antioxidant, prevents colon cancer and diabetes and even helps produce insulin among such impaired.

Dragon fruit, neutralises toxic substances as heavy metals, reduces colostral and high blood pressure, controls high sugar levels, prevents cancer and bleeding and promotes health. Eaten regularly, it controls Asthma and cough.



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The Gnomon
Grand Member (7 years)  

Joined: May 01, 2007
Posts: 1289
From: MD-DC-VA
Posted: 2010-01-06 4:09 pm   Permalink



The kind I can get here every so often (@7.99 each!) is white dragonfruit like the picture. I would prefer to get red dragonfruit.

In any event, the fruit has suprisingly little flavor for something that you'd expect might blow your socks off without removing your shoes.

It has edible seeds like kiwis, but lots more of them. It spoons up like a papaya or melon. It is kind of strange eating a fruit that has texture like a soft melon, but practically no flavor. I find that you have to combine it with other things for a flavor component. I still like them for all of their medicinal value and they do look fantastic. Just wait until you spoon yourself a mouthful. All texture and no flavor.


[ This Message was edited by: The Gnomon 2010-01-06 20:07 ]


 
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twitch
Grand Member (7 years)  

Joined: May 12, 2006
Posts: 423
From: Vacant lot where T. Vic's, Van. was
Posted: 2010-01-06 7:21 pm   Permalink

I've had the white variety. As said, hardly any flavour!
Looks incredible, tastes like stream-water. I've noticed that a lot of wild-looking exotic fruit seems to trade off looks for what's underneath.
Pretty damn superficial, if ya ask me.


 
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MadDogMike
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 7073
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 2010-01-06 9:11 pm   Permalink

Thank you all for your input Mine is the red variety, even if it has no taste at least it will add color to a tropical fruit salad. I think it will be a while before I have to worry about fruit- it's still pretty small and we'll see if it even survives the 120 degree summer. Here it is tied to a 4 foot, burlap wrapped railroad tie.





 
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Haole'akamai
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Joined: Jul 07, 2005
Posts: 2270
From: The Polynesian Port of NOLA
Posted: 2010-01-06 10:49 pm   Permalink

Dave's Garden has it listed as hardy in Zones 10a, 10b, & 11: http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/161292/ and that they have been successfully grown in regions of Arizona. It's a succulent, so it should do fine in the high temp heat of Summer, especially since you're giving it several months to take root. Good Luck!
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MadDogMike
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 7073
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 2010-05-20 1:30 pm   Permalink

Progress Report - After almost 6 months my Dragonfruit is still alive, I think that's a record!!! It was starting to get a little sunburned (yellow) in the hot desert sun so I gave it an umbrella today. Still no fruit




 
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lucas vigor
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 12, 2004
Posts: 3985
From: SOCAL
Posted: 2010-05-20 6:54 pm   Permalink

At least it's thriving!

 
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MadDogMike
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 7073
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 2010-07-14 9:43 pm   Permalink

Robert Irving was given Dragonfruit to cook with on tonight's episode of Dinner Impossible. He said "It taste like - nothing!"

 
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The Gnomon
Grand Member (7 years)  

Joined: May 01, 2007
Posts: 1289
From: MD-DC-VA
Posted: 2010-07-16 6:29 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2010-07-14 21:43, MadDogMike wrote:
Robert Irving was given Dragonfruit to cook with on tonight's episode of Dinner Impossible. He said "It taste like - nothing!"



Anyone who has ever had any would not vigorously dispute that it is more flavorful than water or air.


 
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MadDogMike
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Mar 30, 2008
Posts: 7073
From: The Anvil of the Sun
Posted: 2012-05-12 10:55 am   Permalink

Well, after 2 1/2 years my dragonfruit is still growing new branches (or whatever you call those things on a cactus) but still nothing that resembles a flower or bud


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