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Author Topic: Dragon Fruit thread.  (Read 486442 times)

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #800 on: August 22, 2014, 02:02:25 AM »
My friend over on Project Pitaya on Facebook posted this picture of Dragon Fruit flowers:


ClayMango

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #801 on: August 23, 2014, 10:44:00 PM »
Dragon Fruit Noob here...

I tasted my first Southern Ca grown Dragon Fruit....holy cow!!!!! destroyed my original impression of the one I ate form the Asian Markets.....

Anyone care to mention some top 5 Dragon fruits that I can squeeze along the fence line....this is definitely a must have fruit!!!!!
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ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #802 on: August 23, 2014, 11:17:04 PM »
Dragon Fruit Noob here...

I tasted my first Southern Ca grown Dragon Fruit....holy cow!!!!! destroyed my original impression of the one I ate form the Asian Markets.....

Anyone care to mention some top 5 Dragon fruits that I can squeeze along the fence line....this is definitely a must have fruit!!!!!


Do you want my favorites?  Or somebody else?  ;D

Taste depends on the individual.  For example: Today at the 2014 Pitahaya Dragon Fruit Festival, my CRFG friend and I decided that the new El Grullo variety (originally from Mexico) was the worst tasting variety we tasted today. I met two other participants who said it was their favorite.  :-\

To get an idea of a "group's" favorite tasting varieties; scroll down to near the end of the following 2007 Specialty Crops Conference PowerPoint presentation:
http://cesandiego.ucdavis.edu/files/55065.pdf

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #803 on: August 23, 2014, 11:43:13 PM »
The latest Dragon Fruit Variety Evaluation Chart I picked up at today's University of California Cooperative Extension Pitahaya Dragon Fruit Festival:


LEOOEL

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #804 on: August 24, 2014, 12:51:53 AM »
Informative DF variety list.

Although on the smallish side, the winners, as far as sweet taste goes, is the 'Colombiana' and the 'Yellow Dragon.' Surprisingly, both are of the yellow variety. According to the chart, these varieties unfortunately do not tolerate well extreme temperatures of  heat and cold. Nevertheless, in locations where these temperature extremes are uncommon, they may turn out to be must have varieties for those of us who love to grow this fruit.

These two varieties appear to be great candidates for further development/improvement; either by planting their seeds to arrive at better selections; or crossing them with other varieties like 'American Beauty,' 'Delight,' or 'El Grullo;' or by more scientifically inclined means like improving their characteristics by the noble technique of using bacteria to appropriately and safely change the DF variety's genetic makeup; or by selecting the best candidate from a group of potential candidates, after their genetic makeup has been randomly altered from being bombarded with 'photons' shot from a special type of 'gun.'

It's great to see things moving in the right direction in the DF industry. It appears that as a result of these DF variety comparisons of their characteristics, this will lead to new and improved varieties, bringing us closer to the day when a DF of high quality sweet taste will be available to the general public.
'Virtue' should be taught, learned and propagated, in order to save others and oneself.

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #805 on: August 24, 2014, 01:31:33 AM »
Informative DF variety list.

Although on the smallish side, the winners, as far as sweet taste goes, is the 'Colombiana' and the 'Yellow Dragon.' Surprisingly, both are of the yellow variety. According to the chart, these varieties unfortunately do not tolerate well extreme temperatures of  heat and cold. Nevertheless, in locations where these temperature extremes are uncommon, they may turn out to be must have varieties for those of us who love to grow this fruit.

These two varieties appear to be great candidates for further development/improvement; either by planting their seeds to arrive at better selections; or crossing them with other varieties like 'American Beauty,' 'Delight,' or 'El Grullo;' or by more scientifically inclined means like improving their characteristics by the noble technique of using bacteria to appropriately and safely change the DF variety's genetic makeup; or by selecting the best candidate from a group of potential candidates, after their genetic makeup has been randomly altered from being bombarded with 'photons' shot from a special type of 'gun.'

It's great to see things moving in the right direction in the DF industry. It appears that as a result of these DF variety comparisons of their characteristics, this will lead to new and improved varieties, bringing us closer to the day when a DF of high quality sweet taste will be available to the general public.

LEOOEL,
I know that you are a big fan of of the Yellow Dragon Fruit from Colombia, but not all the experts agree that it is the best candidate for commercial growers.

At today's Pitahaya Dragon Fruit Festival the experts and the University doing research for commercial growers rate the following order of priority for new commercial varieties:
#1 - self-fertile
#2 - harder skin
#3 - taste

The problems mentioned for the Yellow Dragon Fruit are; thorns, lack of color (red skin & red flesh preferred), small fruit, long time for fruit to ripen (6 months compared to 30 days), in addition to the low tolerance to low & high temperatures.

You also can't assume that a higher BRIX score will always taste sweeter. Yes, the Yellow Dragon fruit is the sweetest tasting, but the red flesh (small fruit) Sugar Dragon (Thomson S-8) in some taste tests has beat the Yellow variety. With some of the other varieties with high BRIX scores, higher acid taste lowers the taste preference for some people.

I have never heard anybody mention using bacteria to change Dragon Fruit's genetic makeup.  The experts doing research on new varieties do it the old fashion way by cross pollination and growing the seeds to maturity and then evaluating the fruit.


F.Y.I.  At today's Pitahaya Dragon Fruit Festival it was mentioned that Florida is the BEST state for growing Dragon Fruit in the U.S.  :o
« Last Edit: August 24, 2014, 01:42:17 AM by ricshaw »

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #806 on: August 24, 2014, 01:54:05 AM »
The latest Dragon Fruit Variety Evaluation Chart I picked up at today's University of California Cooperative Extension Pitahaya Dragon Fruit Festival:




The DNA test results are in for the above varieties:




ClayMango

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #807 on: August 24, 2014, 02:26:17 AM »
Thank you so much for giving me the inside scoop on the different cultivars...I had no idea Dragon Fruit had such a great following.


Are any of the nurseries in Socal selling these top tier varieties?
Thinking about joining a Fruitaholics anonymous support group...Fruit addiction has taken over my life!

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #808 on: August 24, 2014, 11:26:23 AM »
Thank you so much for giving me the inside scoop on the different cultivars...I had no idea Dragon Fruit had such a great following.

Are any of the nurseries in Socal selling these top tier varieties?




MattsLandscape.com

fyliu

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #809 on: August 24, 2014, 04:18:51 PM »
I preferred valdivia roja when I first got into DF. I'm still waiting for my own plant to fruit.
The American beauty bunch is pretty sweet at 18 brix. 16-18 brix is the point where tart goes to sweet for DF.
The Halleys comet bunch is good too. But you would want to get a plain Vietnamese white self-fertile for pollen and just to have some fruit to cheer you up if you forget or are too busy to pollinate.

ClayMango

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #810 on: August 24, 2014, 04:33:56 PM »
Seems they only have cuttings available for all the top tier varieties.... Noob here lol...is this something that I must graft? or can this be planted in the ground?
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wslau

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #811 on: August 24, 2014, 04:39:03 PM »
Seems they only have cuttings available for all the top tier varieties.... Noob here lol...is this something that I must graft? or can this be planted in the ground?

Clay,
Just plant cuttings into the ground (pots are better) with a support stick/trellis...no grafting required!
What you have to watch out for are pitayas grown from seeds, as these will not be truly identical to the parent...from what I recall.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2014, 04:43:40 PM by wslau »
Warren

fyliu

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #812 on: August 24, 2014, 06:21:15 PM »
Yeah, seeds will be different from the parent.

Be sure to use a porous mix for soil. The roots are not evolved to dig into soil but rather to drape over branches in the top canopy of a rainforest. This may not be absolutely true but it's what I keep in mind when deciding what soil to use.
I tried regular garden soil and the plant just grows very slowly and roots are an inch long after 2 years.

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #813 on: August 24, 2014, 06:39:54 PM »
Be sure to use a porous mix for soil. The roots are not evolved to dig into soil but rather to drape over branches in the top canopy of a rainforest. This may not be absolutely true but it's what I keep in mind when deciding what soil to use.
I tried regular garden soil and the plant just grows very slowly and roots are an inch long after 2 years.

It is important to know that Dragon Fruit cactus is not a desert cactus and likes a potting soil with more compost than a "cactus mix". I have rooted cuttings, after they have set for 2 weeks, in a cup with about 1/4 - 1/2 inch of water. Once DF starts growing in soil, it requires more water than desert cactus.

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #814 on: August 24, 2014, 10:51:54 PM »
Each seedling is a new Dragon Fruit variety.

The young plants will be grown to maturity and then the fruit evaluated.





Research is being done by Edgar Valdivia.

Note:  The two parent varieties are two of the more popular DF varieties.

Rannman

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #815 on: August 25, 2014, 12:07:21 AM »
Are they Frankies Red x Condor seedlings as it says on the jar. Should be a great cross if that's right. I've never seen seedlings grown like that. I chose the strongest 50+ seedlings and put them straight into small pots, then heaps of Sun. Doesn't seem to worry them at all. Just like these ones that are almost 4 months old. These are Pink Diamond cross with a wild,extra sweet white.


marklee

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #816 on: August 25, 2014, 12:11:08 AM »
I preferred valdivia roja when I first got into DF. I'm still waiting for my own plant to fruit.
The American beauty bunch is pretty sweet at 18 brix. 16-18 brix is the point where tart goes to sweet for DF.
The Halleys comet bunch is good too. But you would want to get a plain Vietnamese white self-fertile for pollen and just to have some fruit to cheer you up if you forget or are too busy to pollinate.
Fang, I have had my Valdivia Roja in the ground for about 7 years, I can only get fruit if I use pollen from a different variety, but it is one of the tastiest and prettiest varieties. It is from Mexico and Edgar Valdivia did not develop it if anyone was wondering.
Mark

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #817 on: August 25, 2014, 02:04:04 AM »
Are they Frankies Red x Condor seedlings as it says on the jar. Should be a great cross if that's right.

Yes    :)


I preferred valdivia roja when I first got into DF. I'm still waiting for my own plant to fruit.
The American beauty bunch is pretty sweet at 18 brix. 16-18 brix is the point where tart goes to sweet for DF.
The Halleys comet bunch is good too. But you would want to get a plain Vietnamese white self-fertile for pollen and just to have some fruit to cheer you up if you forget or are too busy to pollinate.

You are right.  I have both, but I am mainly growing Delight (Thomson 3-S) and Halley's Comet (closely related).

This year my goal was to get some Vietnamese white self-fertile. I got Vietnamese White, Vietnamese Giant, and Mexicana cuttings.

fyliu

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #818 on: August 25, 2014, 02:17:29 AM »
I preferred valdivia roja when I first got into DF. I'm still waiting for my own plant to fruit.
The American beauty bunch is pretty sweet at 18 brix. 16-18 brix is the point where tart goes to sweet for DF.
The Halleys comet bunch is good too. But you would want to get a plain Vietnamese white self-fertile for pollen and just to have some fruit to cheer you up if you forget or are too busy to pollinate.
Fang, I have had my Valdivia Roja in the ground for about 7 years, I can only get fruit if I use pollen from a different variety, but it is one of the tastiest and prettiest varieties. It is from Mexico and Edgar Valdivia did not develop it if anyone was wondering.
Mark
Thanks for the information. I got the cutting at the last one I attended, maybe 3-4 years ago. It flowered this year but I didn't pollinate and it dropped.
Ramiro doesn't pollinate but some animals (bats?) there do pollinate and he does get fruits.

Richard, I actually didn't get the white self-fertile either and went for the better tasting ones. Good thing the Arizona Purple seems to be self-fruiting when everything else is not. But I personally don't like the taste of it. It tastes a little metallic to me while other people really like it.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 02:24:32 AM by fyliu »

starling1

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #819 on: August 25, 2014, 03:38:34 AM »
Are they Frankies Red x Condor seedlings as it says on the jar. Should be a great cross if that's right.

Yes    :)


I preferred valdivia roja when I first got into DF. I'm still waiting for my own plant to fruit.
The American beauty bunch is pretty sweet at 18 brix. 16-18 brix is the point where tart goes to sweet for DF.
The Halleys comet bunch is good too. But you would want to get a plain Vietnamese white self-fertile for pollen and just to have some fruit to cheer you up if you forget or are too busy to pollinate.

You are right.  I have both, but I am mainly growing Delight (Thomson 3-S) and Halley's Comet (closely related).

This year my goal was to get some Vietnamese white self-fertile. I got Vietnamese White, Vietnamese Giant, and Mexicana cuttings.

I'll register my interest in a cutting or small rooted plant early Ric. Can never get enough dragon CV's.

Make sure you give them a name!

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #820 on: August 25, 2014, 08:53:38 AM »
I got a cutting that I recently potted. The cutting seems to keep developing a fruit.... Should i rip it off so it doesnt affect the rooting and development of the cutting? Or there is no problem in leaving it on?

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #821 on: August 25, 2014, 12:35:32 PM »
Thanks for the information. I got the cutting at the last one I attended, maybe 3-4 years ago. It flowered this year but I didn't pollinate and it dropped.
Ramiro doesn't pollinate but some animals (bats?) there do pollinate and he does get fruits.
Richard, I actually didn't get the white self-fertile either and went for the better tasting ones. Good thing the Arizona Purple seems to be self-fruiting when everything else is not. But I personally don't like the taste of it. It tastes a little metallic to me while other people really like it.

I did the same thing... started with a couple of varieties I liked the best.

Here is the dirty little secret that many of us did not know when we started:
At the Irvine Pitahaya research center, the 20 DF varieties are planted 3 of the same variety together in a row, randomly repeated, in every row in the test field.
At any given time, there are flowers opening from several different varieties. Bees do most of the pollinating. Hand pollination would increase the yield, but is not practical for commercial growers, which is what the research center is geared towards.

Hobbyist growers like me plant a couple of varieties we like best (most likely NOT self-fertle). When the flowers open on one variety, we may not have a good compatible pollinator available for pollination. So we have issues with pollination. Another thing I found out is although you can pollinate flowers the next morning, it is better to collect pollen for hand pollination the night before.

The advice for noobs starting out is to FIRST plant a self-fertile Vietnamese variety. That way they will have a good source for pollen when the varieties they like flower.

ClayMango

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #822 on: August 25, 2014, 04:29:57 PM »
Thank you so much for giving me the inside scoop on the different cultivars...I had no idea Dragon Fruit had such a great following.

Are any of the nurseries in Socal selling these top tier varieties?




MattsLandscape.com



IM SO EXCITED!!!! Matts Landscape/Epic-Cacti Nursery is located right next door to me in Fallbrook... He has several top tier Dragon Fruit cutting that I'm looking at picking up this weekend.. These are my picks as of now based on color of flesh and flavor reviews.

Rosa
Sin Espina
Cebra
and a toss up between Mexican and Delight...both have the pretty pink n white flesh but Delight is much more higher on the Brix lvl.
Thinking about joining a Fruitaholics anonymous support group...Fruit addiction has taken over my life!

ricshaw

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #823 on: August 25, 2014, 06:58:17 PM »
Dirty little secret #2:

"self pollinating" does not mean "self-fertile"

When you see a nursery advertise a Dragon Fruit is "self pollinating", do not assume that you can pollinate its flower with its own pollen (or pollen from its clone).

nullzero

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Re: Dragon Fruit thread.
« Reply #824 on: August 25, 2014, 07:03:45 PM »
Thank you so much for giving me the inside scoop on the different cultivars...I had no idea Dragon Fruit had such a great following.

Are any of the nurseries in Socal selling these top tier varieties?




MattsLandscape.com



IM SO EXCITED!!!! Matts Landscape/Epic-Cacti Nursery is located right next door to me in Fallbrook... He has several top tier Dragon Fruit cutting that I'm looking at picking up this weekend.. These are my picks as of now based on color of flesh and flavor reviews.

Rosa
Sin Espina
Cebra
and a toss up between Mexican and Delight...both have the pretty pink n white flesh but Delight is much more higher on the Brix lvl.


Clay,

See if he has Condor, I have heard good things about it. Lucky you get to tour his nursery, he has an excellent collection of fruiting and flowering cacti. Should ask him if he has any good tasting Epi cacti for sale :).
Grow mainly fruits, vegetables, and herbs.

 

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