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Author Topic: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?  (Read 736 times)

Miguel.pt

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Hello all,
 
This weekend while visiting my parents I found these beautiful small pithayas there...
fruits seemed ripe so I collected and tasted a few... and they tasted great... all the family enjoyed... I've found these very sweet, sweeter than some other bigger pithayas I've tasted before, and they even leave a nice aftertaste on the mouth that persisted for hours...
 
Moreover the fruits were of a decent size, had no nasty thorns and they peeled very easily... I just see advantages here...
 
Funny thing is that this cactus seats there for as long as I remember (more than 30 years)... my parents always had it just for the nice/big white/yellow flowers...and the only occasion that I remember it to have had fruits was last year that I visited my parents when it had open flowers and I spent sometime hand pollinating several flowers with the pollen of another cactus but it only grew one single fruit... this year it has lots of fruits without any human intervention... I confirmed with my dad and he did nothing... maybe my last year hand pollination efforts triggered something here???
 
Anyone can help me to identify the correct species name?... anyone else knows these type of pithayas?















Luisport

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2013, 04:25:11 PM »
WOW Miguel, i'm extremely impressed! Yummy!!! Another one to the list?  :P :P :P :P :P :P :P :P

plantlover13

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2013, 04:28:18 PM »
Interesting fruit!! no idea what is it, but it looks really cool!
Clarke's first law: When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.

Tim

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2013, 04:40:46 PM »
Epiphyllum sp.
Tim

nullzero

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2013, 05:02:30 PM »
I agree with what Tim said. The fruit is of excellent quality and size for an Epiphyllum sp. It looks like a keeper, I would take cuttings for yourself and save the seeds  ;D.
Grow mainly edible and herbal plants. Favorites are the fruits, vegetables, and tea plants.

rovha

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2013, 05:17:39 PM »
They look really tasty, i wonder how the flowers look.
Joo David Abreu Sousa

Future

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2013, 06:03:53 PM »
Seed offer must follow this find!!  :)

LEOOEL

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2013, 10:35:42 PM »
According to your description, I think that this may by the best quality cactus fruit I've ever heard of. To me it lools like the combination/morphing of a prickly-pear and a dragon-fruit. The fruit production looks adequate.

I guess the next two questions are: (1) Is the production reliable year after year, and (2) will the fruit bearing behavior be the same at other locations (I'm  in Temperature Zone 10b).
'Virtue', learn/teach/propagate it, you'll save others and yourself.

nullzero

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2013, 11:52:30 PM »
According to your description, I think that this may by the best quality cactus fruit I've ever heard of. To me it lools like the combination/morphing of a prickly-pear and a dragon-fruit. The fruit production looks adequate.

I guess the next two questions are: (1) Is the production reliable year after year, and (2) will the fruit bearing behavior be the same at other locations (I'm  in Temperature Zone 10b).

There are many good fruiting cacti, many are overlooked. Cereus sp. are high quality fruit.
Grow mainly edible and herbal plants. Favorites are the fruits, vegetables, and tea plants.

Sven

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2013, 10:40:02 AM »
Yep, it's an epi.  These are grown for their flowers and seem to only set fruit when cross-pollinated with another variety so the fruit is rarely seen.  I suspect something pollinated those flowers, maybe not human, but something.  The interesting thing is they have very nice flavors, unlike dragon fruit, which are just mildly sweet without much flavor.  Years ago Leo Manuel, here in San Diego, was crossing them with dragon fruit (not sure if that was successful) and amongst themselves and I swear one variety produced fruit that tasted just like lychee.  They are easy to grow and easy to find.

http://www.cactus-mall.com/graydavisepies/

Im sure there are plenty of sites like this but I bought some from these guys 10 or 15 years ago.

Cheers,
Sven

phantomcrab

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2013, 12:15:33 PM »
Almost certainly Epiphyllum crenatum from the flower description and the pictures of the plant. It is the only diurnal epiphyllum species. The flowers are sometimes fragrant. It is one of the original parents of the innumerable epiphyllum hybrid cacti.
E. crenatum in my yard:


The sepals usually show more yellow than in this picture. ???
Quote
I guess the next two questions are: (1) Is the production reliable year after year, and (2) will the fruit bearing behavior be the same at other locations (I'm  in Temperature Zone 10b).

Here it blooms reliably every year but does not always set fruit. The flowers do need cross pollination. Grasshoppers, squirrels and birds will get the fruit if not protected. >:(
In my experience the plant can take cold down to 27-28oF but any frost will cause a lot of damage.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2013, 12:40:25 PM by phantomcrab »
Richard

Tim

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2013, 12:54:16 PM »
Something must really like your Agapanthus?  Is that grasshopper or caterpillar damage?


Tim

Miguel.pt

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2013, 04:50:15 PM »
Thank you guys...
 
So I've googled a little further online and now I also believe this one can be an Epiphyllum crenatum, which is a native cactus from Central America (Mxico/Guatemala/Honduras)... As far as I remember the flowers on this one are very similar to what I've seen online (big and white with yellow outer sepals)... next year I will try to take some pics of the flowers.
 
I will also keep a close eye on this one to see if I can understand how to make it fruit reliably... I've seen online that this species needs cross-pollination so my parents should have some other flowering cactus nearby that is working as a pollen source for this one... next year I will try to identify this pollen source too... other thing I have to test is the resistance to my 9a climate winter cold... my parents have at least 9b climate but my conditions up-here are a little bit harsher... but I've read somewhere online that this one can stand -7C so if true I have good hopes here...
 
Hey Sven, if I had to compare this one with other fruits I would also say that Lychee overtones can be detected here... specially the aftertaste it leaves on the mouth reminds me lychees a lot...
 
I have a sweet memory from infancy regarding this cactus... I remember playing to "grocery stores" with my school friends... and on my fake grocery store the "bacalhau" was made from pads of this cactus, that being thornless were safe enough to play with...
 
For those who do not know it let me just explain that the "bacalhau" is the "dried salted cod fish" that is probably the most famous of the Portuguese national dishes... so you should find it for sale in any decent Portuguese grocery.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2013, 01:50:04 AM by Miguel.pt »

phantomcrab

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2013, 05:05:37 PM »
Quote
Something must really like your Agapanthus?  Is that grasshopper or caterpillar damage?




Lubber grasshoppers. Pretty nasty insects that will eat anything, including epiphyllum fruit. That is amaryllis foliage - one of their favorites.
http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/orn/lubber.htm
Richard

phantomcrab

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #14 on: September 24, 2013, 07:05:31 PM »
Quote
but I've read somewhere online that this one can stand -7C so if true I have good hopes here...
Unless it is an exceptional plant, I seriously doubt it could take -7oC (19-20oF) for any length of time. If so, it would have already become naturalized in S. Florida and northward along the coasts.
Richard

LEOOEL

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #15 on: September 24, 2013, 11:19:15 PM »
The search goes on. I'm still waiting for the day when someone comments something like this:

Here's a fast growing cacti that has reliable yearly, heavy production of good size, sweet, quality fruit ... IN YOUR FACE!  ;D
'Virtue', learn/teach/propagate it, you'll save others and yourself.

Tao2

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #16 on: September 25, 2013, 04:15:11 AM »
maybe a neighbour has some epi's growing that's its cross pollinated with......its needs a friend...........to ensure a regular fruit supply....................I hope you saved some seed from it.................it could be a very interesting hybrid...................certainly a good size fruit for an epi hybrid..........and really worth propagating some cuttings..........nice

Tao2

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #17 on: September 25, 2013, 06:16:50 AM »

Epiphyllum crenatum



Tao2

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Re: Found cactus with good/tasty fruits... please help to identify the species?
« Reply #18 on: September 25, 2013, 08:44:14 AM »
Epiphyllum crenatum is a species of cactus and one of the most important parents in creating the Epiphyllum-hybrids commonly cultivated throughout the world....................so it could probably cross pollinate with a epi hybrid..........?............ It is cultivated for its beautiful diurnal flowers. It is found naturally from Mexico (Oaxaca & Chiapas) to Honduras. It is epiphytic (grows upon another plant) or lithophytic (grows on rocks) in moist or wet forests, sometimes in oak forests (1.750 m alt. or less).

It is an easily cultivated, fast growing epiphyte. Needs compost containing plenty of humus and sufficient moisture in summer. Should not be kept under 12C in winter. Can be grown in semi-shade or full sun. Extra light in the early spring will stimulate budding. Flowers in late spring or early summer.

 

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