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Ate my first dragon fruit today. Where can you grow these?

Ate my first dragon fruit today. Where can you grow these?

I had dragon fruit today for the first time, it's definitely an interesting looking plant! Are these hardy to cold? Possibly growable in Northern Florida (low ~22F) or Zone 10 of Northern California?

The following thread was started by kyle on October 25, 2007 at 3:29 pm PST


There grow here in California Zone 9B

They do well in Contra Costa County, California Zone 9B. You might have to cover them on really chilly nights.

The above followup was added by Merbert on October 25, 2007 at 4:21 pm PST.


If its 22F every year-too cold...

They should be worth a try even in Jacksonville. A few mild winters in a row and they could bare fruit. You have the spring to fall that's perfect. This year Kyle has been so cool in the bay area my neighbors only have one fruit off a virtual hedge of Dragon plants.

And Merbert-their plant is a flowering plant not Jakfruit. My wife talked to them. She couldn't remember what flowering plant they told her.

The above followup was added by Stan on October 25, 2007 at 4:25 pm PST.


Michelia alba, I'll bet

Stan, I'll put a nickel on a bet that the plant is a Michelia alba or M. champaca var. alba. I saw one blooming last week in San Jose. Mine is too small to bloom yet although my M. figo is budding again. Even the patchouli is ready to bloom.

The above followup was added by Merbert on October 25, 2007 at 4:41 pm PST.


dragon fruit taste test winners

At the Pitaya Festival this summer in Irvine CA, some generic and double-blind taste tests were held.

The favorite was two cultivars of Hylocereus guatemalensis -- one of which is sold as "American Beauty".

In third place, for folks that like sweet but complex flavors, a hybrid:
Hylocereus polyrhizus X H. undatus
sold commercially as "Physical Graffiti". This is a very robust plant, taking the mid-summer heat at the Irvine Field Station.

The Hylocereus species are a cactus that grows like a vine (imagine Christmas cactus on steroids) in the Yucatan.

The above followup was added by Richard Frost on October 25, 2007 at 10:58 pm PST.


Not in MoooDesto

I had a real nice dragon fruit cactus that I picked up at Menlo Growers last year...
I planted it up against my house on the east side..
Grew beautifully last summer. Reaching 12 ft x 8 ft in in one season.

Then the freeze of last summer... froze it dead at 23f...( probably around 28f where it was )
And that was up against my house... under the eve.... A plumeria in the ground.. next to it was un damaged.

I won't waste my time trying it again... even though it may come back from a mild freeze.... I am glad that it froze before it got to big.. what a pain to remove all that mush.

Jeff

The above followup was added by Jeff on October 26, 2007 at 0:19 am PST.


Saw dragonfruit in Ranch 99 last night

Saw white dragon fruits for sale last night at ranch 99 in milpitas. It was 5.99/lb. I didn't buy it.

The above followup was added by Tony on October 26, 2007 at 10:17 am PST.


Store bought dragon fruit sucks

Tastes like cardboard, I've always wondered why people want to grow it, it's mostly show. Then I tasted some home grown cultivars in Socal, and I was impressed.

I've got several varieties growing in my garden, they haven't had a single trace of frost burn in the last 10 years, but constant transplanting has made them very unhappy. Alas, I have to do it once more.

The above followup was added by Axel on October 26, 2007 at 11:11 am PST.


I have found some seedlings and varieties are a bit hardier then others and some taste better too.

I had one seedlings live and grow from a batch of seeds a few years ago. I started some more, more lived past sprouting this time, but lost all of them under my back patio roof, except the one which survived the from the first year I started them from seed. All plants were the same size, but this one survived long nights of freezing temps with lows around 26/27F. Don't think it would of survived the all night freezes and down to 21F they would of gotten this last January; brought it in from the cold.

What was amazing was I had left a Spring cactus out under the shade plant area, and it survived without a hit of damage, was similar to the regular Christmas cactus.

It is more of a novelty in this area, and can see Jeff's reasoning, under his plant survival guidelines.

Not sure why I have it, and then I need to take better care of them, some get too much sun and most don't get enough, and I need to build a trellis for them, so they can grow right and fruit.

I do have ornamental impulsive flashes. A few years ago, I ordered specially collected Bangalow, King Palm seeds in from Australia. Two two years ago I did some ebay bidding and got 3 or 4 lots of somewhat fancy plumerias seeds.

This year I was at Monterey Bay Nursery again and noticed the Clivia bulb plants flowering again, really love their look. But this time I realized that they are somewhat hardy and take the Central Valley cold. So got a couple plants, but was not happy with that. I went to ebay and discovered some prime WOW, high class seeds crosses had just come up for auction, well I spent somewhere around $100 plus on 4 lots of seeds, getting around 25 plus seeds, and of now, almost all have sprouted and have little plants, except for a couple and hopefully they will soon also but popping up. Hope to get some real nice colors; one lot even has variegated striped leaves, that I don't remember being part of the description, but is a real plus.

David

The above followup was added by DavidLJ48, Waterford CA, zone9 on October 26, 2007 at 12:22 am PST.


For to mention Dragon Fruit taste

I ate some I had ordered in for a CRFG meeting, from SoCal, they were nasty, no real sweetness and what taste there was, was awful and nasty.

But I had some samples, at the Santa Cruz Festival of Fruits over a year ago, it was mildly sweet and pretty good to eat, it tasted nothing like the ones I ordered in for the CRFG meeting.

Talking to the person serving them, he told me variety made some difference ,but some expert and grower told him, it was more to do with soil, climate, nutrients and how ripe it was picked. We all know how fully tree ripened fruit can compare to that which is not.

David

The above followup was added by DavidLJ48, Waterford CA, zone9 on October 26, 2007 at 12:29 am PST.


Dragon fruit storage

When picked ripe, they store well for several days at 60 deg-F, but not 40 (your refrigerator), and not 80.

The above followup was added by Richard Frost on October 26, 2007 at 1:06 pm PST.


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