How to grow dragon fruit?

Dragon fruit plants can be easily grown in the garden or in a pot. It is a climbing cactus and needs support for growing.

The flowers will come in seven to eight months after planting and they are unique, one of the largest flowers in the world with a diameter of 25 cm and is about 30 cm long. The big, white scented flowers bloom in the night after 10 p.m. and close at daybreak. The flower is also known as “moon flower”, “lady of the night” or “queen of the night”.

If your dragon fruit is unable to self-pollinate, you’ll need to grow two or more dragon fruit plants closely for cross-pollination.  Assisted pollination by hand works too. After successful pollination, small fruitlets are formed six days later. The fruits mature in 35 to 40 days after flowering.

Checklist:

Propagation: The cuttings should be cured in dry, cool areas for 5 – 7 days before planting. Root the cuttings in pots or in the field directly under shade. Refrain from watering and fertilising during rooting. Once rooted, the plant should be sun hardened before planting out in the field.

Pot: If you start the plant in a 5-gallon, 10-12 inches deep pot, keep repotting yearly or when the plant seems root bound. A large 25-30 gallon size pot that is around 20-24 inches is enough to accommodate a mature dragon fruit tree. To buy new pots, click here.

Soil condition: Well-drained soil with substantial organic matter, replenish the compost once every six months. Here are some of the good quality soil and compost.

Water: Require small amount of water, ensure the soil does not dry out

Sun: Full sun

Support: Use a single wooden or concrete pillar about 8cm x 8cm x 2.5 metres, with 40 cm buried in the ground. Normally two to four plants are used for each post.

Fertilizer: After 30 days from planting, apply organic fertiliser with high-nitrogen once a month for six months. On the seventh month, withdraw the high-nitrogen fertiliser and replace with high-potassium, low-nitrogen organic fertiliser to encourage flowering and fruiting. Nitrogen is required for vegetative growth. Not sure which fertilizer to go for? Ask GoPasar vendors.

Pruning: Remove all the overgrowing, decaying, overcrowding, and dead stems saving only the healthier and productive ones. To encourage formation of flower buds, the matured main branches are nipped at the top, which subsequently leads to the sprouting of side shoots and flower buds along the edges of the stem. Retain only two fruits per branch for bigger and uniform fruits. For good quality pruners, see here.

Harvest: For full flavour and sweetness, harvest the fruits when the overlapping fleshy bracts (scales) turn fully red.

GoPasar is a one-stop gardening solutions, to purchase gardening essentials to grow dragon fruit, you can visit GoPasar Marketplace and get everything you need.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *