Saturday, October 01, 2005

Fruit: Dragon Fruit (Hylocereus undatus)

Bought my first Dragon Fruit (aka pitahaya) last weekend at Berkeley Bowl. I picked one up because it was so crazy looking, and then put it in my basket because it had satisfying heft.

Before slicing it in half, I had done some googling. Even so, the opened fruit looked an object escaped from a cartoon. It reminded me of cars I had seen growing up in and around Los Angeles. Bright pink with zebra skin upholstery, that kind of thing.

The fruit is not very flavorful but is pleasantly sweet and refreshing when chilled. The white pulp is water soluble, and the black seeds can apparently be cultivated into cacti.

Here's the cultivation skinny, brought to you by Trade Winds Fruit:
A vining, terrestrial or epiphytic cactus, with fleshy stems reaching from a few inches up to 20ft long (in mature plants). The plant may grow out of, and over the ground or climb onto trees using aerial roots. It grows best in dry, tropical or subtropical climates where annual rainfall ranges from 20-50" per year.

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