The History of Dragon Fruit
Vietnam is the place where dragon fruit is extensively grown. It is also known as pitaya fruit and Thalang loy. The super fruit was introduced to Vietnam by the French we can also say that French is the pitallas of pitaya, and today the average yield per hectare is 22-26 tonnes, that is a milestone itself.
According to Aztec literature Pitahaya fruit date back to the 13th century. This fruit is native to Central America.
Malaysia is another warm region where you are sure to find the dragonfruit. It was first introduced in 1999 in Sitiawan, Johar and Kuala Pilah regions. Colombia and Nicaragua are other places where pitahaya fruit is grown for commercial purposes.
These regions attest that Pitaya cactus fruit requires a warm climate, thus prospers well in semi-arid areas. Planting the fruit has great benefits since it's industrially used in juices, making wine and flavorings, not forgetting its medicinal value.
What is Dragon Fruit?
The fruit is tropical fruit belongs to cactus species. It is a . it grows on the Hylocereus cactus, also known as the Honolulu queen, whose flower only open at night. The tropical fruit native to Mexico and the United States of America. It's taste is like a combination of a kiwi and a pear.
Dragon fruit is also known as pitaya, pitahaya, and strawberry pear.
What is the price of one dragon fruit
Price of dragon fruit varies between Rs 150 to 200 per/kg, Rs 200 to 400 per/kg and above according to different verities and location. Dragon fruits are usually big in size and if some one is looking for single fruit then the size plays an important role here. Suppose, if a person is buying one kg dragon fruit at the price of Rs 150 then depending on size one single dragon fruit might be between Rs 90 to 120.
Top ten health benefits of dragon fruit
- Rich in antioxidants like flavonoids, phenolic and betacyanin.
- The protein component of the pitahaya fruit enhances the body's metabolism.
- It's naturally fat free and high in fibre.
- Carotene helps maintain and equally improve the health of the eyes.
- It has phosphorous that aids in tissue formation.
- It contains prebiotics, which are food that feed the healthy bacteria called probiotics in your gut.
- It can strength your immune system.
- Vitamin B1 assists in the production of energy as well as metabolizing carbohydrates.
- Vitamin B2 acts as a multivitamin to recover and improve loss appetite.
- Vitamin B3 lowers bad cholesterol level and enhances the appearance of the skin by moisturizing and smoothening it.
- These are some of the health benefits of eating dragon fruits.
You guys truly kick ass. Thanks for being so awesome. High fives!"
DANA MOORE // Designer
How to eat Dragon Fruit
When we see the shape and size of the fruit, it straight comes in our mind- how to cut this fruit and how to eat it, whether it strikes funnily or it may come irritatingly, but it comes while seeing a pitahaya fruit first time.
Don't worry I am sharing the correct method of eating this fruit with you. For the most part, the fruit is eaten in its raw form.
Note- Eating a dried pitaya fruit equals eating 10x the punch of a fresh pitaya fruit, constituting essential vitamins such as vitamin C, micronutrients and fibre. Thus, consumption of 1.5 oz of a dried fruit equates to almost eating a full pound of the fresh dragonfruit.
All the necessary and important dietary fibre, micronutrients and vitamin C are still in abundance in dried pitahaya fruit. How to make dragon fruit kombucha recipe!
How to cut dragon fruit easily, how to cut dragon fruit video | dragon fruit cutting video
How does dragon fruit taste
Pitahaya fruit tastes like a mix between a kiwi and a pear. A fresh pitahaya fruit contains lots of water soft creamy texture you feel when eating it fresh.
Taste of dragon fruit is sweet fresh and slightly sour.
One can also try various fruit recipes
and can easily make fruit juice, fruit shake, ice cream, jelly, marmalade and preserves, juice, pastries, pulp, and yogurt.
Does dragon fruit make you lose weight?
- One whole pitaya fruit contains just 60 calories and only eight grams of sugar. That is terrific compared to other fruits, one apple is about eighty calories, where banana and mango carries 100 calories.
- Hence, the lesser calories we will intake the lesser weight we will gain. If you will take fewer calories and burn more than there is a high possibility to reduce weight or burn belly fat, if you work harder you might reduce tummy in just seven days.
- Yes there are very high chance to lose weight via pitahaya fruit but at the same time you should be strict with your other food habits, like one should avoid oily food, junk food otherwise only fruit can't do anything.
How to lose weight from 100 kgs to 50-60 kgs if someone asks question like this, one will instantly think about the calories. Here I can add a question for you how we gain wait? And the answer is simple it depends on a formula,
how much calories we are burning in and how much calories we are burning out.
I can make it clear with this example:
If you are eating two chapatis of 25 gram each (1chapati+1chapati=200 calories) (1chapati of 25gram = 100 calories) that means you are taking 200 calories and if you are burning (running, exercise, jogging etc) only 160 calories, rest 40 calories will store in your body. If this process continues than you are adding everyday extra 40 calories.
Why did Gujarat rename dragon fruit to "Kamalam"?
According to NDTV - The dragon fruit will be renamed "Kamalam" in Gujrat as it is shaped like a lotus and the original name is associated with china, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said on Tuesday.
According to the CM the Gujrat Government has applied for a patent to rename the exotic fruit.
The word "Kamalam" is Sanskrit and fruit looks like a lotus.
Farmers in Gujarat has already started branding it as "kamalam Fruit" in local markets.
"The name has instant connect with local farmers" - keyword delivered by Gujrat Government.
However, CM Rupani ruled out any political reason behind renaming the fruit as Kamalam. But at the same time he said the original name is associated with china!
As we all know India has banned several apps related to china, it might be another step against the dragons. Who knows?
How to grow dragon fruit
You can follow the steps given below
Dragon fruit farming FAQ
What is the price of a dragon fruit plant cutting?
If you are thinking to grow this fruit at your home or your farm, then the first ever question strikes to your mind as it did strike to me as well, is - the cost of dragon fruit cutting is?
The cost of a dragon fruit sapling is Rs 30.
What climate does dragon fruit need?
It is a fruit of warm climate, it loves sunlight and heat, but that also should not be excessive. However, this fruit plant survives in poor soil conditions and temperature variations, but the tropical climate region is best for the plant.
It's a subtropical perennial plant; loves warm weather and partial sun. If you live in a high altitude area where the climate is colder, you can still grow it, but make sure you do so in pots, and don't put the shrub outside, significantly if below 28F
It grows as cactus plant which love warm, humid climates and need very little water. These plants are a subtropical plant which needs at least six hours of sunlight per day. They will also grow well in a warm and sunny spot indoors.
What kind of soil does dragon fruit need?
Soil requirement for cultivation
How much water does dragon fruit need?
Best time to plant dragon fruit
How to grow dragon fruit from cuttings and seeds?
Growing dragon fruit from cuttings
- How to grow from cuttings- Cut a 6-15 inch (12-38cm) stem from a plant (the parent plant) at least one-year-old. Cut at an angle for best results. Let the cut stem heal for about a week in a dry place.
- I highly recommend the drip irrigation technique, that is most useful while planting fruit on a large scale. Use a concrete pole to support your plant because it is a climbing plant and needs support in initial days.
Growing dragon fruit from seeds?
- 1If one uses seeds instead of cuttings to have the fruits, he should know that it takes a longer time to grow than plant cuttings. It may take more than 16 months to produce fruits, while plant cutting only take 8 months to deliver fruits.
- 2Anyways choice and circumstances both are yours, be sure to acquire good quality, preferably organic seeds from a reputed seller.
- Slice a dragon fruit in half and use a spoon to collect scrape some seeds. Fill a small pot with sterile seed starter or cactus soil mix. Use a spoon to mix the seed into the top quarter-inch of soil. Make sure this layer is moist and then cover with a plastic sandwich bag or clear food wrap. The cover will retain moisture and warmth
- Note - Growing from seeds can take several years to bear fruit.
How to plant a dragon fruit at your home or garden?
- If you want to plant a dragon fruit at your home or garden, you should chose a container or pot that's big enough to support the plant and ensure it has suitable drainage holes. The pot should be at least 20-25 inches deep and hold 30-35 gallons.
- Fill your pot with the correct soil, and water the soil well. Wait until the soil has absorbed all the water and is draining properly before planting. Dig a hole in the middle of the soil that's at least 3-5 inches deep and place the cutting inside it, packing the soil firmly around the stem.
- To plant this fruit in your garden you need a pole to give support to your dragon plant, you can use concrete plant for best results. Don't need to feed it with fertilizer for couple of months for details scroll down and go to my fertilizer section. Although pitaya fruit plant can be grown in any soil but sandy and loamy soils are best for dragon fruit plant.
How to grow dragon fruit in pots?
- There are two ways you can grow dragon fruits in pots. The first way involves growing the plant from cuttings, and the secound way is to plant seeds. Which ever method you choose keep in mind that growing it from seed could take couple of years to produce fruits, whereas growing from cuttings will only take eight months or hardly a year.
- Growing from cuttings is the most popular method, but it can also be quite challenging to achieve, especially for beginner gardeners. The fruit grows well in pots and pot can be used when you live in a cooler climate or do not have a lot of growing space.
- Fruit growing in pots is reasonably easy to care for, and dragon fruit plants are no exception Growing dragon fruit in pots is easy because you can move the pot indoors once the weather cools and you can also control the amount of sun it receives.
- Choose a pot about once or two times bigger than the dragon fruit's root ball. It will usually be a 5-gallon pot that's 10-12 inches in depth. You will need to re-pot the plant every year as it grows. A mature dragon fruit tree will fit in a 25-30 gallon size pot.
Dragon fruit varieties in India
Three dragon fruit varieties and best quality dragon fruit variety is explained below.
- Hylocereus undatus : White flesh with pink/red skin most popular in Australia.
- Hylocereus Megalanthus : White flesh with yellow skin.
- Hylocereus Costaricensis : Purple/red flesh and pink/red skin.
- 1Hylocereus Megalanthus- This type of dragon fruit has a white fruit flesh and a yellow shell. The shell of this variation is a bit thornier than the rest of the variations, so it is rarer to see in a garden.
- 2Hylocereus Undatus- This is a variation with same white flesh, but exterior of this fruit is red.
- 3Hylocereus Costaricensis- This type of fruit is red in colouration on both the shell and the flesh. The flesh is often a deep red colouration that looks almost unnatural or blood-like.
Hylocereus Megalanthus is the best quality dragon fruit, also known commonly as the Yellow Ecuador Palora dragon fruit. It is a yellow pitahaya and sweetest dragon fruit.
While choosing the fruit no need to think which dragon fruit is best between red and white, just chose red instead of a white one. Normally dragon fruit weight is between 150 to 600 gram but in some case it may be around 1 kg or more.
when it comes to price yellow and red dragon fruits are the most expensive fruits, white coloured fruit is the cheapest dragon fruit.
Which is the rarest dragon fruit in the world
Tyalgum Purple Dragon Fruit is the rarest fruit in the world. That is considered as superior quality fruit.
What is the best fertilizer for dragon fruit plant
Fertilizer for pitaya can be divided into two parts organic and inorganic. Inorganic fertilizer has better control over nutrients and can be complimented with that of organic fertilizers.
Organic fertilizers like compost or manure have the advantage of releasing nutrients more slowly. Therefore the combination with inorganics, whose release is faster, is a good option.
How and when to fertilize dragon fruit
Apply fertilizer after 2 to 3 months after planting a tree. It is when the tree starts growing. During the first year after planting a dragon fruit cactus, fertilize every eight weeks with light doses of fertilizer.
Start fertilizing a couple of inches from the stem, extending is 10-15 inches from the stem. After application make good irrigation.
Apply approximately four pounds of organic fertilizer during the summer. Never overlap both fertilizers, organic and inorganic, try to have a month of difference between one and the other.
Different ways to pollinate dragon fruit
- Most dragon fruit verities are self pollinating, but there are a few verities that require cross-pollination. If that is the case, you will need to grow two or more plants close to one another so they can cross-pollinate. Cross pollination usually occur at night because pollination depends on moths and bats.
- Moths, bats and bees pollinate the plant, but some varieties do not self pollinate at all. You will need to collect the pollen from two different plants, use a cotton swab to paint it onto the opposite plants stigma to cross-pollinate. It needs to be one at night so between eight at night and the six in the morning is best. If you are pollinating different plant use a new cotton swab for each. It will take about a month for the fruit to grow.
How to prune dragon fruit
Pruning means to cut the unwanted branches from the tree. It is best to prune dragon fruit plant regularly to control the size and improve air circulation. It will also help prevent fungal infections and diseases. If left to its own devices, the tree can grow up to 20 feet in height. Prune the tree annually by removing any dead stems as well
as over going.
How long does it take to grow dragon fruit and deliver the first fruit
When and how to harvest dragon fruit plant?
Use the sickle or hand to pick the fruits.
However, harvesting is the most easiest job but for 100 plants it becomes tough and labour requirement becomes necessary. You should use the sickle as priority, and can also pick the fruits by hands.
As if, we all know that dragon fruit farming is a labour cost farming because it usually demands good amount of labour and so is for harvesting as well, if one is having the export business of dragon fruit then it becomes more important to have fair labour.
These plants starts bearing fruits in the first year. Generally, these plant start flowering in May to June month and bear fruits from Aug to Dec months.
When to harvest
The fruit becomes ready for harvesting after one month of flowering. Fruiting time continues till December. Picking up these fruits can be done up to six times within this period.
The fruit harvesting stage is very simple as immature fruit colour is bright green and will turn into a red colour once it is ripened. The exact time for harvesting is 3 to 4 days of colour change. But while exporting, they should be harvested one day after the colour change. Use the sickle or hand to pick the fruits.
Organizations supporting dragon fruit farming in India
For more details on- DRAGON FRUIT FARMING -watch this excellent video
After going through the dragon fruit farming detail guide you must have collected sufficient knowledge & there is a very high possibility of striking some idea, if it does then feel free to share it with me.
After enhancing your knowledge there must be some questions raising in your mind, don't worry just scroll down for the answers.
Cost of dragon fruit farming
The Solution: 5 to 6 lakh per acre is the dragon fruit farming cost
Five to six lakh per acre is the much needed investment for dragon fruit farming. Drip irrigation, leveling, labour installation included with good quality of plant will cost 5 to 6 lakh per/acre.
It is a one time investment because the life of the plant is at least 20 years. Dragon fruit is a climbing cactus and will need support to climb. Therefore, in orders, to grow you will need to plant it near a fence, build a trellis, or a climbing pole. In either case, it's extremely important for your fruit plant to be able to support itself.
I am suggesting concrete as support because the weight of this plant will grow 200 to 250 kg in 5 to 10 years (because of tons of fruits). Moreover, it is economically very good in comparison to steel and other materials; concrete pole usually survive for thirty years. The cactus plant needs support, and concreate is one of the cheapest and healthiest option available to support the plant for years.
One can install the spacing of eight foot by ten foot, 450-500 concrete poles in one acre of land can be installed for dragon fruit farming.
Labour cost in required in fruit farm: As dragon fruit farming is a commercial crop farming system, we must employ at least one labour or skilled worker to manage a 1-acre fruit farm. On average, we may pay Rs-6,000, per/month. For one year, the labour cost is Rs-72,000 for one skilled labour/worker.
Age of dragon fruit is approximately 20 years however, it can produce few fruits after 8 months and lot more fruits after 2 years moreover it will increase producing fruits every year till twenty years; this is the most promising reason behind the ultimate success of this plant across the world.
If we talk about variety, then one should try "C" variety plant because it is high yielding and fast-growing plant variety.
Red pulp variety is 160-220 Rs kg but whit pulp variety is meagre, only 70-80 Rs kg.
Is dragon fruit farming profitable
Dragon Fruit Project Report
Yes it is possible to earn Ten lakhs in a month from dragon fruit farming.
It's a considerable number to even think about it, and straight away, a question falls in our mind, is dragon fruit farming profitable ! Don't worry, I will answer with a calculation and prove how to earn ten million per acre from the fruit farming.
Lets dive in deeper
Dragon fruit cultivation cost per acre- When it comes to profit, the income from 1- acre dragon fruit is around ten lakhs, after taking out the cost, you can get a net profit up to five lakhs, per acre in first year later it will increase. The amount of five lakh which you invested is one time investment for twenty years because the life of dragon fruit is at least 20 years.
One can get fruit from just eight months old dragon fruit plant, and after sixteen months, it can produce 6.5 ton per acre. It will increase day by day after two years it will produce at-least 10 to 12 ton of dragon fruits per/acre. Let us do a quick math here.
However, the average price of red pulp dragon fruit is 150-200 Rs/kg, for example if someone is producing around ten-ton fruits in one acre of land and selling it in just 100 Rs/kg then also he is earning 10 lakh in one year, still can't understand look at the formula-
1 ton = 1016 kg ---> 10 ton (10x1016) will be = 10160 kg
If selling price is 100 Rs per/kg ---> 100 x 10160 = 10,16,000 - Rs Ten lakh, sixteen thousand/
I guess, I have made you understand about dragon fruit business plan and now you are aware of dragon fruit yield per year. I have given just an example you can calculate it by putting the actual value of the fruit which is around 150-200 Rs/kg in C type variety. Don't forget to reduce your investment of Rs 5 to 6 lakh, but the specialty of the fruit i.e, it is just one time investment and will give more benefits after increasing years. Apply the same formula to get dragon fruit yield per hectare.
Where to sell dragon fruit in India
Before starting dragon fruit cultivation for profit you should know where to sell dragon fruit and Mumbai is the hottest dragon fruit mandi in India because dragon fruit farming in Maharashtra is in much more profit making position then others. Apart from Mumbai dragon fruit selling market is available at Gujarat, Ahmadabad (kalupur market), Karnataka and you can also choose online platform like indiamart to sell your product. You can make your own online store and tie up with some big brands like amazon.com, bigbasket.com, indiamart.com etc.
Apart from this you can also contact with 3 to 5 start hotels where the pitaya fruit is used as desert, starter, pitaya bowl and sometime in main course. You should also approach big ice cream companies where the demand of kamalam fruit is quite impressive due to dragon fruit shake, pitaya fruit shake and these big companies contains lots of small stalls. You can also target big malls where the demand of pitaya bowl seems always high.
Is dragon fruit cultivation in India have scope?
Yes, there is an excellent scope in dragon fruit cultivation in India, the cultivation of the fruit is gaining popularity day by day especially in the south region including Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil-Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujrat, Orrisa, West-Bengal, Andhra-Pradesh and Andaman & Nicobar Islands.
We can't see much growth in the north region of India compared to the south region. However, this fruit plant survives in poor soil conditions and temperature variations. But the tropical climate region is best for its cultivation - the tropical monsoon climate. A tropical monsoon climate is the type of climate found in the southern and central area.
Karnataka is fast emerging as the country's leader in dragon fruit cultivation, spread over 1000 acres in the state. Dragon fruit farming in Karnataka becoming the hottest industry in India.
Not only that, the State has become a knowledge bank for the cultivation of exotic fruit as scientist of the Hessarghatta- based Indian Institute of Horticulture Research (IIHR) are supporting its cultivation in different parts of the country through technical counselling.
I am not saying that it cannot be grown in a region like Nepal and Uttarakhand instead of that this fruit farming in Nepal is on the growing scale, but the fruit farming in Uttarakhand is way back. For same fruit Gujarat is scaling day by day.
For more information (pharmacological uses) of this plant click on the links given below -
Which land is suitable for dragon fruit?
Although it is soil friendly, but best soils suits are sandy loam to clay loam
The fruit is related to a cactus family, so it does not require more water, too much of sunlight is not good for its cultivation, in high sunlight area shading can be provided for better yield.
What is the size of the dragon fruit's flower
Dragon fruit flowers are some of the most unique and strange looking flowers globally, not to mention some of the biggest! They can reach the diameter of upto 25 cm and are about 30 cm in length. Flowers only open up for one night and give off a beautiful exotic and fruity scent.
How much does a dragon fruit plant cost?
Dragon fruit plant varies between Rs 30 to 70 according to location. In places like Maharashtra, Karnataka you may get the plant between Rs 30-45 and in places like UP, Uttarakhand the dragon plant price can be up to Rs 50 to 70
Pros and Cons
If you are satisfied with the post please share it..