Performance of dragon fruit (Hylocerus undatus) in the low country wet zone (LCWZ) of Sri Lanka

A.J. Warusavitharana, K.H.S. Peiris, K.M.D.G. Wickramatilake, A.T. Ekanayake, H.A.D.S. Hettiarachchi, J. Bamunuarachchi
The dragon fruit (Hylocereus undatus) is commonly cultivated in many tropical and subtropical countries. It has been introduced to Sri Lanka recently and is becoming a popular fruit crop. A dragon fruit planting was established in 2004 at the Fruit Research and Development Institute, Sri Lanka. First flowering was observed two years after establishment. Flowering begins usually from April and fruiting season extends up to November. Peak harvest was in August and the weight of harvested fruits ranged from 140-945 g. The average fruit yield of a 2-, 3- and 4-year-old plant is 2.7, 11.0 and 15.3 kg, respectively. Yields of 2269, 9195 and 12715 kg ha-1 were obtained from 2-, 3- and 4-year-old plantations, respectively. The fruit is medium to large (average fruit weight 406.7-556.8 g) fruit, with a 2-3.5 mm thick skin with 15-22 scales. The flesh of dragon fruit constitutes 70-79% of the ripe fruit. Average fruit length, width and girth are 11.3-14.2 cm, 8.2-9.5 cm and 25.5-29.1 cm. respectively. The fruit maturity is 45-50 days from flower bulb or 30-35 days from bloom. The Brix value of ripe fruits ranged from 16-18. Results indicate that dragon fruit has been successfully cultivated in the low country wet zone agro-ecological region in Sri Lanka.
Warusavitharana, A.J., Peiris, K.H.S., Wickramatilake, K.M.D.G., Ekanayake, A.T., Hettiarachchi, H.A.D.S. and Bamunuarachchi, J. (2017). Performance of dragon fruit (Hylocerus undatus) in the low country wet zone (LCWZ) of Sri Lanka. Acta Hortic. 1178, 31-34
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2017.1178.5
evaluation, suitability, yield, fruiting season

Acta Horticulturae