Native to Central America, dragon fruit is popular for its refreshing tropical fruit, medicinal qualities and ornamental night-blooming flowers. The French introduced the dragon fruit to the Vietnamese over 100 years ago. Today, Vietnam is the top commercial producer of dragon fruit in this region. Dragon fruit is a climbing cactus that is utilized for food, medicine, decorative landscaping and food coloring. The plant's genus name, Hylocerus, means "wax' or "torch-like" and grows best in dry, tropical climates.
Things You'll Need
- 6-6-6 or 8-4-12 fertilizer
- Manure or compost
Apply fertilizer 2 to 3 months after planting a dragon fruit tree. This is when the tree starts growing.
During the first year after planting a dragon fruit cactus, fertilize every 8 weeks with light doses (1/4 lb) of fertilizer.
In the second and third years, gradually increase fertilizer to 1/3 lb per dragon fruit cactus every 2 months. Add 6 lbs of manure or compost around the base of each cactus every 6 months.
All following years, increase fertilizer to 1/2 lb to 3/4 lb per cactus plant. Apply fertilizer every 4 months. Add 5 lbs of manure or compost for each dragon fruit plant every 6 months.
Tips & Warnings
- Dragon fruit plants thrive best in tropical climates.
- Depending upon soil conditions, location, climate, and a myriad of other parameters, the above general guidelines must be modified to suit individual dragon fruit growing needs.
- Do not over-fertilize or over-water a dragon fruit cactus. Doing either can kill it.