Hylocereus undatus, the white-fleshed Dragon Fruit or Pitahaya, is a species of Cactaceae and is the most cultivated species in the genus which is fast growing, epiphytic or xerophytic, vine-like cactus.. It originates in Central and northern South America.
It is used both as an ornamental vine and as a fruit crop. The fruit is highly decorative, with a bright red skin, studded with green scales. The flesh is white, juicy and delicious in flavour, with tiny black seeds.
Stems of H. undatus are triangular, 3-sided, although sometimes 4- or 5-sided, green, fleshy, jointed, many branched. Each stem segment has 3 flat wavy ribs and corneous margins may be spineless or have 1-3 small spines. Stems scandent, creeping, sprawling or clambering, up to 10 m long. Aerial roots, which are able to absorb water, are produced on the underside of stems and provide anchorage for stems on vertical surfaces.
Dragon fruit is a nutrient and vitamin-rich fruit. It also has a high fiber, high therapeutic value, lower blood pressure effect, blood fat, detoxification, AIDS lung, beauty, eyesight, constipation and also lower diabetes effect.
Growing Dragon fruit has several positive aspects for commercial producers. These plantings generate a fairly quick return on investment as the fruit production can be expected to begin 11 months from planting, and full production in the orchard occurring from 3rd year.