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How Do I Hand Pollinate My Dragon Fruit Plant? Help!

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  • How Do I Hand Pollinate My Dragon Fruit Plant? Help!

    Hi everybody, this is my first post. This forum looks great so far. Here's my first question.

    We have a large Dragon Fruit Plant (Pitaya) on a pepper tree in our yard.

    It has bloomed for about five years now. It starts flowering in mid summer and blooms 3 to 5 times by mid September. One summer we had about 12-20 fruit. I've read that hand pollination is best because the flowers only stay open for one night. What's the best way to do this? Any help would be great.

    Thanks A Lot.

  • #2
    I don't know. I haven't grown these, but have hand pollinated lots of other plants. Look to see if there are differences in male and female flowers. On papayas, it's very clear, on zucchini, you have to look a little. A female flower may have more of a swelling immediately under the flower. Take a q-tip or cotton fluff wrapped around a finger and wipe it lightly across the golden pollen of a male flower, then dust the female flower in the very middle. If you know you have different plants growing in the same location, try to go from one plant to the other even if this is a plant that has both flowers on the same plant. That's just for a slight edge of genetic diversity and hybrid vigor.

    Good luck, and let us know how it works out.

    Beautiful flowers, by the way. I've had cereus bloom for me, but never pitaya, which is a type of cereus.