Sunday, February 14, 2010

Pitaya – Acanthocereus pitahaya

Pitaya – Acanthocereus pitahaya
Pitaya is of the cactus family, thus it can with stand drought. It is a tropical fruit, originally from the American continent, found from the Florida coasts to southern Peru.

The term pitaya comes for Haiti and means “scaled fruit”.

In Colombia it can be cultivated from sea level to nearly 5,000 ft. above sea level but its deal habitat is around 2,200 ft.

There are approximately 18 varieties of pitaya. One of them, when ripe, is yellow on the outside and has a transparent white pulp with altitude of tiny black seeds.

Another when ripe has red flesh and pulp.

Though it is more handsome to look at, it has less flavor than its yellow cousin.

There are also native varieties goring in the wild. Flowering begins with the rainy season and the principal harvesting is done in accordance with each region’s rainfall.

The pitaya is an exquisite fruit eaten primarily as a fresh fruit but also used in cocktails and beverages.

The plants can be found in gardens as an ornamental species not only because it is always green but also thanks to its fragrant and lovely flowers.

As all fruits, it contains a high percentage of water. The pitaya, in addition to carbohydrates, contains phosphorus, calcium and ascorbic acid.
Pitaya – Acanthocereus pitahaya
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