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Chinese Researchers Develop New Two-Color Dragon Fruit Variety

April 16, 2024

The Yangling Vocational and Technical College in Shaanxi has announced a new dragon fruit variety dubbed “New Two Color” (新双色), which has received provincial-level approval. This variety is the result of a five-year collaboration between the college’s scientific research team, the Yangling Qingpita Garden Dragon Fruit Cultivation Professional Cooperative (杨凌青皮她园火龙果种植专业合作社), and the Yangling District Agricultural Products Quality and Safety Supervision Center (杨陵区农产品质量安全监管中心). It is a hybrid of two varieties: Vietnamese white-fleshed dragon fruit as the female parent and the red-fleshed Da Hong variety as the male parent.

Weighing an average of 363 grams, the New Two Color variety boasts a sugar content of 19.9%, an acid content of 0.29% and a soluble solid content of 23.5%. Under greenhouse cultivation conditions, it begins to bear fruit in the second year and reaches its highest yields in the third year, averaging approximately 4.2 kilograms per square meter. Bud formation starts in mid to late February, with flowering commencing in early May. However, with the aid of artificial lighting, flowering can be induced as early as late March. The first batch of fruits then matures in early June and the fruiting period can last until the end of December, with July to October the most intensive fruiting period.

The New Two Color dragon fruit variety.

Previously, the College of Horticulture of South China Agricultural University cultivated bicolor dragon fruit hybrids called “Two Color No. 1” (双色1号) and “Two Color No. 2” (双色2号). The flesh of the latter variety is white with a hint of pink, although its hue may vary depending on the harvesting time. Despite being slightly smaller than other varieties, it is among the sweetest, with a sugar content of 21–22%. Both varieties were successfully trialed by the cultivation team in Yangling in 2021.

The Two Color No. 2 variety previously trialed in Yangling.

The dragon fruit research and development team at Yangling Vocational and Technical College have also previously developed new varieties for cultivation in China’s northern regions. The Qin Hong Long (秦红龙) variety, derived from a bud mutation of Mi Xuan Long (蜜玄龙), has an average fruit weight of 563 grams, with the heaviest fruits weighing up to 1500 grams. Exhibiting smooth, uniform coloration and short, slightly degenerated bracts, the Qin Hong Long variety is ideal for fresh consumption. Under greenhouse conditions, it thrives in Shaanxi province and similar ecological regions, having gained provincial-level approval in 2023.

Images: Yangling Vocational and Technical College

This article was translated from Chinese. Read the original article.


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