Date: 10 Mar 2016, Entry id: 1457657703
Do-It-Yourself Support Structure for Dragon Fruit
This interesting do-it yourself project was sent to us by our customer from South Florida. Many tropical gardeners want to grow fascinating Dragon Fruit, and their most common question is - what kind of support I should use for this amazing fruiting cactus? We hope you find this information very useful. Happy Gardening!
Dragon fruit is a terrestrial/epiphytic fruit baring cactus, which may grow fleshy stems up to 30 ft high, given sturdy support. However, downward hanging or horizontal branches stimulate production of flowers at the tips of the branches. Commercial groves in different parts of the world use different method to achieve this. The traditional Vietnamese way is to train the plant into a “fountain”, which consists of a vertical central trunk about 8ft tall and a horizontal structure, such as a wagon wheel on top of it to support the horizontal branches (see picture on the right).
This picture served as my inspiration to build my own structure. I used five 4”x4” 10ft wood beams as the trunk, shaped as a cross. I attached the beams to each other with 10” long screws.
I dug a 2 ft deep 12”x12” hole in the ground and positioned the trunk inside, such that about 8ft are above ground. I covered it with several layers of burlap top to bottom.
The horizontal structure on top is made of four 4ft long 2”x2” wood beams and two 12”x12” wood plates to hold them together. I attached this structure to the top of the trunk.
I used old watering pipe to form two rings around the trunk to support the branches. Here is the result!... See step-by-step full size pictures and the rest of the article...