73.2 F
Honolulu
Amy Fujimoto | AlohaWithLove.comhttps://alohawithlove.com
I grew up in Hawaii and when I'm not traveling the islands, I write down my Mom's recipes, hike with Daisy the waddling rescue, work on my 200+ gallon aquaponics system, and dream about my future van conversion so I can do some more traveling.

Comment below so we can discuss!

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click these links to buy something I may earn a commission with no additional cost to you. This helps keep Aloha With Love running, thank you! Learn More.

These gorgeous and exotic fruit have become more and more popular in recent years with the boom of smoothies and health foods. Commonly advertised as Pitaya, you’ll see dragon fruit as a popular choice in fruit flavors in Hawaii, but you can also find the actual fruit at farmers’ markets, Chinatown grocery stores and dragon fruit farms from July through November. But what many people (and locals) don’t know is that the best part of these fruits are their flowers!

Dragon fruit flower still blooming in my yard at 7 AM

Dragon fruit flowers are the size of your head when fully bloomed and stay open for only one short night. As soon as the warm morning rays hit their delicate petals, they wilt incredibly fast and their swift beauty is gone before anyone is the wiser. Often blooming on a full moon or near it, they can be hard to spot since most people are in bed by the time they are fully open (around 10 PM). However, if you keep your eyes peeled anytime before 8 AM, you’ll be able to find these magical flowers in the sunlight and take a selfie.

Neighborhood dragon fruit at 7:30 AM

Dragon fruit are actually a type of cactus, which is the first thing that surprises people. Local dragon fruit can be found in several neighborhoods with their long spiny arms hanging over a yard’s fence, wall or terrace. You’ll see the cactus of the dragon fruit year round, but they don’t get interesting until July when the flowers and fruit begin to appear. If the plant is healthy, dragon fruit will continue to flower and bear fruit through November.

Fresh dragon fruit from our yard!

The most common dragon fruit you’ll find in Hawaii will be with white meat and a dark pink skin. The second most common will look similar on the outside, but will have dark pink meat instead, which I think is slightly sweeter. The third and most rare is the yellow dragon fruit that is the sweetest of them all. If you have a chance to try the yellow one, seize the opportunity! Many locals don’t even get a chance to taste it. Despite their eye-catching beauty, these fruit typically aren’t super sweet like a mango, but instead have a subtle, faint sweetness that may surprise you.

Local tip: Shopping for a dragon fruit? Look for a uniform dark pink all around the fruit, with slightly yellowed “leaves.” Many local growers say “the uglier, the better” when removing a dragon fruit from its cactus. If the pointy leaves on the dragon fruit are very green, that means that the fruit was picked too early and needs a few more days. As with most fruit, make sure it gives only a little when you press on the skin.

My Recommendation

Maui’s first commercial dragonfruit farm has a tour that will show you agricultural life in Hawaii and give you a close-up view of these “King of Fruits.” You’ll also get a chance to wander the farm and see the variety of fruit they have, in addition to the outdoor activities like the zipline!

Related

Papakolea Is One Of Four Green Sand Beaches In The World

I think it's really cool that one of the four green sand beaches in the world is right here on the Big Island! The chances of this happening give you a really neat outlook on geology and makes you...

Stop At Mahaiula Beach After You Arrive In Kona

Drive north from Kona International airport (KOA) for 20 minutes and you'll reach the first beautiful white sand beach in North Kona. Mahaiula Beach is one of three white sand beaches in Kekaha Kai State Park and it's a...

Hike To Makalawena Beach In Puu Alii Bay

Makalawena Beach is the least visited beach of the three white sand beaches in Kekaha Kai State Park. While it may require a little extra effort to reach, it's not without charm or beauty. If you want to add...

Kua Bay Is The Gorgeous Beach That Has Everything

If you're looking for azure waters and velvety-soft white sand, look no further. Kua Bay is a spectacular sight and as perfect as a postcard. For those arriving into Kona International Airport (KOA) and looking to hop right into...

Kekaha Kai State Park’s 3 Magnificent White Sand Beaches

Kekaha Kai State Park is so much more than just 3 white sandy beaches - although that's already setting the bar up pretty high! You've got a couple of options when you visit Kekaha Kai State Park. If you...

Walk The Kukio Beach Path For Coastal Views

Kukio Beach is a fun beach that has a little bit of everything. There are turtles to see, a long paved path along the coastline, free parking, a small beach safe for children, and even some snorkeling opportunities. Not many...

Real. Local. Non-touristy.

My emails will make you smile!

I'm all about living life in Hawaii with passion, honesty, and respect. So if you like legal hikes, authentic experiences, and a kind and humble personality, I'm your local girl!

You'll love reading my fun and down-to-earth emails from a local perspective. I'll send you my personal tips, travel suggestions, and DIY project ideas that are perfect for Hawaii living.

Sign up below and you'll be added to my email list!

Aloha with love, Amy

Dragon fruit and their night-blooming flowers in Hawaii