Genus of comes from the Gree words: hyle (wood) and cereus (cactus).
A vining, terrestrial or epiphytic cactus with succulent three-winged, green stems, reaching up to 20 feet long. Wings are up to 50 mm wide with modulate margins, spine are 1 mm long. Plant may climb trees via aerial roots. Flowers are fragrant, white, up to 35 cm long, blooming at night. Fruit is round, red, pink or yellow, with prominent scales.
Probably from Mexico.
Ornamental cultivation in tropical regions.
Rich in vitamin C, phosphorus and calcium.
Air-dried, powdered stems contain B-sitosterol.
Parts used and preparation
Edibility / Culinary
Fruit is edible; refreshing, slightly sweet, with a similarity to Kiwi fruit.
Eaten raw, as fresh fruit.
Used in fruit salads.
Can be processed into various products such as: juices, sherbets, jam, syrup, ice cream, yogurt, jelly, candy and pastries.
Flower buds can be used to make soup or mixed in salads; also, eaten as vegetable.
Tea sometimes made from the flowers.
No known medicinal folkloric use in the Philippines.
Elsewhere, red fruit used to prevent colon cancer, for diabetis, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.
Sap of stems used as vermifuge, but said to be caustic and hazardours.
• Coloring: Red and pink pulp can be source of food coloring agent.
• Wound Healing: In streptozotocin diabetic rats, where wound healing is delayed, topical applications of H. undatus showed woundhealing effects with increases in hydroxyproline, tensile strength, total proteins, DNA collagen content and better epithelization.
• Antioxidant / Decrease Aortic Stiffness: Study of the aqueous extract of the fruit pulp of H. undatus in stretozotocin-induced diabetic rats showed it was effective in controlling oxidative damage and decreasing aortic stiffness.
• Betacyanins / Food Coloring: Study indicate an immense potential for development of natural food colorants from the fruit peel of Dragon fruit, with a longer shelf life than that of beet juice
Commercial fruit crop.
Plants and seeds in the cybermarket.