The Peruvian Apple Cactus or Pitya… how beautiful!

I love growing a garden that I can eat, and sometimes you have food right under your nose and don’t even know it. Like this little tasty treat, the Peruvian Apple Cactus.

Plants you can eat the fruit from.  www.brighterfoundation.org

I’ve had them growing in a few of our yards, and I even started cutting them and making new ones, but not until it flowered and bloomed did I know you could eat it. Whahoooo!

Pretty flowers from the apple cactus.  www.brighterfoundation.org

I have to give credit to a fellow Master Gardener that figured out what it was, Gracias! It’s a pretty cactus, grows about 30 feet tall outside, has a beautiful shape when small but honestly it gets a little out of control if not given the correct space. This is an easy plant to have in the house and to control the size, and you’llĀ  have edible gifts to give your friends.

Apple Cactus fruiting.  www.brighterfoundation.org

They are easy to propagate, just take off a piece and put it in dirt, then walk away slowly. That is pretty much it, and it grows. Most succulents and cacti do better starting off with very little water, actually no water. I never give them water. I actually stuck a piece in a pot filled with sand (well fill, most of South Florida is actually fill) and it grew like it was in the best soil ever!

I love the flowers and so do the bees and butterflies. The fruit is pretty too, looks like something out of Willy Wanka.

www.brighterfoundation.org

So to eat it just wait until it gets bright red, then test it with a gentle squeeze, when it “gives” just a little it’s ready. Pop it right off the cactus, slice and eat. It looks and tastes very similar to Dragon Fruit. This cultivar is most likely something created by humans, as there is a lot of conflicting information out there. I’m going to continue researching it’s origins but I wanted to share it with you, inspiration for both of us!

These are great little treats, easy to grow, and really pretty.  www.brighterfoundation.orgOf course now that I know this pretty little plant is also a food source they are being added to my food forest. It has benefits, like the Dragon Fruit, as many cacti do, so dig in!

Enjoy!

S

 

 

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