Dragon fruit are fast-growing plants, and they would usually grow as perennials. Dry tropical climates would be their natural habitats. It would be best to mimic the same conditions they receive in their natural habitat when growing them. However, sunburns may occur when they are exposed to sunlight. Chances are that they may get sunburned despite how well you take care of them. So, this article I am going to explain how to identify dragon fruit sunburn, how to deal with them, and how to prevent them as well. If you are a dragon fruit plant lover, you will find this article very informative
How much sun does a dragon fruit need?
Dragon fruit plants require full sunlight in the morning for about five to six hours per day. They would prefer to have partial sunlight during the rest of the day. Dragon fruit plants are heat-loving plants. However, prolonged exposure to full sunlight would have numerous adverse effects on the overall growth of the plants.
So ideally, you need to protect the plants from scorching sunlight during the hottest hours of the day. That said, keep in mind that young dragon fruit plants are prone to sunburns a lot. So, do not leave the young plants exposed to direct sunlight, even for a while.
Can dragon fruit get too much sun?
Even though dragon fruit plants require a lot of light, they cannot absorb too much. So, you need to either place the plants in a shady spot or protect them from the sun during the hottest hours of the day. Unless it would result in sunburns on the plants.
What does dragon fruit sunburn look like?
Once your dragon fruit plants get sunburnt, you will see how their edges start to become yellow. In addition, if your dragon fruit plants have developed a core, they will continue to thrive and tend to look like an epiphyllum too. If you come across these features, it literally means your plants are sunburnt.
Furthermore, dragon fruit plants may develop sunburnt holes in their leaves as well. If you expose the plants to excessive sunlight for too long, it will result in sunburnt spots on the leaves. In addition to these characteristics, dragon fruit plants may look dry and unhealthy if you expose them to excessive sunlight. Sunburnt plants may not look as healthy as regular plants would do.
Usually, when the temperature exceeds 100 degrees Fahrenheit, it will make the plants go through sunburns. To ascertain it, you can first try to squeeze the plant’s branches. If you feel the branch has moisture inside it, it means there is some moisture inside the plant. On the other hand, if the branches are dry and tend to look unhealthy, it literally means the plants are sunburnt.
What is sunburn?
A sunburn is a condition that takes place once you expose them to excessive sunlight for too long. Dragon fruit plants are used to growing in hot and dry conditions, which means they are tolerant of full sunlight for a few hours. However, they will not withstand direct sunlight during the hottest hours of the day. Once they get exposed to direct sunlight during the hottest hours, especially in summer, they will become stressed and tend to develop the aforesaid signs.
On another note, you can commonly find sunburn among the dragon fruit plants that you have grown in a greenhouse for some time and when you bring them outdoors at once. It would traumatize the plants and end up making them go through sunburn. The first sign of sunburn is yellowing. In addition to that, if you keep them exposed to excessive sunlight, it may lead to even more adverse effects.
Is sunburn harmful?
Sunburn would not be harmful to the plants or would not be fatal to them, as once your dragon fruit plants start to turn yellow, you could expect them to grow as usual. However, it would damage the protective layer that these plants have, which is crucial to protecting the plants from both heat and colder conditions. Moreover, if your dragon fruit plants are suffering from sunburns, it would make the plants look less appealing. If these plants appear to be less appealing, they may be discarded.
Treatments to dragon fruit sunburn.
Dragon fruit plants can recover from sunburn if you act quickly to rectify it. So, to recover them, first of all , if you ever come across any signs of sunburn, you need to move them to a shady spot. You can consider shifting the plants under a taller plant, as that would act as a protective layer for the plants and ensure that your plants get filtered sunlight only.
Aside from that, you can use burlap to protect the plants from sunburn. Once they recover, you may pull them off the plants. Furthermore, you may cover the plants with burlap during the scorching hours of the day too. You may consider using sunshades for the plants too. Once you adhere to these guidelines, you can recover the plants and spot them developing lush growth and new shoots like they used to do.
How does dragon fruit prevent sunburn?
First and foremost, you should plant them in the right spot where they can gain full sunlight in the morning and partial sunlight during midday when the conditions are too harsh. Furthermore, you may make use of sunshades to protect the plants. A sunshade would be crucial here, as it can block about 75 % of the sunlight.
Additionally, you can protect the dragon fruit plants with a plant guard or sunscreen. There are sunscreens on the market that contain some plant oil and organic paint powder. Once you apply it, your plants will be protected from the harmful sunlight.
In addition, you must gradually acclimate the plants to outdoor conditions if you have been growing them indoors or in a greenhouse for some time. Without exposure to those conditions, the plants would become traumatized and experience sunburns. If you have grown these plants in pots, you can also move them during the hotter parts of the day to a cooler location. I suggest you apply some water for them to recover.
To wind up, dragon fruit plants need to have the right balance of light to grow vigorously and firmly. All you need to keep in mind is to not expose them to harsh sunlight during the day, as simply put, they cannot tolerate it. However, if your precious dragon fruit plants come across this condition, you need to act fast and try to rectify it so that you can avoid any further repercussions.
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