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Physical and physicochemical modifications of white-fleshed pitaya throughout its development

Magalhães, Deniete Soares, Ramos, José Darlan, Pio, Leila Aparecida Salles, Vilas Boas, Eduardo Valério de Barros, Pasqual, Moacir, Rodrigues, Filipe Almendagna, Rufini, José Carlos Moraes, Santos, Verônica Andrade dos
Scientia horticulturae 2019 v.243 pp. 537-543
Hylocereus, color, commercialization, firmness, flowering, fruiting, harvest date, pH, pulp, ripening, total soluble solids, wilting
This study aimed to evaluate the evolution of physical and physicochemical characteristics of white-fleshed dragon fruit during its development. Correlations between external color and the main pulp quality variables were analyzed. Important characteristics were observed throughout fruit development, such as increase in pulp weight and yield, pH, and soluble solids and decrease in weight and thickness, firmness, and moisture. The visual changes in different development stages showed their potential use as morphologic markers in the determination of fruit ripening, especially the appearance of fruit scales. Based on the analyzed variables, the ideal harvest time indicated for commercialization in the short or medium term is between 34–38 days after anthesis. After 40 days, the fruit becomes less visually attractive because of scale wilting and loss of the intense pink color of the skin; although, up to 42 days, they possess adequate internal quality to be consumed, and may be also used for processing.