Ethnobotany, Productivity, and Ecophysiology of Pitaya (Stenocereus queretaroensis)
Keywords:Cacti, Stenocereus, aridity, ethnobotany, ecophysiology.
Pitaya (Stenocereus queretaroensis) is a columnar cactus that produces attractively colored edible
fruits in both wild and cultivated populations in the subtropical semiarid lands of Mexico.
Pitaya is a relatively recently domesticated fruit, which during the last 10 years has emerged as
a fruit crop whose cultivation is feasible using relatively low inputs of anthropogenic energy or
water and whose fruits ripen during the spring season, before summer when the local markets
are flooded with other fresh summer fruits. These agronomic traits have increased the
economic viability of small farms in semiarid subtropical lands of Mexico.