Durian Seasons and Production Areas in Australasia
Durian or Durio ZIbethinus, is known as The King of Fruits in South East Asia. The fruit requires very specific conditions to grow and it can only be produced during dry spells of at least 1 or 2 months for the flowers to start growing and become fruits. The production season in South East Asia is mostly during the south-west and north-east monsoons. During the monsoons flower buds tend to grow on the durian trees’ lateral branches. It takes approximately 4 weeks or so for these buds to develop into flowers.
Durian flowers are known to grow in clusters of three to ten flowers in about two to four months in the seasons that are dry. One of the biggest difficulties faced by producers is that the fruits cannot be produced. There is a high rate of incompatibility in these trees and it’s quite likely that only 20-25% of the produce actually develops fully. The only way to better the success rates of development is by using cross-pollination. Good crops can easily be obtained using this method and it can take anything between 90 to 130 days based on the cultivar. Producers need to ensure a sufficient amount of water is provided to the trees to ensure proper growth. If too much water is used it may lead to more leaf growth at the expense of the fruits and normal conditions need to be ensured for proper growth of these fruits. If everything is done correctly then the fruits should start ripening at the beginning of the monsoons. Let’s take a look at the durian growing seasons in the major production areas.
Thailand is known to be one of the major production areas and the season of production generally spans for about five months, approximately starting in April (mid) to the end of September. The entire country’s climate is just perfect making the entire Thai region viable for durian production. There are hundreds of cultivars in Thailand but only four of them are used for large scale commerce.
There are three major areas of production in West Malaysia. North, East and the entirety of the West Central and South regions is categorized into a separate group. The weather conditions vary greatly in these three regions hence the categorization. Depending on the monsoons and dry weather conditions, cultivation is done accordingly.
East Malaysia’s durian season in the Sarawak and Sabah regions generally spans from June to August, and a small time period of November to December. Both these regions do not export any durian outside the country as most of it is used up for local usage.
Indonesia has two major seasons of production based on the localities. Most of the harvest is conducted during the months of October to February but only the Sumatra region is known to produce its crop during the months of June to September.
In the Philippines region the durian flowers generally bloom during the months of April to June and these flowers are harvested during the months of sometime from August to November. It leads to a competitive advantage in the market as the harvest season in Philippines is later than any other Southeast Asian country.
Vietnam is known for its production of the durian fruit in small quantities. The country mostly produces durian for the local markets and only a small percentage of the produce is sent to Taiwan. The season generally starts in May and ends in late July.
Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar
These three durian producing regions have a common season of production. They mostly produce during the months of May to July. They are known for their high quality produce of Chanee and Monthon. One of the largest areas of production is the Kampot province and they often fail to meet up with the production levels due to excessively high demand for their high quality produce.
The produce is grown throughout the region mostly during the months of July to August. Brunei is known to produce the largest number of Brunei variants and Brunei durian fruits are famous throughout the Southeast Asia.
Singapore is responsible for the production of durian for the markets of Malaysia and Thailand. The entire region of Singapore has two production seasons. The first one ranges from May to July and the second season lasts from November to January.
Queensland is the most important Australian region for durian production. Queensland was originally not a producer of durian, Australia sourced durian clones from Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand and began production not too long ago.
Papua New Guinea
The northern region of Papua New Guinea is one of the largest producers of durian and they have been consistently producing durian for local consumption since the 1940s.
Learn more about 10 popular types of durian!