Cactus blooms Opuntia ficus-indica flower

By August 22, 2017Articles

Cactus blooms Opuntia ficus-indica flower

By Mary Ellen Ellis Opuntia ficus-indica is more commonly known as a Barbary fig. This desert plant has been used for centuries as food, fending, and even dye. Growing Barbary fig plants, as long as you live in the right climate, is both rewarding and useful. What is a Barbary Fig? Barbary fig, a variety of prickly pear cactus, is thought to be native to Mexico where it has long been used for a variety of purposes. The fruits and pads can be eaten by humans and livestock, and the size, sprawling growth, and thorns make this cactus a good natural fence and barrier. The insects that are used to make red dye feed on prickly pear, which has made it an economically useful plant. Today, the plant has spread far from Mexico. It is common in the southwest U.S. and is considered invasive in Africa. While Opuntia/Barbary fig info

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