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Prickly Pear

20 products

Extremely valuable desert cacti native to the US, Mexico and down south through South America, prickly pear are also extensively grown in many other parts of the world including the Mediterranean region, Australia and Africa. Virtually every part of the plant is edible, fruit, pads and seeds which can be ground into flour. The fibers are made into baskets and the sap is added to plaster and mortar to add strength. The fruits are called prickly pears, tunas, Indian pear or Indian fig are sweet and succulent. The flavor is often compared to a mixture of strawberries, fig, watermelon, honeydew and citrus, with a lot of flavor diversity amongst the different species and varieties. They are eaten fresh and made into jams, juices, wine and in baking. The pads can be cooked into a very healthy vegetable similar in taste to green beans. Called Nopales when whole they are referred to as nopalitos when diced up and cooked. New research is showing them to have an excellent affect in preveting blood sugar problems such as diabetes and hypoglycemia. The juicy pulp is used the same as aloe vera juice in treating burns and other skin and internal conditios. Many spineless cultivars have been developed for use as an animal feed for growing in arid regions where it can be a major part of an animals food and water consumption. Also can be used as a living fence and are planted sometimes as close as 1 foot apart to make an inpenetrable hedge. Plants are very attractive with unique large pads jutting out at different angles, very showy large, but delicate flowers in the spring and pretty gold, red or purple fruit adorning the plant in the fall and winter. While it can take prolonged drought it grows best with occasional summer irrigation and some fertilizer feedings during the growing season, especially when young. They are grown commercially on a large scale in Mexico and the Mediteranean region with a growing number of farms growing them in the US now too. Hardy zones 7 or 8-11, depending on the variety.

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Pereskia aculeata The Barbados Gooseberry is a super rare and unique leafy cactus vine alsoΒ known as Blade-apple Cactus, Lemonvine, or Rose Cactus. Careful they are thorny!Β  The leaves and fruit ar...
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Said to be one of Luther Burbanks major plant breeding successes, it was breed primarily as a thornless forage type cactus for cattle forgage in the arid southwest. Long popular in gardens for its ...
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A cold hardy forage and vegetable variety from Peter Felkers colleagues breeding program in Argentina. Vigorous growing plants are very productive of low thorn pads. A cross of Opuntia lindheimerii...
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Another cold hardy forage, vegetable and fruiting variety from Peter Felkers colleagues breeding program in Argentina. Vigorous plants are very productive of low thorn pads and fruit. Very fast gro...
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A sturdy thick padded variety that has long showy thorns similar to Desert Gold. Very upright growing with good crops of large sweet yellow fruit.Hardy zones 8-11. Opuntia spp.
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Truly amazing large orange, red and green blushed fruit has delicious, sweet fruity and juicy flesh with very few seeds. One of our all time favorites, brix levels average 14.30! Very productive pl...