Sunday, January 8, 2012
Plant Spotlight: Black-Spined Prickly Pear
Black-Spined Prickly Pear (Opuntia macrocentra) is also sometimes called Purple Prickly Pear is one of the more beautiful prickly pear species that does very in the Central Rio Grande Valley of New Mexico. It normally grows to about 3 ft high with a wider spread but can be kept smaller by pruning. As its name implies it is armed with black spines but these are normally limited to the top of each pad. Flowers are yellow with reddish centers. During winter the cooler temperatures cause the pads to turn beautiful shades of pink, purple, and blue-green. We have observed that during winter, pad droop (wilt) is usually less than other prickly pear species making it a good year-round addition for your xeric landscape. This cacti requires very little water and does best in well-drained soils. Available at Trees That Please Nursery in various container sizes.