Opuntia ficus-indica
   compleat botanica    plants    specimen names    Specimen (Op - Os)   
This page was created using standard templates and sample data from
The Compleat Botanica.

Learn how you can publish your own plant pictures and plant-related data using
The Compleat Botanica.









Opuntia ficus-indica

tuna cactus
barbary fig
pricklypear cactus

  family cactaceae 
  genus opuntia 

More specimen entries
[prev]  [opuntia ficus-indica]  [Next]


Genus  Opuntia Species  ficus-indica Variety  Cultivar  Common names  tuna cactus   barbary fig   pricklypear cactus Family  CACTACEAE Specimen number  S12006 Data source  GrUnFr p289;MedPl p240;UnVeg p78
Life cycle
Life form  Terrestrial Life cycle  Annual Life span  1 year Annual cycle  Evergreen Stature  Shrub Growth form  Various Growth habit  Not applicable Overall height    Overall spread   
Sunshine  Full sun Water    Optimal soil texture  Soil texture 26 Acceptable soil pH  Slightly acidic USDA hardiness  Not classified AHS heat zones  Not classified Sunset climate zones  Not classified
Suitable for gardens  no Nursery  Unknown Compost  no Size at acquisition  Unknown Garden location  Unknown Garden notes  Opuntia ficus-indica does best in full sun.
Special qualities
Tolerates drought  no Tolerates high humidity  no Tolerates seaside conditions  no Insect resistant  no Disease resistant  no Deer resistant  no Best uses    Symbiosis  Attracts butterflies  no Attracts hummingbirds  no Autumn foliage  no Colorful berries  no Desirable qualities    Other interest    Other interest color  Other interest period   
Adverse factors
Common pests  Poisonous parts  Poisonous indications  Internal poison  no Dermatologic poison  no Livestock poison  no Mechanical injury  no Hay fever pollen    Hay fever season    Adverse qualities   
Herbal medicine
Medicinal properties  irritable bowel relief   prostate reducer Medicinal parts  Flowers   Fruit   Stems Has medicinal uses  yes Do not self-administer  no Do no use if pregnant  no Legally restricted  no Toxicity precautions  Medicinal notes  The fruit of this plant as well as the leaves and the seed pods are all edible. Its most notable nutritional component is vitamin C. Some of its possible culinary uses include: as syrup and in jam. Opuntia ficus-indica is most commonly used cooked or fresh. Prickly pear cactus (sometimes called tuna cactus and barbary fig) is thought to have beneficial uses as either an irritable bowel relief or a prostate reducer. The flowers and the fruit and even the stems are used to prepare herbal remedies.
Traditional uses
Parts used  Traditional uses  Contemporary uses  Fragrance  Fragrance parts  Fragrance intensity    Fragrance category    Dye parts  Dye color 
Propagule  Cutting Pollination method  Self fertile Planting style    Crop spacing    Row spacing    Cold frame  Planting period    Harvesting period    Frost tolerance  Hardy Heat requirement  Warm Fertilizer  Low nitrogen Time to harvest 
Is edible  yes Culinary uses  Syrup   Jam   Fresh   Cooked Nutritional value  Vitamin C Edible parts  Fruit   Leaves   Seed pods Description of edible parts 2 inch oval shaped, colored green turning to red over time, covered with short prickly hairs, and juicy red flesh Flavor / texture  has juicy pulp-filled leaves and seed-pods which have sweet fruit surrounding numerous seeds
Horticulture notes  No special fertilization is necessary for Opuntia ficus-indica to produce fruit. It requires warm days for good production. Low nitrogen is required for optimal growth. Propagation of Prickly pear cactus (in some places called tuna cactus and barbary fig) can be achieved using a cutting. This plant may have originated from Central and South America.
Tag needs printing  no Collection notes  Opuntia ficus-indica has an annual life cycle. Prickly pear cactus (locally known in some parts as tuna cactus and barbary fig) is evergreen.

Page 3305 of 4998

Last reviewed November 01, 2004   


  Order your copy here