Thursday, July 13, 2017

Beavertail Cactus in Bloom



Beavertail Cactus in Bloom


Beavertail Cactus in Bloom





Stunning Beavertail pricklypear or Beavertail cacti in bloom (Opuntia basilaris) filmed in the Mojave Desert and Death Valley National Park in mid-April.

Flat, grayish-green, leafless, jointed stems in a clump, lack large spines and have vivid rose or reddish-lavender flowers on upper edge of joint. Beaver-tail cactus is a low-growing prickly pear, 6-12 in. high, with brilliant, majenta flowers. The pads of this cactus lack the long, straight spines of other prickly pears but are covered with miniscule, gray-blue bristles with barbed tips.



The gray-green stems, low growth, and brilliant flowers, which often nearly cover the plant, make this a popular ornamental in hot, dry climates. It need not be dug up; a joint broken from a plant will quickly root in dry sand. Opuntia with flat joints are called Pricklypear; in the Southwest, if the fruits are juicy and edible, they area called tuna by people of Spanish-American heritage.



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