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Opuntia tomentosa - Salm-Dyck

Common Name Velvet prickly pear, Woollyjoint Pricklypear
Family Cactaceae
USDA hardiness 9-12
Known Hazards Species in this genus generally have numerous minutely barbed glochids (hairs) that are easily dislodged when the plant is touched and they then become stuck to the skin where they are difficult to see and remove. They can cause considerable discomfort[200]. This species is unique in having pads covered with tiny hairs, so that they feel like velvet.
Habitats This species is mostly found in sub-tropical, semi-arid and warmer temperate environments. It is a weed of roadsides, railways, pastures, grasslands, open woodlands, rangelands, disturbed sites and waste areas.
Range Origin: Mesoamerica. Native to Mexico and Guatemala.
Edibility Rating    (3 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care (info)
Tender Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Opuntia tomentosa Velvet prickly pear, Woollyjoint Pricklypear


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Opuntia tomentosa Velvet prickly pear, Woollyjoint Pricklypear
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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Opuntia tomentosa is an evergreen Perennial growing to 4.5 m (14ft) by 4.5 m (14ft) at a medium rate.
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 10.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Opuntia hernandezii A.P. de Candolle; Opuntia oblongata Wendland; Opuntia macdougaliana Rose; Opuntia icterica Griffiths; Opuntia sarca Griffiths ex Scheinvar.

Plant Habitats

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit
Edible Uses:

Edible Portion: Fruit. Fruits are eaten raw or made into jellies and jams that have a flavour like guava jelly. A succulent cactus chutney is made by mixing the fruit with raisins, apples, onions, lemon peel, dates, suger, vinegar, and spices [183]. larger fruit measure about two inches long or a little more. They are juicy and fairly sweet, though less tasty than some other kinds of prickly pears.

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.


None Known

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Fencing  Fodder

Carbon Farming Solutions - Agroforestry Services: living fence (Agroforestry is a land use management system in which trees or shrubs are grown around or among crops or pastureland). Intercropped with other forage species like Mesquite (Prosopis SPP). Fodder: bank, insect.

Special Uses

Carbon Farming  Food Forest

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Agroforestry Services: Living fence  Fodder: Bank  Fodder: Insect  Regional Crop

Climate: tropical, tropical highlands. Humidity: arid to semi-arid. It grows in deep soils where water is available. A succulent shrub, growing under desert and dry conditions. It grows in sandy, waste places. Pads are covered with tiny hairs, so that they feel like velvet or woolly. Carbon Farming Solutions - Cultivation: regional crop (Describes the non-destructive management systems that are used in cultivation) [1-1].

Carbon Farming

  • Agroforestry Services: Living fence  Simply managed rows of shrubs and trees.
  • Fodder: Bank  Fodder banks are plantings of high-quality fodder species. Their goal is to maintain healthy productive animals. They can be utilized all year, but are designed to bridge the forage scarcity of annual dry seasons. Fodder bank plants are usually trees or shrubs, and often legumes. The relatively deep roots of these woody perennials allow them to reach soil nutrients and moisture not available to grasses and herbaceous plants.
  • Fodder: Insect  Plants grown for useful fodder insects.
  • Regional Crop  These crops have been domesticated and cultivated regionally but have not been adopted elsewhere and are typically not traded globally, Examples in this broad category include perennial cottons and many nuts and staple fruits.

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

Type a value in the Celsius field to convert the value to Fahrenheit:

Fahrenheit:

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Plant Propagation

Seed - sow early spring in a very well-drained compost in a greenhouse. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first two winters. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Give the plants some protection from winter wet. Make sure you have some reserve plants in case those outdoors do not overwinter. Cuttings of leaf pads at any time in the growing season. Remove a pad from the plant and then leave it in a dry sunny place for a couple of days to ensure that the base is thoroughly dry and has begun to callous. Pot up into a sandy compost. Very easy, rooting quickly.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Velvet Tree Pear, Velvet opuntia, Nopal de san gabriel, Tree pear

Australia, Central America, Guatemala, Mexico, North America, USA

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Velvety tree pear (Opuntia tomentosa) is regarded as an environmental weed in Queensland and New South Wales, Australia.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : Status: Least Concern

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Cylindropuntia spp.ChollaPerennial2.0 8-12 SLMHSND304
Opuntia compressaEastern Prickly Pear, Prickly Pear CactusPerennial0.2 8-10 FLMND312
Opuntia dilleniiDillen prickly pear, Perennial1.0 10-12 MLMNDM303
Opuntia erinaceaMojave Prickly PearPerennial0.5 8-11  LMND202
Opuntia ficus-indicaPrickly Pear, Barbary figPerennial5.0 8-11  LMND323
Opuntia fragilisPrickly Pear, Brittle pricklypearPerennial0.1 7-10  LMND212
Opuntia howeyi Perennial0.0 -  LMND202
Opuntia imbricataTree CholaPerennial3.0 8-11  LMND202
Opuntia littoralisWestern Prickly PearPerennial0.6 -  LMND202
Opuntia macrorhizaTwist-Spine Prickly PearPerennial0.1 8-11  LMND202
Opuntia microdasysBunny Ears, Angel's-wingsPerennial0.6 7-10  LMND202
Opuntia phaeacanthaBastard Fig, Tulip pricklypearPerennial0.5 8-11  LMND212
Opuntia polyacanthaPlains Prickly Pear, El Paso pricklypear, Grizzlybear pricklypear, Navajo Bridge pricklypear, HairspPerennial0.2 3-7  LMND312
Opuntia ramosissimaBranched Pencil ChollaPerennial0.6 7-10  LMND302

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

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Salm-Dyck

Botanical References

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