Consolea rubescens (Salm-Dyck ex DC.) Lem.
Road Kill Cactus
Opuntia rubescens, Cactus rubescens, Consolea catacantha, Consolea guanicana, Consolea moniliformis subsp. rubescens, Opuntia guanicana
Consolea rubescens is a nearly spineless cactus that eventually becomes an up to 20 foot (6 m) tall tree, with a trunk up to 6 inches (15 cm) in diameter. Its flattened bumpy paddles give it the common name "Road Kill Cactus" for obvious reasons. It even looks like it has tire tracks across it. Flowers are orange and appear in spring.
USDA hardiness zone 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Though the large variety of species within the Opuntia genus means different types of prickly pears may need slightly different care, all are desert cacti that need lots of sun, lots of light, and very little water. If you live in a hot, arid area, particularly the American Southwest, these plants can generally be planted outside, left alone, and enjoyed.
Though Opuntia will grow just fine in a garden, they can be grown in pots as well. To repot, ensure the soil is dry, remove the pot and knock away the old soil. After treating any cuts with fungicide, place the prickly pear in a new pot and backfill it with potting soil. As with a new cutting, make sure not to water a newly repotting prickly pear for a brief period to avoid rotting its roots.
See more at How to Grow and Care for Opuntia.
Consolea rubescens is native to Florida and the Caribbean.
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