Opuntia cochenillifera 'Variegata'
Accepted Scientific Name
Opuntia cochenillifera (L.) Mill.
Warm Hand Cactus, Velvet Cactus
Nopalea cochenillifera f. variegata, Nopalea cochenillifera 'Variegata', Opuntia cochenillifera f. variegata
Opuntia cochenillifera 'Variegata', also known as Nopalea cochenillifera 'Variegata', is an attractive, shrubby or treelike cactus with a broadly cylindrical trunk and branches composed of variegated, flat, elliptic to narrowly obovate joints. It is smaller and grows slower than the normal form. The stem segments are green with irregular cream to greenish-yellow markings and have small white wooly areoles without spines or nearly so.
Opuntia cochenillifera 'Variegata is a form of Opuntia cochenillifera selected for its variegated stems.
USDA hardiness zones 9a to 11b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Despite the large variety of species within the Opuntia genus, different species 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, these plants can generally be planted outside, left alone, and enjoyed.
These cacti will grow just fine in a garden but can also be grown in pots. To repot, ensure the soil is dry, remove the pot, and remove the old soil. After treating any cuts with fungicide, place the cactus in a new pot and backfill it with potting soil. As with a new cutting, ensure not to water a newly repotting Prickly Pear for a brief period to avoid rotting its roots.
Opuntia can propagate either by cuttings or by seed. To propagate by cuttings, sever pads from a plant and let them dry so that the wounds heal. Then place the plants in dry soil and refrain from watering them until they begin to grow to avoid rotting them.
See more at How to Grow and Care for Opuntia.
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