Opuntia rufida is part of the Cactaceae family and is native to the Big Bend area of Texas and parts of Mexico, it is sometimes called ‘Blind pricklypear’ as the glochids can blind cattle. Stems are jointed into fleshy round pads known as cladodes and are covered in rust coloured glochids (hair-like spines).
Dislodged glochids can be very irritating to the skin so be careful when handling this plant.
Height: Approximately 18cm from base of pot.
Secrets to success
Temperature: Up to 38°C in summer and winter temperatures between 7-13°C - this will aid flowering.
Light: Bright direct light all year except winter, when this plant needs to be moved to a place with partial sun.
Watering: Water in spring and summer, allowing the substrate to dry out between waterings, do not water in winter.
Air humidity: Low humidity; 10-30%
Fertilising: Feed monthly during spring summer - dilute fertiliser to half the recommended dosage.
Potting mix: A very fast draining cactus potting mix.
This plant is considered non-toxic, however glochids are irritating to the skin.