Opuntia subulata crestata

Name: Opuntia subulata crestata
Family: Cactacee
Country of origin: Peru
Pot diameter: 12 cm
Blooming season: late spring 

History and curiosities: Opuntia is much loved by cochineal, an insect from which is extracted carminic acid, the bright red dye used in the food and cosmetic industry.

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The name Opuntia has been known since ancient times, as proved by Pliny the Elder who already knew this plant and described the Mediterranean species. However, the plant that we know today mostly has a Peruvian origin. Opuntia Subulata Crestata too comes from South America: as all cacti, it has fleshy leaves scattered with small spines, with a characteristic and very fascinating undulating pattern. This is a mutation occurred following the attack of insects which devoured the tips of growing leaves; the plant replied to this assault by creating in a short time a new type of leaf, which began to curl as it did not find enough room to stretch out. The unusual appearance turns this crested variety in a sort of vegetal jewel, ideal to be grown indoor and to be placed in points where it can attract the attentions of guests with its unique and refined lines. As this is not a demanding plant, Opuntia Subulata Crestata needs no special care: watering should be moderate and done only in spring and summer. As to temperature, this cactus loves hot weathers and can therefore perfectly adapt itself to indoor life.

Data sheet
Periodo fiorituraapr - giu
CuriositàL'Opuntia è molto amata dalla cocciniglia, insetto da cui viene estratto l'acido carminico, una tintura rosso vivo usata nell'industria alimentare e cosmetica.

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