Opuntia ficus indica "Luther Burbank" Spineless Species Hybrid
Hybrid variety Opuntia Ficus indica-Var.'Burbank Spineless' Is a spineless variety most commonly used for grafting but can also be used as a landscape plant for screening in backgrounds or as an interesting focal plant with attractive orange to yellowish blooms. Easy to grow, pads can be rooted from cuttings. Likes full sun and good draining soil. If given rich soil and abundant water it will grow faster. Can be drought tolerante once established and hardy to 20F. Has attractive orange-yellowish blooms followed by tasty edible fruit (cactus apples) which can be peeled and eaten out of hand or made into jam. Growth is long lanky narrow stems with almost zero-no spines.Typically it grows to 5-6ft realitively fast (within a few seasons) if not top cut but it can grow much taller over several seasons.
Specimen Size: Approx. 14" tall by 6" in diameter.
Fruit; Edible the fruit of Opuntia Ficus indica-Var.'Burbank Spineless' averages 1-1/2"+ in diameter and 4 to 5" long. Exterior skin is yellowish to light pink when ripe. Pulp is golden yellow and sweet. The fruit has several flushes beginning in spring and is ripe by May, then again by July-August. Depending on weather at your location you can get a 3rd flush ripe by Oct./Nov.
Edible stems; The stems are also edible, best to use the more tender tip stems. Removal of the exterior skin and boiling the flesh, then cut in strips for Nopales salad.