Apparently Peelee Island isn’t the only place in Ontario where Prickly Pear Cactus can thrive! I have a glorious patch of this southern Ontario rarity right in my own backyard. I am truly amazed every year when it bounces back after our long, harsh, Canadian winter. In the spring, the poor plant reminds me of a deflated balloon – all flaccid, wrinkly, and discoloured. But as the warm weather takes over, this beautiful ever-expanding patch of cactus fills right in. It doesn’t always flower, but we have been graced the last two years with stunning golden blossoms.
As you can see, there are many other plants thriving around the patch. As much as I would like to thin out the cactus’ surroundings to tidy up the garden bed, I don’t dare go near it. I have thrown away countless pairs of garden gloves while attempting to remove a simple weed or two that has popped up within the patch. The thorns are plentiful, hair-like, and impossible to get out! Yikes!! Sometimes you just have to let nature be.