Monday, September 29, 2014

Harvesting my prickly pear ... (you can grow that!)

This week, I harvested the fruit from my prickly pear (with the help of some salad tongs!), following the instructions on this page (which has a nice recipe).

I found it very easy to take the fruits (called tunas) off of the plant -- they simply twist off -- but much harder to clean them properly. They tend to spin in the tongs, and I ended up having to hold them with one hand and scrub them with the other. Of course, now I'm picking tiny needles out of my fingertips, but ... ;)

If I were to do this again, I would get some different tongs (mine are like the ones in the article I linked to above) and/or wear some thick household gloves set aside for the purpose.

The fruits really are lovely once picked, and to me they taste just a bit like strawberries. I'm looking forward to making some sorbet or ice cream with them this evening.

Planting this was as easy as putting it in the ground (it was much smaller then!). I've put some landscape cloth around it so I don't have to weed it later, and eventually I'll fill it in with gravel, once I find the kind I want.

It doesn't require any maintenance, watering, or anything else. When it gets a bit bigger, I might try harvesting some of the pads and report back on them. :)