Old Mexico

(Opuntia gomei)

A close up of a pad of Old Mexico cactus.

Old Mexico is one of the Opuntia in the specimen beds between the café and solar field. It has bright green pads (stems) with vivid yellow spines (leaves) and it makes a wonderful accent plant in gardens. The spines will stand straight and may be accompanied by glochids, which are small barbed spines that appear like fur. The plant needs plenty of room to grow as it branches wide, sprouting new pads to create a large shrub appearance.

Old Mexico is sometimes classified as lindheimeri (Britton and Rose) and has some of its characteristics, but it is distinct on its own, and intermediates have not been identified.

Blooms are bright yellow and funnel-shaped. Fruit is dark purple, and like other Opuntias, this plant is a food plant.

It is common near the Rio Grande delta and some inland areas of southern Texas.


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