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Prickly Pear

Opuntia ficus-indica


A shrub that grows up to 5 m in height, forming a sturdy trunk with age. Leaves are fleshy, entire with needles and irritant hairs. Flowers are about 7 cm long, yellow or orange, and are highly attractive to pollinators, especially bees. The fruit is a berry, containing several hard seeds embedded in a tasty pulp. In Malta, a liqueur called "Bajtra" is made from this fruit. The shrub is also used as a natural agricultural fence surrounding crop fields or animal enclosures.


Many grow in dry arid and rocky places.


Maltese name: Bajtra tax-Xewk

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Spotted by

Malta, Malta

Spotted on May 14, 2013
Submitted on May 15, 2013

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