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Opuntia

This plant was in an area that burned very hot and all the plants were wasted to charcoal. However, some roots had to survive, because this Opuntia is growing a new pad from the roots. Very impressive recovery from the High Park Fire.

This plant was almost cooked to death, but is coming back. The rock is almost in the same condition as medium burned liken rocks in the area, but this area appears to have been hotter. It is very exciting to see a plant like this recovering from the High Park Fire.

This Opuntia plant was in the path of the Colorado High Park Fire. From other plants in this area it is suffering a about a mid range degree of damage, and more photos of Opuntia will follow to show extremes on either side of this plants recovery. The Liken on the rocks is toasted to a medium brown and this is being used as a visual reference to establish a sort of fire damage and recovery middle value.

This plant suffered, burned spines, skin and severe damage to the stems. It is putting out new pads from the remaining live parts of the stems near the base of the plant.

This is a beautiful plant and shows how well Opuntia has evolved to recover from fire in this mountain region of Colorado.

Today was a great day to plant a few Cholla plants. I bought a few plants in a Colorado greenhouse last fall. Last fall one pot was planted outdoors while the rest were kept in a window in an unheated room. The one planted outside was under snow most of the winter and did great, and so did the plants in the unheated room. Now they are all planted outdoors together, and should grow into a great formation. Some Opuntia pads were also planted outdoors. This is the best time of year to plant Opuntia and Cholla type plants because it is just before they go through a rapid growth period. When they are planted in the early spring they will grow new pads and lots of new roots too, which will help them become well established plants in one growing season.