Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Cactus Ornamental Plants

Posted: 09 Mar 2011 05:47 PM PST

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Cactus is the name given to members of the flowering plant family Cactaceae.

Cactus can grow in a long time without water. Cactus commonly found in dry areas (desert). The word is plural for cactus kakti. Cactus has roots that long to find water and widen the absorption of water in the soil. Cactus absorbed water stored in the trunk space. Cactus also have leaves that change shape into thorns so as to reduce the evaporation of water through the leaves. Therefore, the cactus can grow in a long time without water.

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The discovery of the cactus is believed to have started long before the Europeans discovered the New World. However, a variety of information about these plants is lost when the colonization by Spain. The first reference on a cactus plant found in the 16th century in chapter 16 of the book Historia general y natural de las Indias (1535). The author of the book, Hernandez de Oviedo y Valdez described the cactus as a plant that has thorns distinctive and unique fruit. Most species of cactus comes from North America, South, and Central. Cactus genus first imported into Europe is Melocactus. A botaniawan from Sweden, Carl Linnaeus, to give the name of cactus that is taken from the Greek Κακτος kaktos. In classical Greek, the word has meaning thorny wild plants.


Included in the group cactus succulent plants because it is able to store water supplies in the trunk. Stem of this plant can accommodate a large volume of water and have varying shapes. In order to survive in an arid desert region, the cactus has a specific metabolism. The plant was opened stomatanya at night when the weather is cooler than summer. At night, the cactus is also taking CO2 from the environment and save it in the vacuole to be used when photosynthesis takes place (mainly in the afternoon). Many species of cactus that has a long and sharp thorns. Duri is a modification of the leaf and used as protection against herbivores. Cactus flower that function in the reproductive growth of the armpit or areola and attached to the plant and have no flower stalk.

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Use cactus for human beings

Various kinds of cactus have long used human beings as a source of food, one of which is Opuntia. This species is much cultivated for its fruit and young stems. Fruit Opuntia many processed into jam, called queso de tuna Meanwhile, the young stems, known as Opuntia nopalitos will be skinned and fried, steamed, or processed into pickles in vinegar, sour-sweet. Today, Opuntia is also still used as animal feed, cosmetics, and medicines. Formerly, Carnegiea gigantean cactus species used as raw material for the manufacture of bread flour. However, this flour is no longer used because the community is more like flour than corn. The roots of Echinocactus platycanthus also processed in the liquid sugar to be candy. Part woody roots or vascular vessels containing lignin from the cactus is also used as building materials and fuel .

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