Considering Nopales for Arid Land Specialty Crops

Nopales, or Prickly Pear cactus, include numerous species of the genus¬†Opuntia which thrive in poor soils and arid lands. These cacti can be grown and harvested for their tunas, or fruit, and for their pads.¬† They thrive in deeper, well drained soils, and can tolerate pH levels as high as 7.8.¬† ¬†California researchers have investigated … Read more

What Exactly is a Biological Soil Crust?

Soil Crusts are Tiny Communities¬†that Can Help You Build Healthy¬†Soil Did you ever walk out in the desert following a rainstorm? ¬†If so, you may have noticed a thin black or green layer ¬†on the surface of the soil. ¬† Of course. you may have noticed¬†a sprinkling of dry, black powder on the soil surface … Read more

Remembering the Past With Yerba de Alonso Garcia


¬†Did Native Americans Name Good Plants after Good People? My friend¬†Andrea once told me that early Americans, like the Navajo and the Apache, named plants with beneficial properties after people they liked. It was sort of a way to compliment the good people in their lives.¬† She added that snakes, flies, and mosquitoes might be … Read more