WATCH YOUR STEP! Especially that first one out the door this morning – it’s going to be gusty from the other direction, as northwest winds take over and cool us off. With your head down against the gales, you might happen upon our star for the day – the prickly pear cactus. It’s one of a handful of species that grow in ND and what we talk about in today’s Three Things.
(Featured Photo: A prickly pear cactus found while pheasant hunting in western North Dakota. Simonson Photo)
WEATHER (Bismarck Forecast):
Today: Thu 10/12 – Jacket Day. Hi 62, Lo 42, Winds NW@20, G30.
Tomorrow: Fri 10/13 – Feelin’ Lucky. Hi 56, Lo 32, Winds S@7.
SOLUNAR (Bismarck Times):
Sunrise: 7:58AM Sunset: 7:00PM
Moonrise: Fol. Day Moonset 3:23PM
Overhead: 7:41AM Underfoot: 8:09PM
Moon Phase: Last Quarter @ 7:25 AM
EDGE HOUR. 7:30-8:30AM. Before it gets too gusty, get on stand and catch that big buck making his way back to cover in today’s Edge Hour. With the quarter moon overhead, and the worst winds to come later, sunrise will be key to your success.
JUST NEEDLIN’ YA! There are five species of cactus that grow in North Dakota, and in the western portion of the state, they are some of the hardiest plants one can find growing in rugged, arid stretches of land. Their needles often find a mark in the paw pads of grouse and pheasant hunters’ dogs, so keep an eye out for them when you head out after upland game and watch Rover for a limp!
GOOD FOR YA! Growing throughout North America, prickly pear cactus has long been used by Mexican and Native American tribes for centuries to treat a variety of maladies from diabetes, pain and burns to high cholesterol. There are proven points to these natural treatments with prickly pear, as according to a number of studies, it has anti-inflammatory agents, and has been shown in some instances to help regulate blood sugar.
SEW SHARP. Prickly pear juice, which takes on a reddish or purple hue was used as dye by native tribes throughout its range. The spines (obviously) were used as needles as well. The meaty pads of young cactus were eaten in many ways by native tribes by first rubbing the spines off in gravel or sand, and they could be mashed into a sauce, or boiled down into a syrup.
Make like a cactus…and Stay Sharp!