Some attention is being given to the value of opuntias or prickly pears as fodder plants to be raised on those dry parts of our continent where little else will grow. This attention comes from some recently published analysis of the pulp of the Tunya species, by Prof. E. W. Stewart, of the Geneva, N. Y., experimental station. He finds that the analysis of the dry substance of the leaves gives the following:

Ash............

22.79

Albuminoids..........

6.81

Crude fiber............

14.99

Other carbohydrates.............

52.92

Fat (other extract)..............

2.49

Total.......................

100.00

Probably

Digestible.

Water.............

88.00

. • •

Ash...........

2.73

........

Albuminoids.......

0.82

0.65

Crude fiber...........

1.80

6.30

other carbohydrates............

6.35

Fat..............

0.30

0.20

Total.......................

100 00

7.15

Nutritive ratio, 1 to 10.4, or similar to green corn-fodder. The station also made an analysis of the ash, which contained the following:

Phosphoric acid.............

1.10

Potash............

13 88

Soda..................

10.56

Lime...............

37.28

Magnesia.............

4.20

(By dif.) sand and silica..............

32.98

Total.........................

100.00

The difficulty in bringing the plant into use, would be the numerous small spines with which the plant is beset. In parts of Mexico where the plant is largely used for cattle feed, we believe the sections are rapidly drawn through fire, which so singes the spines that they are inoffensive. But this would be a slow process for the average American to engage in, and probably a "crusher" would be equally effective. Nothing, not even a cactus, can be more offensively prickly than the Gorse or Furze of Northern Europe. But by running it through a "Gorse-crusher," it makes admirable cattle food.

It is more than likely that, with a little attention to the matter, both food and drink could be had from these plants in sufficient certainty and abundance to make what are now "howling deserts" habitable for hundreds of men with their domestic animals.