The Committee of Secrecy of the East India Company offered 2,000 [pounds sterling] to facilitate the project, and Anderson was asked to organize a nopalry, or Opuntia garden, at Madras, to provide cochineal insects with a ready-made habitat once they arrived from the Americas.
The Madras nopalry thus had expanded, within two years, to a size sufficient to provide cacti as food for several hundred famine victims, and by early 1792, taking advantage of the end of the Third Anglo-Mysore War, Anderson was sending Opuntia cuttings to a number of locations throughout southern India, where small nopalries were to be established with a view, eventually, to spreading the cultivation of the cacti to rural villages.
William Roxburgh received a handful of insects from Nielson, but these reproduced, and by the summer monsoon of 1795, a fifth generation was colonizing the Company's nopalry. (54) "In the ...
(84) Harvesting cochineal was tedious, labor-intensive work performed in Mexico by entire families, who usually tended only a small nopalry as part of an integrated, multi-crop system of horticulture.
(91) James Anderson died in 1810, but even as early as 1808 his nopalry at Madras was an abandoned, overgrown corner of the Company's Garden, where Maria Graham, a young naval officer's wife, was shown its last surviving Opuntia by the caretaker.