Opuntia aurea

Baxter, Cactus and Succulent Journal (U.S.) 5(6): 489, 1933

Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium

Details

Opuntia aurea grows in southern UT and perhaps northern AZ. It is prostrate and forms irregularly sprawling plants to about 3-ft across. A single pad may grow upright now and then. The plants are spineless or have a few spines to multiple spines. Spines may be in the distal areoles only or on the sides of the pad too. Excessively spiny plants are presumed to represent introgression from adjacent species, including O. nicholii. The cladodes are often oval but may also be broadly obovate up to 4(6)-inches long. Cladodes have a thick look. Areoles may be slightly sunken. Flowers are pale-yellow, yellow, apricot-pink, and even magenta. Seeds are often round and up to 1/3 inch in diameter or a bit more. Fruits typically have no spines, but may have one or more at the apex. See the original description. Opuntia aurea is hexaploid.

Special thanks to the Cactus and Succulent Society Journal for permission to reproduce the original description.