Opuntia angustata

Opuntia angustata
Opuntia angustata

Engelmann & J. M. Bigelow, Proceedings of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences 3: 292, 1856/1857

Syntype; Painting (Smithsonian Institution); Holotype (Opuntia magnarenensis); Lectotype (Opuntia magnarenensis); Drawing (The Botany of the Expedition, 1856, plate VII)

Original Citation (O. angustata)

Original Citation (O. magnarenensis)

What is Opuntia angustata?

Opuntia angustata is a poorly understood or documented prickly pear cactus reported from northwestern Arizona and adjacent portions of Nevada and California.


The photos presented here represent our concept of this Opuntia. O. angustata is larger and woodier/stiffer than O. phaeacantha but is smaller than O. engelmannii to which it seems related. Spines are often long and chalky white.

Flowers are yellow. 

Ploidy is unknown. 

Other Notes

Britton and Rose reported that the true type specimen for this Opuntia is from the bottoms of the Bill Williams River in AZ. Engelmann and Bigelow described a prickly pear cactus that had narrow cladodes. O. angustata and O. riparia are similar and may in fact represent the same taxon. O. riparia occurs further south (near Tucson, AZ and south). Also, we interpret O. angustata to be the same as O. magnarenenesis described by Griffiths from Owens, AZ (near Wikieup, AZ), which does not have especially narrow cladodes. 

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