Opuntia woodsii

Backeberg, Descriptiones Cactacearum Novarum 10, 1956

Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium; Herbarium

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Opuntia woodsii has been proposed to be synonymous with numerous other taxa including: Opuntia angustata, O. arizonica, O camanchica, O. canada, O. engelmannii var. cyclodes, O. gilvescens, O.  mojavensis , O. phaeacantha var. brunnea, O. phaeacantha var. mojavensis, and O. superbospina. It has even been proposed to be a pink/red-flowered hybrid of various parents. But O. woodsii is distinct from these taxa; it is a self-reproducing species and is not a hybrid population. Cladodes may be round but are more often oval or obovate, narrowing toward the base. It is typically a stiffly spreading or ascending bushy plant. While it is smaller than O. engelmannii, it is not a small plant. However, it does grow low and spreads along the ground in cold winter climates. Areoles in the upper half of the cladodes have (1)2 to 4 spines that may stand out from the surface. Some of the white spines may have brown bases extending half way up the spine. Flowers are salmon, pink, or even bright orange-red. O woodsii grows in rocky soils in southern UT and northern AZ. See the original, very brief, citation.

 

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