Opuntiawoodsii is a unique, red-flowered medium-sized Opuntia from southern Utah and northern Arizona.
Opuntiawoodsii has been proposed to be synonymous with numerous other prickly pears. It has even been proposed to be a pink- or red-flowered hybrid of various parents. But O.woodsii is a distinct cactus; it is a self-reproducing species and is not a hybrid population.
O.woodsii is a medium-sized Opuntia, sedom reaching more than 25-30 cm in height. Nevertheless, it is not a small plant. It is typically a stiffly spreading or ascending bushy plant. However, it does grow low and spreads along the ground in cold winter climates. Cladodes may be round but are more often oval or obovate, narrowing toward the base. Areoles in the upper half of the cladodes have (1)2 to 4 spines that may stand out from the surface. The white spines sometimes have brown bases extending half way up the spine.
Flowers are salmon, pink, or even bright orange-red.
O woodsii grows in gravelly or rocky soils. See the original, very brief, citation.
O.woodsii is an excellent garden plant due to its medium size, reddish flowers, and white spines.