Plant Image
Plant - summer
Little Thumb Butte - Sue Smith


Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Opuntia engelmannii - cactus apple

Synonyms: Opuntia phaeacantha var. discata
Other Common Names: Tuna, nopal, purple fruit prickly pear, prickly pear cactus
Plant Form: Cacti

Family: Cactaceae


   
 
line decor
  Home   Plant Communities Plant List Search Forbs Search Grasses Search Woody Plants Additional Resources About this Website
line decor
 

Click on Any Image for a Larger View

Plant - summer
Granite Mtn - Tr 261
Marv Mazur
Leaves
Granite Mtn - Tr 261
Marv Mazur
Flowers
Granite Mtn - Tr 261
Marv Mazur
Flower buds
Granite Mtn - Tr 261
Marv Mazur
Fruit
Little Thumb Butte
Sue Smith
Plant Description

Origin: Native   Similar Species: O. phaeacantha, O. macrocentra
General Desc: A wide, spreading cactus to 15 feet in diameter. Has circular to oblong pads (stems) up to 10 inches long and 1/2 inch thick. Color is green to blue-green. The pads are connected to each other by brittle joints.
Identification notes: Short white spines and many glochids distinguish this from similar Opuntia sp.
Height: 4 to 6 feet     Width: 10 to 15 feet

Habitat

Plant Communities: Interior Chaparral, Semidesert Grasslands, Pinyon Juniper Woodland
Elevation: 1500 - 7500 feet

Flowers

Color: Yellow     Flowering Period: Apr - Jun
Description: Yellow, orange or red to 3-1/4 inches wide. Blooms appear on edge of flat pads.

Stems

Stem Color: Dull yellowish green or bluish green     Number of Stems: Need value     Stem Shape: Need value     Stems Segmented: U     Stem Surface: Need value
Stem Description: Stems are segmented into pads, each pad 6 to 16 inches long and 4 to 16 inches wide, oblong, circular in shape, with short spine. Pads are firmly attached.

Areoles (structures unique to cacti, found on the stems, areas from which spines, flowers and fruits emerge)

Areole Description:
Spine Color: Ash grey to white     Spines Hooked: U    
Spine Description: The spines (leaves) grow to 3 inches long, either flattened, curved, or straight. The areas where spines develop have brown or yellowish barbed bristles.


Fruit

Fruit Color: Red   
Fruit Notes: The red to purplish, pear-shaped fruit to 3 inches long and 1-1/2 inches in diameter grows along the edge of the pads and is very attractive, edible, nutritious and juicy.


  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
840 Rodeo Dr #C
Prescott, AZ 86305
(928) 445-6590
Version 7.0  
http://cals.arizona.edu/yavapaiplants/SpeciesDetailCactus.php  
Last Updated: May 10, 2017  
Content Questions/Comments: Email Jeff Schalau  
Legal Disclaimer