Opuntia humifusa

(Rafinesque) Rafinesque

Med. Fl. 2: 247. 1830.

Common names: Eastern pricklypear
IllustratedEndemic
Basionym: Cactus humifusus Rafinesque Ann. Nat. 1: 15. 1820
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 4. Treatment on page 130. Mentioned on page 122, 125, 127, 132.

Shrubs, forming clumps or often prostrate, usually only 1 or 2 stem segments tall, to 0.5 m (except in Florida where they may erect and reach to 2+ m with short trunk), flattened to obovoid, sometimes from tuberlike rootstocks. Stem segments not disarticulating, dark or bright shiny green, wrinkling when stressed, circular to broadly oblong to obovate, 5–17.5 × 4–12 cm, fleshy, usually tuberculate, glabrous; areoles 4–6 per diagonal row across midstem segment, oval to circular, 2–4 mm diam., not raised, sometimes somewhat sunken; wool tan to brown. Spines often absent or 1–2 (–3) per areole, spreading, whitish to brownish, terete, straight, and usually stout, 25–60 mm; occasionally also 1 deflexed spine present. Glochids in dense crescent of adaxial edge of areole and in dense tuft overtopping crescent in age, yellow to redbrown, to 4 mm. Flowers: inner tepals pale to bright-yellow throughout, 20–30 mm diam.; filaments yellow to orange; anthers pale-yellow to cream; style and stigma lobes white. Fruits greenish, tardily becoming apricot to brownish red, elongate, 30–50 × 12–20 mm, fleshy, tapering at base; pulp green and sour, becoming reddish and sweet under ideal conditions; areoles 10–18. Seeds tan, 3.5–4.5 mm diam., thickish; girdle protruding to 1 mm.

Distribution

V4 242-distribution-map.gif

Ont., Ala., Ark., Conn., Del., Fla., Ga., Ill., Ind., Iowa, Kans., Ky., La., Mass., Md., Mich., Minn., Miss., Mo., N.C., N.J., N.Y., Nebr., Ohio, Okla., Pa., R.I., S.C., S.Dak., Tenn., Tex., Va., W.Va., Wis.

Discussion

Varieties 2 (2 in the flora).

Selected References

None.

Key

1 Shrubs forming clumps, often prostrate, usually only 1 or 2 stem segments tall, to 0.5 m Opuntia humifusa var. humifusa
1 Shrubs or small trees, erect, to 2 m Opuntia humifusa var. ammophilia

"thickish" is not a number.

... more about "Opuntia humifusa"
pale-yellow +  and cream +
cushionlike +
0.8 cm8 mm <br />0.008 m <br /> (1 cm10 mm <br />0.01 m <br />) +
0.7 cm7 mm <br />0.007 m <br /> (1 cm10 mm <br />0.01 m <br />) +
0.2 cm2 mm <br />0.002 m <br /> (0.4 cm4 mm <br />0.004 m <br />) +
deciduous +  and persistent +
0.3 cm3 mm <br />0.003 m <br /> (0.8 cm8 mm <br />0.008 m <br />) +
10 +  and 18 +
oval +  and circular +
0.1 cm1 mm <br />0.001 m <br /> (0.7 cm7 mm <br />0.007 m <br />) +
Donald J. Pinkava +
(Rafinesque) Rafinesque +
Cactus humifusus +
proliferating +
flattened +  and cylindric +
Eastern pricklypear +
Ont. +, Ala. +, Ark. +, Conn. +, Del. +, Fla. +, Ga. +, Ill. +, Ind. +, Iowa +, Kans. +, Ky. +, La. +, Mass. +, Md. +, Mich. +, Minn. +, Miss. +, Mo. +, N.C. +, N.J. +, N.Y. +, Nebr. +, Ohio +, Okla. +, Pa. +, R.I. +, S.C. +, S.Dak. +, Tenn. +, Tex. +, Va. +, W.Va. +  and Wis. +
yellow +  and orange +
15 cm150 mm <br />0.15 m <br /> (30 cm300 mm <br />0.3 m <br />) +
0.2 cm2 mm <br />0.002 m <br /> (15 cm150 mm <br />0.15 m <br />) +
spineless +  and stipitate +
burlike +  and spiny +
apricot;brownish red +
straight +
indehiscent +
persistent +, long +  and deciduous +
30mm;50mm +
proliferating +
tuberculate +  and smooth +
tapering +  and elongate +
1.2 cm12 mm <br />0.012 m <br /> (2 cm20 mm <br />0.02 m <br />) +
0.03 cm0.3 mm <br />3.0e-4 m <br /> (0.35 cm3.5 mm <br />0.0035 m <br />) +
0 cm0 mm <br />0 m <br /> (0.4 cm4 mm <br />0.004 m <br />) +
foveolate +  and reticulate +
2 cm20 mm <br />0.02 m <br /> (3 cm30 mm <br />0.03 m <br />) +
oblong +  and spatulate +
deciduous +
flattened +  and conic +
0 cm0 mm <br />0 m <br /> (3 cm30 mm <br />0.03 m <br />) +
succulent +
tuberculate +
fluted;spheric;depressed-spheric or club-shaped +
tinged color +
open +  and simple +
sometimes covered by outgrowths of proximal portion of style base or of flower tube wall +  and open +
persistent +  and deciduous +
ridgelike +  and nipple--shaped +
reddish +  and green +
sweet +  and sour +
3;2;2;30 +
tuberlike +
0.35 cm3.5 mm <br />0.0035 m <br /> (0.45 cm4.5 mm <br />0.0045 m <br />) +
0.2 cm2 mm <br />0.002 m <br /> (0.7 cm7 mm <br />0.007 m <br />) +
warped;generally circular;reniform flattened +
0 cm0 mm <br />0 m <br /> (50 cm500 mm <br />0.5 m <br />) +
Illustrated +  and Endemic +
not sheathed +
7.5 cm75 mm <br />0.075 m <br /> (17 cm170 mm <br />0.17 m <br />) +
whitish +  and brownish +
straight +
deciduous +  and persistent +
deflexed +  and spreading +
conspicuous +
with hairlike bristles +  and setose +
1 (?) +  and 2 (?) +
2.5 cm25 mm <br />0.025 m <br /> (6 cm60 mm <br />0.06 m <br />) +
hard +  and rigid +
decurrent +
winged +  and unsegmented +
tuberculate +  and smooth +
not disarticulating +
60 cm600 mm <br />0.6 m <br /> (120 cm1,200 mm <br />1.2 m <br />) +
green +, shiny +, bright +  and dark +
5 cm50 mm <br />0.05 m <br /> (17.5 cm175 mm <br />0.175 m <br />) +
tuberculate +  and wrinkling +
4 cm40 mm <br />0.04 m <br /> (12 cm120 mm <br />0.12 m <br />) +
segmented +
woody +  and succulent +
adventitious +
tuberlike +
epipetric +  and epiphytic +
Opuntia humifusa +
species +
dull +  and glossy +
yellow +  and paler +
segmented +
crescent +
terrestrial;epiphytic or epipetric +
erect +  and trailing +
2 (?) +  and 1 (?) +
tan +  and brown +