Opuntia santa-rita

(Griffiths & Hare) Rose

Smithsonian Misc. Collect. 52: 195. 1909.

Common names: Purple pricklypear
Basionym: Opuntia chlorotica var. santa-rita Griffiths & Hare New Mexico Agric. Exp. Sta. Bull. 60: 64. 1906 (as santa rita)
Synonyms: Opuntia violacea var. santa-rita (Griffiths & Hare) L. D. Benson
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 4. Mentioned on page 137.

Shrubs or trees, with short trunk, erect, to 2 m. Stem segments not easily detached, green or, when under stress, lavender to red-purple at least around areoles, flattened, subcircular, sometimes ovate or obovate sometimes wider than long, 10–20 × 9.5–20 cm, thin, nearly smooth, glabrous; areoles 6–8 (–9) per diagonal row across midstem segment, obovate or elliptic to subcircular, sometimes reniform, 3–3.5 × 2–2.5 mm; wool tan to brown. Spines 0–1 (–2) per areole, usually few along margins of stem segments, deflexed to erect, pale-yellow to horn colored (aging reddish-brown), straight to slightly curved, acicular, terete, the longest to 40 mm, usually shorter. Glochids dense in crescent at adaxial edge of areole, nearly encircling areoles, and in subapical tuft, of even height, yellow to tan, aging brown, to 5 mm. Flowers: inner tepals yellow throughout, fading orangish, 25–45 mm; filaments pale-yellow throughout or pale-yellow proximally, white distally; anthers pale-yellow; style white; stigma lobes light green. Fruits purplish, green inside, obovoid to barrel-shaped, 25–45 × 20–30 mm, fleshy, glabrous, spineless; areoles 34–44 (–54). Seeds tan, 3.5–5 × 3–4 mm, sides convex, often bearing bumps; girdle protruding 0.5 mm. 2n = 22.


Phenology: Flowering spring (Apr-early Jun).
Habitat: Deserts, grasslands, oak woodlands, flats, slopes, sandy to rocky soils
Elevation: 700-1600 m

Discussion

Opuntia santa-rita has been reported for New Mexico and Texas, but I have seen no supporting specimens. Opuntia santa-rita is commonly confused with spineless O. macrocentra, but has yellow inner tepals with red basal portions. In southern Arizona, O. santa-rita hybridizes with O. chlorotica; that hybrid, with a chromosome number of 2n = 22, apparently accounts for L. D. Benson’s (1982) inclusion in the United States of Mexico’s O. gosseliniana F. A. C. Weber.

Selected References

None.

Lower Taxa

None.

No values specified.

... more about "Opuntia santa-rita"
pale-yellow +
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 />) +
deciduous +  and persistent +
0.3 cm3 mm <br />0.003 m <br /> (0.35 cm3.5 mm <br />0.0035 m <br />) +
34 +  and 44 +
reniform +, elliptic +  and subcircular +
0.2 cm2 mm <br />0.002 m <br /> (0.25 cm2.5 mm <br />0.0025 m <br />) +
Donald J. Pinkava +
(Griffiths & Hare) Rose +
Opuntia chlorotica var. santa-rita +
proliferating +
flattened +  and cylindric +
Purple pricklypear +
Ariz. +  and Mexico (Sonora) +
700-1600 m +
white +  and pale-yellow throughout or pale-yellow +
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 />) +
burlike +  and spiny +
green;purplish +
straight +
indehiscent +
persistent +, long +  and deciduous +
25mm;45mm +
proliferating +
tuberculate +  and smooth +
obovoid +  and barrel-shaped +
2 cm20 mm <br />0.02 m <br /> (3 cm30 mm <br />0.03 m <br />) +
0.5 cm5 mm <br />0.005 m <br /> (?) +
foveolate +  and reticulate +
Deserts, grasslands, oak woodlands, flats, slopes, sandy to rocky soils +
oblong +  and spatulate +
2.5 cm25 mm <br />0.025 m <br /> (4.5 cm45 mm <br />0.045 m <br />) +
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 +
deflexed;erect +
open +  and simple +
sometimes covered by outgrowths of proximal portion of style base or of flower tube wall +  and open +
persistent +  and deciduous +
Flowering spring (Apr-early Jun). +
ridgelike +  and nipple--shaped +
Smithsonian Misc. Collect. +
3;2;2;30 +
tuberlike +
0.04 cm0.4 mm <br />4.0e-4 m <br /> (1.2 cm12 mm <br />0.012 m <br />) +
0.35 cm3.5 mm <br />0.0035 m <br /> (0.5 cm5 mm <br />0.005 m <br />) +
warped;generally circular;reniform flattened +
0.3 cm3 mm <br />0.003 m <br /> (0.4 cm4 mm <br />0.004 m <br />) +
not sheathed +
7.5 cm75 mm <br />0.075 m <br /> (17 cm170 mm <br />0.17 m <br />) +
pale-yellow +
deciduous +  and persistent +
conspicuous +
with hairlike bristles +  and setose +
0 (?) +  and 1 (?) +
terete +  and acicular +
0 cm0 mm <br />0 m <br /> (4 cm40 mm <br />0.04 m <br />) +
hard +  and rigid +
decurrent +
winged +  and unsegmented +
tuberculate +  and smooth +
60 cm600 mm <br />0.6 m <br /> (120 cm1,200 mm <br />1.2 m <br />) +
lavender +  and red-purple +
10 cm100 mm <br />0.1 m <br /> (20 cm200 mm <br />0.2 m <br />) +
nearly smooth +  and tuberculate +
segmented +
woody +  and succulent +
brown +, yellow +  and tan +
0 cm0 mm <br />0 m <br /> (0.5 cm5 mm <br />0.005 m <br />) +
Opuntia violacea var. santa-rita +
adventitious +
tuberlike +
epipetric +  and epiphytic +
Opuntia santa-rita +
species +
dull +  and glossy +
yellow +  and paler +
segmented +
tree +  and shrub +
terrestrial;epiphytic or epipetric +
tan +  and brown +