Opuntia polyacantha Haw.
  • Suppl. Pl. Succ.
  • Starvation pricklypear

Cite taxon page as 'WFO (2020): Opuntia polyacantha Haw. Published on the Internet;http://www.worldfloraonline.org/taxon/wfo-0001287039. Accessed on: 02 Dec 2020'

General Information

Shrubs, low, 10-25 cm, with ± prostrate branches. Stem segments not easily detached, green, elliptic to narrowly to broadly obovate to circular, 4-27 × 2-18 cm, low tuberculate; areoles 4-14 per diagonal row across midstem segment, subcircular, 3-6 mm; wool tan to brown. Spines at all or only distal areoles of stem segment, terete to flattened, stout to acicular to bristlelike, straight to curling, of 1 or 2 kinds; if 1 kind: 0-18 per areole, spreading and curling in various directions, sometimes straight, erect, ascending to deflexed, yellow to dark brown to black, turning gray, pink-gray to gray-brown, longest (35-)40-90(-185) mm; if ± 2 kinds: major spines (0-)1-5, reflexed to porrect, yellow-brown to brown to gray, longest 20-150 mm; minor spines (0-)5-11, deflexed, white to white-gray, longest 4-16 mm. Glochids inconspicuous, in narrow, tidy crescent at adaxial edge of areole or in broad, brushy crescent and tuft, yellow to reddish, aging brown, to 10 mm. Flowers: inner tepals yellow to magenta throughout, 25-40 mm; filaments white, yellow, or red to magenta (flowers may superficially appear bicolored); anthers yellow; style white to pale pink; stigma lobes green. Fruits tan to brown, ± cylindric, 15-45 × 12-25 mm, dry at maturity, glabrous, sometimes burlike; areoles 10-33, each or only distal areoles bearing 3-16 spines, 4-20 mm. Seeds tan to gray, flattened, warped, oblong to subcircular, 3-7 × 2-4 mm; girdle protruding 1-2 mm.

  • Provided by: [C].Flora of North America @ efloras.org
    • Source: [
    • 1
    • ]. 

    "A similar western sp. with 6–10 spines per areole and dry frs, has been reported e. to Wis. and Mo."

  • Provided by: [B].New York Botanical Garden
    • Source: [
    • 2
    • ]. 

    Other Local Names

    Starvation pricklypear


     Information From

    World Flora Online Data. 2017.
    • A CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0).
    New York Botanical Garden
    Descriptions of plants should be attributed to the full citation for each individual article, chapter or book that is the source for each record, which should include the authors of original publication.
    • B Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
    Flora of North America @ efloras.org
    'Flora of North America @ eFloras (2008). Published on the Internet http://www.efloras.org/flora_page.aspx?flora_id=1 [accessed August 2016]' Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
    • C Flora of North America Association
    World Flora Online consortium
    World Flora Online Data. 2018.
    • D CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0).
    International Union for Conservation of Nature v.3
    IUCN 2019. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2019-1.
    • E See IUCN Terms and conditions of use http://www.iucnredlist.org/info/terms-of-use
    International Union for Conservation of Nature
    IUCN 2016. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2016-2
    • F All Rights Reserved