Vascular Plants of the Gila Wilderness

Presented in Association with the
Western New Mexico University Department of Natural Sciences

Opuntia engelmannii Salm-Dyck ex Engelmann var. engelmannii
(Engelmann Prickly Pear, Cactus-apple)

Family: Cactaceae

Status: Native

Synonyms:
Opuntia discata Griffiths
Opuntia dillei Griffiths
Opuntia microcarpa Engelmann ex B.D. Jackson
Opuntia phaeacantha Engelmann var. discata (Griffiths) Benson
Opuntia riparia Griffiths
Opuntia tardospina Griffiths
Opuntia valida Griffiths

Opuntia engelmannii var. engelmannii grows in large clumps. It is similar to Opuntia chlorotica, but it does not have a single, upright trunk. Also, the individual cladodes ("pads") are often larger in Opuntia engelmannii. Ripe fruits of O. engelmannii are bright purple-red externally and internally, and very juicy. Both these two Opuntias can be found in similar habits, lower and mid elevations in rocky or sandy areas.
Please click on an image for a larger file.



Opuntia engelmannii, photo Richard Felger, Silver City, Gomez Peak, October 4, 2010



Opuntia engelmannii, photo Russ Kleinman, Burro Mtns., Bill Evans Lake, May 23, 2007



Opuntia engelmannii, detail of flower, photo Russ Kleinman, Burro Mtns., Bill Evans Lake, May 23, 2007



Opuntia engelmannii, mature fruit opened, photo Richard Felger, Silver City, Gomez Peak, October 4, 2010



Opuntia engelmannii, immature fruit opened, photo Russ Kleinman, Bill Norris & Scott Zager, Burro Mtns., CD Trail at south side of Jack's Peak, Nov. 9, 2008



Opuntia engelmannii, macro of opened immature fruit, photo Russ Kleinman, Bill Norris & Scott Zager, Burro Mtns., CD Trail at south side of Jack's Peak, Nov. 9, 2008



Opuntia engelmannii, field macro of areole, photo Russ Kleinman, Hwy 180N north of Market Street in Silver City, November 15, 2009



Opuntia engelmannii, field macro of glochids, photo Russ Kleinman, Hwy 180N north of Market Street in Silver City, November 15, 2009


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