IUCN threat status:

Least Concern (LC)

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Opuntia engelmannii

Common Name: cactus apple

Location: Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts

Elevation:1,500-6,200 feet

Description: Identified by it's broad, flat, green pads and white spines that are 3” long. The spines can either be curved or straight.These cactus thorns are modified leaves and the shape conserves the water and adds protection.. Glochids are also found on a prickly pear and are tiny barbed hairs found through out the pads. Can grow up to 5 feet tall and  10-15 feet wide. RIpe fruit can be found on the prickly pear in the beginning of July. This red fruit is also called “Tuna” and  are edible. Prickly pears grow in washes, hillsides and in areas where the soil is sandy and dry. This plant needs full sun and are native to Sonoran Desert.


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