Cylindropuntia fulgida (Engelm.) F.M.Knuth
Jumping Cholla, Hanging Chain Cholla, Chain Fruit Cholla
Opuntia fulgida, Cylindropuntia fulgida var. fulgida, Grusonia fulgida, Opuntia mamillata
Cylindropuntia fulgida is a tree-like cactus with one low-branching trunk and drooping branches of chained fruit. It grows up to 13.3 feet (4 m) tall. The branches are light green and strongly tuberculate. Young branches are covered with up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) long, silvery-yellow spines, which darken to a gray color with age. These spines form a dense layer that obscures the stems. Flowers are white and pink, streaked with lavender. They are up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter and appear in mid-summer displayed at the joint tips (or old fruit tips).
USDA hardiness zones 8b to 11b: from 15 °F (−9.4 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Though the large variety of species within the Opuntia genus means different Prickly Pears may need slightly different care. All are desert cacti that need lots of sun, lots of light, and very little water. If you live in a hot, arid area, these plants can generally be planted outside, left alone, and enjoyed.
These cacti will grow just fine in a garden, but they can also be grown in pots. To repot, ensure the soil is dry, remove the pot and knock away the old soil. After treating any cuts with fungicide, place the cactus in a new pot and backfill it with potting soil. As with a new cutting, make sure not to water a newly repotting Prickly Pear for a brief period to avoid rotting its roots.
Opuntia can propagate either by cuttings or by seed. To propagate by cuttings, sever pads from a plant and let them dry so that the wounds heal. Then place the plants in dry soil and refrain from watering them until they begin to grow to avoid rotting them.
See more at How to Grow and Care for Opuntia.
This species is native to Sonora and the southwestern United States.
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