Opuntia ×columbiana


Bull. Torrey Bot. Club 43: 523. 1916.

Synonyms: Opuntia erinacea var. columbiana (Griffiths) L. D. Benson
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 4. Treatment on page 146. Mentioned on page 125.

Shrubs, low, forming mats, 10–30 cm. Stem segments easily detached to firmly attached, green, flattened, narrowly to broadly obovate, 3.5–9 × 2.5–5 cm, low tuberculate, glabrous; areoles 4–6(–7) per diagonal row across midstem segment, oval, 3.5 × 2.5 mm; wool white. Spines in most areoles, straight, acicular, terete; major spines 0–1 per areole, reflexed to porrect (rarely ascending), gray-white to brown, (15–)25–40(–60) mm; intermediate spines 0–3, reflexed, 12–20 mm; minor spines 2–4, reflexed, yellow-gray, 3–6 mm. Glochids loosely packed, in small tuft or crescent at adaxial margin of areole, yellowish, inconspicuous, to 4 mm. Flowers: inner tepals yellow throughout, 30–45 mm; filaments white to red; anthers yellow; style white; stigma lobes green. Fruits rarely set, top-shaped to barrel-shaped, 15–20 × 15 mm, glabrous; areoles 10–15, most bearing 3–12 spines or distal spines bearing 1–3 spines. Seeds tan, large, 5–7 mm; girdle protruding 1–1.5 mm. 2n = 66.

Phenology: Flowering summer (late Jun-early Jul).
Habitat: Dark basaltic cliffs and derived sands
Elevation: 100-800 m


Selected References


Lower Taxa