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Cylindropuntia ramosissima

Cylindropuntia ramosissima (Engelm.) F.M. Knuth

Opuntia ramosissima Engelm.

Opuntia tesselata

Diamond Cholla, Diamond-plated Pencil Cholla, Branched Pencil Cholla

ParentsUnknownGenus is not in the current taxonomy
GenusCylindropuntia
Speciesramosissima

About plant names...

Diamond cholla is so named because the pattern of bumps (technically tubercules) along the stem segments is diamond-shaped. The “pencil” in other common names refers to the narrow, pencil-like stems.

Identification: Diamond cholla is multiply branched, resembling either a shrub or a small tree, 20-79" (50-200 cm) tall. Stem segments are ¾-4" (2-10 cm) long, and only ⅛-⅜" (4-10 mm) in diameter. Unusually long spines ⅞-2" (2.5-6 cm) long occur in groups of one to five. The spine groups are widely spaced, and the spines are tan to reddish brown or deep purple, and finally to gray. Flowers are brown, tinged with red; sometimes orange or pink. Fruits or oval-shaped, tan, ½-1" (1.5-3 cm) × ⅜-½" (1-1.5 cm).

References:

Anderson, Edward F., The Cactus Family, Timber Press, 2001, p. 212

Online References:

Cylindropuntia ramosissima on Desert-tropicals.com

Cylindropuntia ramosissima on SEINet—the Southwest Environmental Information Network

Cylindropuntia ramosissima at the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum Sonoran Desert Digital Library

Cylindropuntia ramosissima on Wayne's Word

Cylindropuntia ramosissima on CactiGuide.com

Cylindropuntia ramosissima at the Anza-Borrego Desert Natural History Association

Cylindropuntia ramosissima from the Jepson Manual

Cylindropuntia ramosissima on eFloras

Cylindropuntia ramosissima description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 16 Aug 2013.

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Cylindropuntia ramosissima (Diamond Cholla, Diamond-plated Pencil Cholla, Branched Pencil Cholla)

2/28/2010 · Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, CA
≈ 24 × 16" (62 × 41 cm)

Cylindropuntia ramosissima (Diamond Cholla, Diamond-plated Pencil Cholla, Branched Pencil Cholla)

2/17/2007 · Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, CA

Cylindropuntia ramosissima (Diamond Cholla, Diamond-plated Pencil Cholla, Branched Pencil Cholla)

2/28/2010 · Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, CA
≈ 15 × 12" (37 × 30 cm)

Cylindropuntia ramosissima (Diamond Cholla, Diamond-plated Pencil Cholla, Branched Pencil Cholla)

2/17/2007 · Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, CA

Range: Zones 8a-11:

About this map...