Jumping Cholla Cactus

Jumping Cholla Cactus

Cylindropuntia fulgida range expands from its greatest range in Sonora, Mexico where its concentration is heaviest to the Colorado Desert of California, the Sonoran Desert of Arizona, the Mojave Desert in southern Nevada and Utah, and to the southern most part of the Great Basin Desert of southern Utah. It also reaches the islands of Tiburon and Isla Angel de la Guarda located in the Gulf of California. This cactus is a tree-like plant that anchors itself with a low-branching trunk and extends through strong, light green stems. These stems are coated with 2 – 3 cm silvery-yellow spines that darken as the cactus ages. Its stems can detach very easily if brushed upon, and stick to any human or animal giving it the name “jumping cholla”. The cactus can grow up to 12 ft with drooping branches of chained fruit that often bloom pink and white flowers in the mid-summer of the following year. These hanging chains of the pear-shaped fruit give this cactus its second name, the “hanging chain cholla”. And just in case you were still wondering, the cactus itself does not jump.

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