Plant Index


 
 
 

Opuntia humifusa

Opuntia humifusa (Raf.) Raf.

eastern prickly pear, devil’s-tongue

Synonym(s): Opuntia calcicola, Opuntia compressa, Opuntia compressa var. allairei, Opuntia compressa var. fuscoatra, Opuntia compressa var. microsperma, Opuntia cumulicola, Opuntia humifusa var. humifusa, Opuntia rafinesquei
Opuntia humifusa (Eastern Prickly Pear)
Image ID: 9317
Image by: Ware, Richard & Teresa
Image Collection: NCBG Digital Library

PLANT INDEX

ID_PLANT: OPHU
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Opuntia humifusa
Include in WOTAS: 0
Publish to Web: 1
Last Modified: 2018-09-13

GENUS INDEX

GENUS CODE: OPUNT
GENUS SCIENTIFIC: Opuntia
GENUS AUTHORITY: Mill.
GENUS COMMON: Pricklypear
GENUS SUMMARY: [contributed by Lucas C. Majure]
GENUS IDENTIFICATION:
GENUS REFERENCES: Britton & Rose (1920); Benson (1982)=Y; Anderson (2001); Pinkava in FNA (2003b); Majure et al. (2012a, 2012b, 2012c, 2013); Majure & Puente (2014); Majure (2014); Ward (2009e)=X; Doyle (1990)=Z; Barthlott & Hunt in Kubitzki, Rohwer, & Bittrich (1993).

FAMILY INDEX

FAMILY CODE: CACTAC
FAMILY SCIENTIFIC: Cactaceae
FAMILY AUTHORITY: A.L. de Jussieu 1789
FAMILY COMMON: Cactus Family
FAMILY SUMMARY: A family of about 110-139 genera and about 1450-1800 species, perennial herbs, shrubs, vines, and trees, endemic to tropical, subtropical, and temperate America (a single species, Rhipsalis baccifera, occurring as well in Africa, Madagascar, and Sri Lanka, presumably as a result of long-distance dispersal from the Americas), with centers of diversity in sw. United States-n. Mexico, s. South America, and the West Indies. The base chromosome number for the family is n=11.
FAMILY REFERENCE: Parfitt & Gibson in FNA (2003b); Barthlott & Hunt in Kubitzki, Rohwer, & Bittrich (1993); Hunt et al. (2006); Anderson (2001); Nyffeler & Eggli (2010).

NCBG DESCRIPTIVES

INTRO:
STEMS:
LEAVES:
INFLORESCENCE:
FLOWERS:
FRUITS:
COMMENTS:
HEIGHT: to 2 feet or more

DURATION: Perennial
HABIT: Shrub, Cactus/Succulent

LEAF ARRANGEMENT:
LEAF COMPLEXITY:
LEAF RETENTION: Evergreen

FLORAL CHARACTERISTICS
SYMMETRY:
BLOOM TIME: May-Jun
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
x x x

BLOOM COLOR: Yellow flowers
White Red Pink Orange Yellow Green Blue Lavender Purple Violet Brown Not Applicable
x

FRUITING PERIOD: Aug-Dec (-Feb).

DISTRIBUTION
HABITAT TYPE:
NATIVE RANGE: eastern North America

HORTICULTURAL
Plant Sale Text: The waxy yellow 3-to-4-inch flowers on this native cactus provide nectar for butterflies. The Eastern Prickly-pear has large purple to reddish-brown berry-type fruits that are a fine source of food for wildlife. It makes an unusual accent plant. This species was used by several Native American tribes as a dermatological aid, as well as eating the fruits once the spines were removed. This species is drought-resistant and easy to grow. Because of its spines, be sure to plant it where it will have ample room to grow. A mature clump will reach 3 or 4 feet in width.

Bloom Table Text:

NCBG Location:

Cultural Notes:

SOIL MOISTURE: Well-drained
LIGHT EXPOSURE: Sun
MINIMUM HARDINESS ZONE: 4
MAXIMUM HARDINESS ZONE: 9
GERMINATION CODE:
WILDLIFE VALUE: Bee Friendly, Butterfly Friendly
DEER RESISTANCE:

GRIM ACCESSIONS

acc_id acc_num acc_dt coll_id Action
1353 1986-1128 View
2211 1986-2028 View
8929 1987-0348 0000-00-00 1196 View


GRIM COLLECTIONS

Coll_id Project Collection date Collector Action
591 SOS 2015-10-17 Maynard View
1196 HORT 1983-06-30 View


GRIM PLANTINGS

plt_num acc_id loc_num pers_num inst_dt Action
2359 1353 81 NCBG staff 2001-02-01 View
3836 2211 54 NCBG staff 1967-12-31 View
3837 2211 57 NCBG staff 1967-12-31 View
4727 8929 117 NCBG staff 1967-12-01 View

USDA PLANTS DATABASE

USDA Symbol: OPHU
USDA Common Name: Devil's-tongue
Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)
Distribution: USA (AL, AR, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, NE, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, WI, WV), CAN (ON)
Duration: Perennial
Growth Habit: Shrub

WEAKLEY FLORA

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Opuntia humifusa
COMMON NAME: Eastern Prickly Pear
SYNONYMY: [< O. humifusa - K2; < O. humifusa (Rafinesque) Rafinesque var. humifusa - K1, Va, Y, Z; < O. humifusa var. humifusa - FNA; < O. compressa (Salisbury) J.F. Macbride var. compressa - G; < O. compressa - RAB; < O. humifusa - C, F, Pa, W, WH3; > O. humifusa - X; > O. impedita Small - S; > O. macrarthra Gibbes - S; > O. opuntia (Linnaeus) Karten - S; > O. compressa - WV; > O. calcicola Wherry - WV; > O. calcicola Wherry; > O. rafinesquei Engelmann, nomen nudum]
PHENOLOGY: May-Jun; Aug-Dec.
HABITAT: Slate outcrops, sandy soils, upland hardwood forests or mixed pine-hardwood forests in dry, clay or silty soils.
COMMENTS: O. humifusa is restricted primarily to the Appalachian Mountains but also occurs in the inner coastal plain of central and n. central MS (Attala, Choctaw, Grenada, Webster cos.). More work may illuminate populations in n. AL, nw. GA, w. SC, w. NC, and ne. TN, however, at present populations are disjunct between the eastern states (DE, MD, NJ, VA, WV) and MS. O. humifusa is an allotetraploid (2n=44), cryptic species that is most easily confused with O. mesacantha ssp. mesacantha, from which it can be separated by its lack of spines (although see O. mesacantha), and generally increased number of areoles per diagonal row across the cladode face at midstem (4-5 vs. 3-4 in O. mesacantha), generally inserted glochids (vs. exerted in O. mesacantha), and smaller seeds (4.0-4.6 mm long vs. 5.0-5.9 mm long in O. mesacantha ssp. mesacantha) with a smooth funicular envelop (instead of the upraised funicular envelope in O. mesacantha ssp. mesacantha). Opuntia humifusa also tends to have rotund or elliptic-oblong cladodes vs. O. mesacantha ssp. mesacantha, which more often has rotund to obovate cladodes, but cladode shape is highly variable. Populations of O. humifusa are typically located geographically between populations of O. cespitosa and O. mesacantha ssp. mesacantha. See Kalmbacher (1976) and Leuenberger (1993) for a discussion of the proper name for this taxon.
RANGE MAP: Opuntia humifusa.png

Key to Map Symbols
ABOUT FAMILY (Weakley Flora)
Cactaceae A.L. de Jussieu 1789 (Cactus Family)
SUMMARY: A family of about 110-139 genera and about 1450-1800 species, perennial herbs, shrubs, vines, and trees, endemic to tropical, subtropical, and temperate America (a single species, Rhipsalis baccifera, occurring as well in Africa, Madagascar, and Sri Lanka, presumably as a result of long-distance dispersal from the Americas), with centers of diversity in sw. United States-n. Mexico, s. South America, and the West Indies. The base chromosome number for the family is n=11.
REFERENCE: Parfitt & Gibson in FNA (2003b); Barthlott & Hunt in Kubitzki, Rohwer, & Bittrich (1993); Hunt et al. (2006); Anderson (2001); Nyffeler & Eggli (2010).
ABOUT GENUS (Weakley Flora)
Opuntia Mill. (Pricklypear)
SUMMARY: [contributed by Lucas C. Majure]
REFERENCE: Britton & Rose (1920); Benson (1982)=Y; Anderson (2001); Pinkava in FNA (2003b); Majure et al. (2012a, 2012b, 2012c, 2013); Majure & Puente (2014); Majure (2014); Ward (2009e)=X; Doyle (1990)=Z; Barthlott & Hunt in Kubitzki, Rohwer, & Bittrich (1993).

HERBARIUM RESOURCES

SERNEC: Find Opuntia humifusa in Southeast Regional Network of Experts and Collections (if available)
UNC SERNEC: Find Opuntia humifusa in University of North Carolina Chapel Hill Herbarium - Southeast Regional Network of Experts and Collections (if available)

WEB RESOURCES

USDA: Find Opuntia humifusa in USDA Plants
NPIN: Find Opuntia humifusa in NPIN Database
FNA: Find Opuntia humifusa in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Opuntia humifusa

NCBG IMAGE RECORDS

ID IMAGE1: 9317
ID IMAGE2: 0
ID IMAGE3: 9317

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