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Zones 2A, 2B, 3A, 3B, 7-24
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Minimal Water
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Opuntia basilaris

Beavertail Cactus
Cactaceae
Cacti and succulents

OPUNTIA

The species described here originate in the desert Southwest and Mexico; other species are native to those areas and/or other parts of the western U.S., the Great Plains, Canada, and Florida. Most species fall into one of two sorts: those having flat, broad joints (pads), and those having cylindrical joints. Though the use of common names is somewhat inconsistent, members of the first group are often called prickly pear; those in the second group are frequently known as cholla. Hardiness is variable. Flowers are generally large and showy. The fruit is a berry, often edible.

Opuntia basilaris

Low-branching plant grows to 1 ft. high and 4 ft. wide. Oval to roundish gray-green to purplish pads are 2–12 in. wide and 1/2 in. thick, set with spines up to 2 in. long. Rich rose-purple, 2–3-in. spring flowers.

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