Cacti and succulents
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 microdasys
Fast growth to 2–3 ft. high and 4–5 ft. wide (much smaller in pots). Flat, thin, nearly round pads to 6 in. across, in a soft, velvety green; neatly spaced tufts of short golden bristles give a polka-dot effect. ‘Albispina’ has white bristles. New pads atop larger old ones give plant the shape of an animal’s head.
From eastern Australia. Grows to 12–20 ft. tall and wide, with short, triangular, gray-green lea...
Native to Baja California. Climbs to 25 ft., with a woody base and leaves divided into five 1 1/2-in. ...
Big, dramatic plant, to 5 ft. tall and 10 ft. wide, with wide, fleshy, gray-green leaves that are fine...