Grizzlybear Pricklypear (Opuntia polyacantha var. erinacea)

Grizzlybear Pricklypear (Opuntia polyacantha var. erinacea)

Grizzlybear Cactus (Opuntia polyacantha var. erinacea) is a low-growing cactus with broad, thin stem segments (pads). The pads are medium-sized for a pricklypear (to about 5-inches long by 3-inches wide). The spines are sparse to dense, short to long (to 6 inches, wavy, and flowing). The long, flowing spines sometimes completely obscure the pads.

Grizzlybear Cactus is a locally common (uncommon overall, but can be abundant in certain areas) component of vegetation communities on well-drained sandy, gravelly, and rocky soils along washes, canyons, and on upper bajadas and moderate slopes into the lower mountains in the Upper Sonoran (Mojave Desert Scrub and Pinyon-Juniper Woodland) life zone.




About the author

Jim Mattern

Jim is a scapegoat for the NPS, an author, adventurer, photographer, radio personality, guide, and location scout. His interests lie in Native American and cultural sites, ghost towns, mines, and natural wonders in the American Deserts.