Overview

Distribution

National Distribution

United States

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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Global Range: Arizona Desert. Arizona from south and east Yavapai Co. to Pima, west Santa Cruz, and west Cochise Cos. Mexico in Sonora and Sinaloa.

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Range Description

The species is found in the Mexican state of Sonora and in the United States in Arizona. Records of this species from southern Sonora and northern Sinaloa are most likely misidentifications of C. thurberi. This species occurs from sea level to 1,000 m.
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Ariz.; Mexico (Sonora).
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Physical Description

Morphology

Description

Trees or shrubs, densely branched, 0.5-3 m. Stem segments green, sometimes purple tinged, 6-10.5 × 0.5-1.3 cm; tubercles narrowly elongate, appearing as wrinkles when dry, 1-2 cm; areoles circular, 2-3 mm in diam.; wool tan to brown, aging gray to black. Spines 0-2(-3) per areole, sparsely distributed along stem, usually deflexed, pale yellow or red-brown aging black, stout, the longest 0.8-3.5(-5) cm; sheaths loose fitting, yellowish brown. Glochids in adaxial tuft and marginal, encircling areole, pale yellow. Flowers: inner tepals green- or orange-bronze, spatulate, 17-20 mm, apiculate; filaments dark green-bronze; anthers yellow; style whitish basally to light orange apically; stigma lobes very pale green. Fruits green, becoming yellowish apically, sometimes tinged red to purplish at areoles, commonly sterile, then narrow, tuberculate, to 2.5 cm, fertile ones stipitate, obconic, 20-50 × 15-35 mm, fleshy, becoming smooth, spineless; umbilicus 3-4 mm deep; areoles 15-17(-34). Seeds pale yellow, angularly circular to oblong, thick, 3-5 mm diam., lumpy; girdle smooth, broad, not protruding. 2n = 66.
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Diagnostic Description

Synonym

Opuntia arbuscula Engelmann, Proc. Amer. Acad. Arts 3: 309. 1856
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Ecology

Habitat

Comments: Sand and gravel of washes, flats, valleys, and plains in the desert.

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Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Cylindropuntia arbuscula only occurs on the east side of the Sonoran Desert in desert scrub (Paredes et al. 2000). This species is sensitive to frost.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Sonoran Desert flats, bajadas, desert scrub; 300-1000m.
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Population Biology

Number of Occurrences

Note: For many non-migratory species, occurrences are roughly equivalent to populations.

Estimated Number of Occurrences: 21 - 80

Comments: Thirty-eight EO's (Benson 1982). Arizona HP ranks 'S3.5' (Mar94).

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Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Flowering/Fruiting

Flowering spring (Apr-Jun).
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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G4 - Apparently Secure

Reasons: At least thirty-eight occurrences in the Arizona Desert. Also in northern Mexico.

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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2013

Assessor/s
Pinkava, D.J., Puente, R. & Baker, M.

Reviewer/s
Goettsch, B.K.

Contributor/s

Justification
This is a widespread and fairly common species with no major threats. Hence, it is listed as Least Concern.
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Population

Population
This species is not abundant and its distribution tends to be scattered. However, there are many occurrences of individual plants.

Population Trend
Stable
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Threats

Comments: Most cacti subject to horticultural collecting.

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Major Threats
There are no threats to Cylindropuntia arbuscula.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
This species is recorded from a number of protected areas including Organ Pipe National Monument, Saguaro National Monument, and Ironwood National Monument (US); and the Pinacante Biosphere Reserve (Mexico).
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Notes

Comments

Cylindropuntia arbuscula forms hybrids with C. leptocaulis in south-central Arizona; those hybrids have narrow, obscurely tuberculate stems and reddish fruits nearly the size of those of C. arbuscula and chromosome number of 2n = 55. Hybrids between C. arbuscula and C. spinosior [= C . ×neoarbuscula (Griffiths) F. M. Knuth] have large green fruits, which often split open, and on stem segments distal areoles that usually bear three or four spines to 2.5 cm. Hybrids between C. arbuscula and C. versicolor [= C . ×vivipara (Rose) F. M. Knuth] have large green fruits, which often split open, and distal stem segment areoles that bear one or two spines to 1.5 cm.
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