Global Range: It occurs in California on Santa Rosa, Santa Cruz, Anacapa, San Nicolas, Santa Catalina, and San Clemente islands; and on southern mainland near ocean from Ventura southward; rarely inland as far as San Fernando and Fall-brook. It also occurs in Mexico.
Comments: Fine soils of hills, flats, ocean bluffs, valleys, along seacoast at low elevations.
Habitat and Ecology
Number of Occurrences
Note: For many non-migratory species, occurrences are roughly equivalent to populations.
Estimated Number of Occurrences: 21 - 80
Comments: Thirty EO's (Benson 1982).
Life History and Behavior
National NatureServe Conservation Status
Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked
NatureServe Conservation Status
Rounded Global Status Rank: G3 - Vulnerable
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
Comments: Most cacti subject to horticultural collecting.
Cylindropuntia prolifera is a mostly erect, treelike cactus which can approach 3 meters in maximum height. The gray-green segments are narrow and cylindrical, surfaced in fleshy tubercles bearing many brown or reddish spines up to 2 centimeters long. The flowers are reddish purple and often borne on the fruits of previous seasons. Fruits grow in chains of up to 5 and are green in color.
Cylindropuntia prolifera is native to Southern California and Baja California, where it grows in coastal sage scrub, chaparral, and beach and bluff habitat. It occurs from Santa Barbara County south.
- California coastal sage and chaparral - (subecoregion)