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Christmas Cholla

Cylindropuntia leptocaulis

Details & Attributes

Plant Type(s) Cactus, succulent, perennial
Native to Arizona Yes!
Water Needs Low
Sun Full sun
Pollinators Bees
Has Spines Yes
In relative feet, width by height
1.5 × 1
Freeze Tolerant No
Flowering Season March-August
Flower Color Yellow
Minimum Temperature Range -10 °F
Leaf Description Spines
Fruit Spiny and bright red
In years
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Range Map View SEINet Range Map
Ethnobotany Fruits were used to sweeten and add potency to "tulbai", a beer-like beverage made by fermenting sprouted corn; the small fruits were also eaten raw.
Description Christmas Cholla is a small cactus distinguished by its persistent red fruits which add a splash of color to the desert in winter. Because of its small stature this is an appropriate species for cactus gardens with limited space.