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California Barrel

Ferocactus cylindraceus

Details & Attributes

Plant Type(s) Cacti
Native to Arizona Yes!
Water Needs Low
Sun Full sun
Pollinators Bees
Has Spines Yes
In relative feet, width by height
2-6' × 2-6'
Flowering Season May-June
Flower Color Typically yellow
Minimum Temperature Range 10-20 °F
Leaf Description Spines
Fruit Yellow, filled with a juicy pulp and abundant black seeds. Fruit has a slightly bitter flavor
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Description The westernmost of Arizona's native barrel cacti, found primarily around Phoenix, west towards the California border, north to the Grand Canyon. This species can be differentiated by its upright growth habit, its dense covering of rigid spines, and its typically yellow flowers. This is a plant which thrives on slopes, and rocky outcroppings, but may also be found on sandy wash margins. California barrel is a tough cactus which can be interplanted with Limberbush (Jatropha cardiophylla), Ironwood (Olneya tesota), Saguaro (Carnegia gigantea), and Brittlebush (Encelia farinosa).