Corynopuntia pulchella (Engelm.) F.M.Knuth
Micropuntia barkleyana Daston
Micropuntia brachyrhopalica Daston
Micropuntia gracilicylindrica E.F.Wiegand & Backeb.
Micropuntia pulchella (Engelm.) M.P.Griff.
Micropuntia pygmaea E.F.Wiegand & Backeb.
Micropuntia spectatissima Daston
Micropuntia tuberculosirhopalica E.F.Wiegand & Backeb.
Micropuntia wiegandii Backeb.
Opuntia barkleyana (Daston) G.D.Rowley
Opuntia brachyrhopalica (Daston) G.D.Rowley
Opuntia gracilicylindrica (E.F.Wiegand & Backeb.) G.D.Rowley
Opuntia pulchella Engelm.
Opuntia pygmaea (E.F.Wiegand & Backeb.) G.D.Rowley
Opuntia spectatissima (Daston) G.D.Rowley
Opuntia tuberculosirhopalica (E.F.Wiegand & Backeb.) G.D.Rowley
Opuntia wiegandii (Backeb.) G.D.Rowley
Common Name: Sand Club-Cholla
Grusonia pulchella is a spiny, succulent, low-growing, much-branched, shrubby cactus, forming clumps 10 - 20cm tall. The roots are tuberlike, 7 - 10cm long and 3 - 7cm wide. The stems are segmented, individual segments cylindric to ellipsoid, 1 -10cm long and up to 2cm wide[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine. It is occasionally grown as an ornamental[
Grusonia pulchella is a widespread species and although not abundant it is not an infrequent species. There are some
threats but these are not widespread or significant enough to pose any problems. The plant is classified as 'Least Concern' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2017)[
The plant has numerous minutely barbed glochids - these are barbed spines that are usually small to minute and are very sharp and brittle. The glochids are very easily dislodged when the plant is touched and can penetrate the skin where, because of their barbs, they become stuck and are very difficult to see and remove. They can cause considerable irritation and discomfort[
Southwest N. America - California, Nevada, Utah
Mojave Desert, Great Plains, sandy to rocky flats or slopes, often at edges of dry washes and lakes; at elevations from 1,200 - 1,900 metres[
|Conservation Status||Least Concern
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
We have no reports of edibility, but the reddish fruit is fleshy, obconical, smooth-skinned, around 15 - 30mm long and 8 - 12mm in diameter[
The tuberous roots are used for traditional medicinal purposes, mostly for the treatment of diarrhoea[