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Cholla (Cylindropuntia spp.)

173.jpg Desert Mistletoe (<i>Phoradendron californicum</i>)ThumbnailsTriangle Leaf Bursage (<i>Ambrosia deltoidea</i>)

Common names: Cholla, Chain Fruit Cholla; Jumping Cactus; Teddy Bear Cholla, Staghorn Cholla, among others

Scientific name: Cylindropuntia spp.

Description: A branching cactus with a woody base and segmented "branches" and excessive spines Fruits and flowers vary.

Dye: None.

Other uses: Various parts (bud, fruit, root) prepared as food/beverage by Acoma, Apache, Laguna, Cocopah, Hano, Havasupai, Hopi, Hualapai, Laguna, Maricopa, Mohave, Navajo, Papago, Pima, Yavapai, and Zuni. Acoma use(d) spines for tattooing and sewing. Several groups also use(d) plant parts for medicinal/ceremonial/symbolic purposes. Cholla buds are still eaten by the Tohono O'odham (Papago). Archaeological evidence also suggests the Hohokam cultivated the plants near residences.

Kimberley A. Ryan, Northern Arizona University Anthropology Laboratories
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