Virginia Tech Dendrology

Teddy bear cholla Cactaceae Cylindropuntia bigelovii (Engelm.) F.M. Knuth Listen to the Latin symbol: CYBI9
Leaf: Reduced to a spine, 1 inch, silvery-green to yellow-brown (brown-black with age), appearing soft and fuzzy (like a teddy bear), completely obscure the stem.
Flower: Creamy white, one inch, displayed at the joint tips, February to May.
Fruit: Barrel-shaped, fleshy, yellow-green, 1 inch, with a few spines.
Twig: Segmented, each segment blue-green or yellow-green, to 10 inches long and 2 inches in diameter.
Bark: Obscured by old needles, brown-black and becoming rough.
Form: Generally upright segmented cactus with one trunk, usually to 6 feet.
Looks like: buckhorn cholla - chain cholla - tree cholla - cane cholla
leaf flower fruit twig bark form1 map
Additional Range Information: Cylindropuntia bigelovii is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting Teddy bear cholla.
External Links: USDA Plants Database - Horticulture Information
All material © 2017 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson