Found only in the Big Bend region of west Texas, opuntia azurea
is an attractive plant, with bluish, reddish or purplish-green stems (bright red-purple when young) bearing long red spines (usually just one per areole) along the rim and the upper part of each pad. The cactus flowers profusely in early summer, producing large, yellow-red blooms, followed by red/purple fruits. The species is similar to opuntia macrocentra
, but has generally fewer (and darker) spines, and more uniform pad coloration.