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The claret cup is one of the relatively few cacti found only at higher elevations in Big Bend National Park, mainly in the Chisos Mountains above 4,000 feet, where they grow in grassy, wooded land, with volcanic soil. The dull green plants form large clusters of a hundred or more stems and produce brilliant orange-red flowers in spring. This species is also known as chinocereus triglochidiatus, and occurs, with variations, all across the Southwest.
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