PRICKLYPEAR, Opuntia spp. Mill. Perennial, reproducing by stems and seeds. Stems flat, fleshy, covered with spines several inches in length, rooting freely at the joints. May be prostrate to erect and 3 feet (90 cm) or more tall. Flowers are several inches across, bright yellow, sometimes with red centers. Fruits somewhat pear-shaped, fleshy to dry and spiny, filled with many hard seeds. Seeds about 3/16 inch (4.5 mm) in diameter, flattened. Found in the drier sandier soils but not generally troublesome except on overgrazed rangelands or pastures. Variable in form; several similar species are found in the area.