Autor: Britton & Rose
“Similar to Pereskia”, because of the apparent similarity of this genus with Pereskia.
A genus of shrubby to treelike plants, irregularly branched with branches more or less ascending, sometimes from the base, sometimes with a defined trunk and bark on adult plants. Stems cylindrical, not segmented, with leaves usually persistent, variable, elliptical, rounded, lanceolate, spatulate, fleshy, with a short petiole. Areoles rounded, woolly and hairy, with glochids. Spines mostly present, aciculate, sheath absent.
Flowers diurnal, also nocturnal, rotate, typical of Opuntiads, self-sterile (although empty fruits can form), appearing on the terminal segments of the year, yellow, also pink, orange or red; P. porteri blooms late in the afternoon and the yellow flowers, delicately fragrant, are closed next morning. It is an important element, because it defines the type of pollinator, probably a Sphingideae in that case. Fruits small, obovoid to pyriform (pear-shaped), juicy, orange red, with areoles provided with wool, glochids and leaves petiolate, fleshy, quickly falling. Seeds discoid, hairy, with a whitish aspect because of the sclerotic aril recovering them.
The genus Pereskiopsis grows in Guatemala and up to northern Mexico, in the Sonoran desert, in coastal areas, along arroyos, on dry plains or low hills among a vegetation of spiny bushes or in deciduous or semi deciduous forests, from 10m up to 2100 m in altitude. It is difficult to discover in habitat, because it merges into other bushes and shrubs.
Guatemala (El Progreso, Santa Rosa, Zacapa), Mexico (Baja California, Campeche, Chiapas, Durango, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Jalisco, Mexico, Michoacan, Morelos, Nayarit, Oaxaca, Puebla, Queretaro, Sinaloa, Sonora, Veracruz, Yucatan).
Currently 6 species:
– Pereskiopsis aquosa* (F.A.C. Weber) Britton & Rose 1907
– Pereskiopsis blakeana J.G. Ortega 1929
– Pereskiopsis diguettii* (F.A.C. Weber) Britton & Rose 1907
– Pereskiopsis kellermannii Rose 1907
– Pereskiopsis porteri* (T.Brandegee ex F.A.C. Weber) Britton & Rose 1907
– Pereskiopsis rotundifolia (D.C.) Britton & Rose 1907
References: "TAXONOMY of the CACTACEAE" - ISBN 978-84-617-3692-8 (Vol. 2)