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Plant Form: Succulent perennial climbing shrubs.
Size: Up to 3 m high.
Stem: Long, thick, deep green, fleshy, covered in spines. Branched, often tangled. Has spots on stem segments (areoles) with 1-4 central spines 10-35 mm long.
Leaves: Has flattened stems (pads) rather than leaves. These are thick, fleshy and spiny.
Flowers: White with pinkish tinges. Funnel shaped with green base. Up to 20 cm long. Open at night and wither in the morning.
Fruit and Seeds: Red, with white flesh and black seeds. 2-4 cm diameter and warty and spiny in some species.
Habitat: Arid or semi-arid shrublands, cracking bare ground.
Distinguishing Features: Areoles have fewer spines than Sword Cactus (Acanthocereus tetragonus), and longer spines than Moonlight cactus (Hylocereus undatus).