Opuntia atrispina D. Griffiths, Annual report Missouri Botanical Garden 21: 172-173, t 26, lower f, 1910
Opuntia atrispina is an early flowering species of Texas and adjacent Mexico; numerous plants in are found in April near Del Rio, TX (Hwy 90, north of town). The flowers are distinctive because they open dark yellow and change to salmon, pink, pink-yellow, or even tan-pink; thus, plants can be adorned with flowers of two cheerful colors. Newly opened flowers can have a hint of green in the center.
The round spines are unique because they are a distinctive rich dark-brown or black-brown at their bases and light tan or yellow on the upper half; this two-tone coloring provides a distinctive look. Cladodes are green and 3(4) inches wide by 6(7) inches long–egg shaped or oval. Plants are about 12-24(30) inches tall and 2-3 feet across, densely branched, and have shiny surfaces. Sometimes the plants form a 12-inch mound of thick branches that hug the ground.
The distribution of the species is limited in the United States, extending from west of Uvalde, TX to near Langtry, TX. The Flora of North America provides a distribution map; Britton and Rose report the plant is common about Del Rio, TX; also, see the original citation.