A tree, 6 to 11 meters high, or sometimes smaller and shrub-like; main stem covered with clusters of slender spines, 2.5 to 7 cm. long; branches glabrous, either bearing spines or naked, covered with light-brown bark; areoles small, woolly; leaves oblong to obliquely orbicular, short-petioled, unarmed at base, often broad above, usually acute, probably fleshy, glabrous, 4 cm. long or less; flowers bright yellow, opening about midday, borne on the old wood, solitary, sessile, 4 cm. broad; ovary covered with small ovate, acute leaves, these hairy in the axils; sepals oblong, obtuse, about 1 cm. long, entire on the margins; stamens numerous; fruit not known.
Collected by Herbert H. Smith at low altitudes near Santa Marta, Colombia, in April, 1898 to 10 (No. 1886, type), and from the same locality by Justin Goudot in 1844, and by Francis W. Pennell in 1918 (No. 4765).
Mr. Smith remarks that the leaves are deciduous in March or April, and that the tree is leafless when in bloom in the spring.
Figure 11 is copied from a drawing of an herbarium specimen collected by Herbert H. Smith at Ronda, Santa Marta, Colombia.
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