Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla
Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla

Introducing the Cholla cactus, also known as Cylindropuntia cholla, a vibrant member of the Cylindropuntia genus with more than 20 species. Native to the southwestern United States and parts of Mexico, the Cylindropuntia cholla has several other common names, such as the jumping cholla, the chain link cholla, and chollas. 

The Cholla species, known as jumping cholla, has a unique trick where their stems attach to passersby at the slightest touch, resembling a jump. Although they can't jump, caution should be exercised around them. 

The jumping cholla cactus has unique cylindrical spiny joints or segmented-shaped stems covered in sharp spines that serve as a defense mechanism. These spines can vary in color, ranging from golden to reddish-brown, and they add to the distinctive appearance of the cholla cactus. 

As your Cholla jumping cactus matures, its stems can grow to various sizes, reaching heights of a few feet to up to 15 feet tall. The stems can also spread out, creating a bushy and visually striking plant. 

Cholla cactus flowers typically bloom during spring and summer in vibrant colors, ranging from shades of white, pink, green, red, and even yellow. These cup-shaped flowers emerge from the spiny stems of the cactus, creating a beautiful contrast between the soft petals and the sharp thorns. The flowers often open up during the day and close at night, attracting pollinators such as bees and butterflies. It's truly a magical experience to witness the cholla cactus burst into a display of colorful blooms. 

The cholla cactus, like many cacti, is generally not considered toxic to humans and pets. However, it's always a good idea to exercise caution when handling any cactus plant with spines or thorns. The spines of the cholla cactus can cause physical irritation and discomfort if they come into contact with the skin. So, it's best to avoid touching or brushing against the spines to prevent any potential irritation. 

Watering Needs 

Like other desert plants, the cholla cactus has adapted to survive in arid conditions. When it comes to watering the Chollas, it's important to follow the "soak and dry" method. This means giving your Cholla cactus a good watering until water drains out of the bottom of the pot and then allowing the soil to dry out completely before watering again. 

In spring and summer, during the active growing season, the cholla cactus will appreciate more frequent watering. You can water it every 1-2 weeks, depending on the temperature and humidity levels in your area. 

However, in fall and winter, during the dormant period, it's best to reduce watering to once every 4-6 weeks, as the cactus requires less moisture during this time. 

Remember, overwatering can be harmful to the Cylindropuntia cholla cactus. Signs of overwatering include yellowing or wilting of the stems, soft and mushy roots, or the presence of mold or fungus on the soil surface. To prevent these issues, make sure to allow the soil to dry out between waterings and avoid leaving your summer grower cactus sitting in standing water. 

Light Requirements

The tree like cactus cholla thrives in bright, indirect sunlight, making it an ideal plant for sunny locations. Whether you're growing it indoors or outdoors, providing ample light is crucial for its health and growth. 

When growing the cholla cactus indoors, place it near a south-facing window where it can receive plenty of sunlight throughout the day. If a south-facing window is not available, you can also use artificial grow lights to supplement the light requirements. 

For outdoor cultivation, find a spot that receives at least 6-8 hours of full sunlight daily. This could be a sunny patio, balcony, or garden area. Just make sure to protect the cholla cactus gardens from intense afternoon sun, especially during the hot summer months, as it can scorch the plant. If you live in a region with harsh winters, it's advisable to bring the cholla cactus indoors or provide some protection during freezing temperatures. 

Remember, proper lighting is essential for the cholla cactus garden to thrive and maintain its vibrant and healthy appearance. So, find a sunny spot and let that natural light work its magic! 

Optimal Soil & Fertilizer 

When it comes to soil, the cholla cactus prefers well-draining soil that mimics its natural desert habitat. A mix of sandy soil, perlite, and peat moss works well for this cactus. Excess water drains away from this type of soil, preventing root rot and other moisture-related problems.  You can also add some small rocks or gravel at the bottom of the pot to enhance drainage. Ideally, you want to use our specialized cactus potting mix that contains 5 natural substrates and organic mycorrhizae to promote the development of a strong root system that helps your cactus to thrive. 

As for fertilizing, the cholla cactus doesn't require frequent feeding like some other cacti. It's best to fertilize sparingly, about once a year, during the active growing season in the spring. A balanced (5-10-5), water-soluble fertilizer with a low nitrogen content is recommended. Follow the instructions for the correct dilution ratio and apply it to the soil around the base of the Cylindropuntia cactus. 

Remember, it's important not to over-fertilize the cholla cactus, as this can lead to excessive growth and weak stems. If you notice any signs of nutrient deficiency, such as pale or yellowing stems, you can increase the frequency of fertilization slightly. Always err on the side of caution and monitor the Cholla plant's response to the fertilizer. 

Hardiness Zone & More 

If you are growing your Cylindropuntia Cholla cactus indoors, it generally thrives in average room temperatures ranging from 65°F to 75°F. However, the jumping chollas can tolerate slightly cooler temperatures, down to 20°F during their dormant period in the fall and winter. It is one of those heat-tolerant cholla cacti and is well-suited to desert-like conditions with temperatures ranging from 80°F to 100°F. As for humidity, the cholla cactus is accustomed to low humidity levels, so there's no need to worry too much about it. Just make sure the air isn't overly dry, especially during winter when indoor heating can cause dryness. 

For outdoor cultivation, the cholla cactus typically thrives in USDA zones 8 to 10. These zones are characterized by mild winters and hot summers. The Cholla cactus is a not very frost-resistant cactus, hardy to 28° F (or less if very dry). However, indoors it is better not to expose it to temperatures lower than 32° F. 

Remember, the cholla cactus is a tough and resilient plant that can adapt to various conditions, but it's always best to provide it with an environment that closely resembles its natural habitat. 

Propagating Cholla Cactus 

Propagating the Cylindropuntia cholla cactus is an exciting and rewarding process. One common method is by using stem cuttings. To propagate your cholla cactus, start by carefully cutting a healthy stem segment from the main plant using a clean and sharp knife or scissors. Allow the cutting to dry and callus over for a few days to prevent rotting. Once calloused, you can plant the cutting in a well-draining cactus mix, ensuring that the bottom end is inserted into the soil. Keep the soil lightly moist and place the cutting in a warm and bright location, avoiding direct sunlight. 

With time and proper care, your cholla cactus cutting will develop roots and grow into a new plant. It's a wonderful way to expand your cholla cactus collection or share it with fellow plant enthusiasts. 

The Bottom Line 

Overall, the cholla cactus (Cylindropuntia) is a fascinating and resilient cactus plant that thrives in arid and desert-like environments. With its unique and striking appearance, it adds a touch of natural beauty to any indoor or outdoor space. The cholla cactus is known for its ability to adapt to various conditions, making it a great choice for both beginner and experienced plant enthusiasts.

It requires well-drained soil, ample sunlight, and minimal watering to thrive. Whether you choose to cultivate it indoors or outdoors, the cholla cactus will surely captivate your attention with its spiny stems and vibrant blooms. So, if you're looking to add a touch of desert charm to your plant collection, the Cylindropuntia cholla cactus is definitely worth considering. 

Bloom Season Spring, summer
Botanical Name Cylindropuntia cholla
Common Name Cholla cactus, Chain link cholla, Cholla
Dormancy Winter
Family Cactaceae
Flower Color White, Pink, deep purple, yellow, orange, green, red
Genus Cylindropuntia
Growth Habit Columnar
Growth Rate Moderate
Hardiness Zone 8, 9, 10
Mature Size 15 ft. tall
Native Area United states, northern Mexico
Plant Type Cactus
Propagation By stem cuttings
Resistance Drought tolerant, deer resistance, mild frost tolerant
Soil PH 6.5, Acidic, Neutral
Soil Type Cactus potting mix soil
Special Features Densely branched shrub
Sun Exposure Full sun, partia shade
Toxicity Safe for humans, Safe for pets
Watering Needs Low

Pests & Common Problems of Cholla Cactus

The Cholla cactus is susceptible to several pests and problems. These can cause damage to the Cholla plant by feeding on the leaves and stems, which can cause the plant to become weak and stressed.  

Scale Insects: These small, oval-shaped pests can attach themselves to the cactus and suck out its sap, causing yellowing and wilting of your Cholla cactus. 

Mealybugs: Mealybugs are tiny, white insects that often gather in cotton clusters on the cactus. They can cause stunted growth and weaken the Cholla plant. 

Spider Mites: These tiny pests are difficult to spot but can cause webbing and yellowing of the Cylindropuntia cactus. They feed on the plant's sap, leading to weakened and unhealthy growth. 

Root Rot: Overwatering or poorly draining soil can lead to root rot, which is a fungal infection that affects the roots of the cactus. It can cause wilting, yellowing, and even death of the Cholla plant. 

Droopy Stem: Drooping stems in cacti can indicate an environmental issue such as temperature shock, lack of water, or mealybug infestation. If temperature shock is suspected, propagating healthy stems can help save the plant, as some cacti struggle to recover from such shocks. 

Mushy Stem: Mushy stems on a cholla cactus indicate root rot, which should be promptly addressed. Use pruning shears or scissors to cut the stem above the rot, then follow propagation stems to root the remaining plant in fresh soil. This will prevent the rot from spreading to the entire Cholla plant. 

Sunburn: Exposing the cholla cactus to intense, direct sunlight for extended periods can result in sunburn. This can cause discoloration, scarring, and damage to the Cholla cactus. 

Mechanical Damage: The spines of the cholla cactus are sharp and can easily stick to clothing or skin. Be careful when handling the Cylindropuntia to avoid injury. 

Remember, proper Cholla cactus care, regular inspections, and prompt action can help prevent and address these issues effectively. 

FAQs of Cholla Cactus

How painful is cholla cactus? 

The spines of the cholla cactus can definitely cause some pain if they come into contact with your skin. The spines have tiny barbs that can easily hook onto you, making them difficult and sometimes painful to remove. It's best to avoid touching or getting too close to the spines to prevent any discomfort.  

If you do happen to get pricked, gently removing the spines and cleaning the area can help minimize any further irritation. So, it's always a good idea to admire the cholla cactus from a safe distance to avoid any unexpected prickly encounters! 

Does cholla cactus really jump? 

No, the cholla cactus doesn't actually jump. The name "jumping cholla" comes from the way its spines easily detach and cling onto anything that brushes against them, including animals or people. It can give the impression that the cactus is "jumping" onto you.  

So, while it may not physically jump, it can definitely make you jump if you accidentally come into contact with its spines! It's always good to be cautious around these prickly plants. 

Are cholla cactus poisonous? 

Cholla cacti are not considered poisonous to humans. However, it's important to be cautious around the spines, as they can cause pain and irritation if they come into contact with your skin. Just make sure to admire these unique and beautiful cacti from a safe distance to avoid any prickly encounters. 

How do you take care of the Cholla cactus? 

Taking care of the Cholla cactus (Cylindropuntia) involves providing it with well-draining soil and watering it sparingly in the growing season, as overwatering can lead to root rot.  

Additionally, it is important to protect the Cholla cactus from extreme temperatures outside of USDA zones 8-10 and provide it with adequate full sun to partial shade for at least 4-6 hours a day for healthy growth.

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Cholla Cactus - Cylindropuntia cholla

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Regular price$ 9.99
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Height:
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Height: 8"-12"
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Please note: All Landscape Ready plants that are in a 6-inch pot or larger WILL NOT come with a pot as it will be shipped bare root.

  • In stock, ready to ship
  • Inventory on the way

Please note: Our large plants are many years old, and as a result, they might have minor scaring but will arrive 100% healthy and looking great.

Please note: Our large plants are shipped bare root. They are also many years old, and as a result, they might have minor scaring but will arrive healthy and looking great.

If you live in a cold climate and are expecting temperatures below 40 degrees within the next five days after placing your order, we highly recommend adding a heat pack to your order. If you do not order a heat pack, we do not send one with your order.

BUY HEAT PACKS HERE

**FREE HEAT PACK WITH ORDERS OVER $50 before taxes and shipping- BY REQUEST ONLY, PLEASE MAKE A NOTE ON YOUR ORDER.

To prevent plants from freezing while in transit, orders placed for areas with extreme severe freezing temperatures will be held for shipment until it is safe to ship.

Plants that are in 3.5" pots and smaller will be shipped in its pot to prevent any damage to the roots. Any plant that is 6" and larger WILL NOT come with a pot as it will be shipped bare root.

Depending on the species and season, you will receive a very similar plant to the one in the picture. It may or may not be blooming at the time of your purchase.

We ship via USPS Priority Mail, and we calculate the shipping cost based on the weight and volume of your purchase. Care instructions are included in every package you order. Please allow us up to 3 business days to process your order. Depending on your location, we will ship the plants on a certain day to avoid transit time during weekends or holidays. If you wish to receive your order on a specific date, or have special instructions, please add a note on your order. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at any time.

  • Description
  • Key Plant Features

Introducing the Cholla cactus, also known as Cylindropuntia cholla, a vibrant member of the Cylindropuntia genus with more than 20 species. Native to the southwestern United States and parts of Mexico, the Cylindropuntia cholla has several other common names, such as the jumping cholla, the chain link cholla, and chollas. 

The Cholla species, known as jumping cholla, has a unique trick where their stems attach to passersby at the slightest touch, resembling a jump. Although they can't jump, caution should be exercised around them. 

The jumping cholla cactus has unique cylindrical spiny joints or segmented-shaped stems covered in sharp spines that serve as a defense mechanism. These spines can vary in color, ranging from golden to reddish-brown, and they add to the distinctive appearance of the cholla cactus. 

As your Cholla jumping cactus matures, its stems can grow to various sizes, reaching heights of a few feet to up to 15 feet tall. The stems can also spread out, creating a bushy and visually striking plant. 

Cholla cactus flowers typically bloom during spring and summer in vibrant colors, ranging from shades of white, pink, green, red, and even yellow. These cup-shaped flowers emerge from the spiny stems of the cactus, creating a beautiful contrast between the soft petals and the sharp thorns. The flowers often open up during the day and close at night, attracting pollinators such as bees and butterflies. It's truly a magical experience to witness the cholla cactus burst into a display of colorful blooms. 

The cholla cactus, like many cacti, is generally not considered toxic to humans and pets. However, it's always a good idea to exercise caution when handling any cactus plant with spines or thorns. The spines of the cholla cactus can cause physical irritation and discomfort if they come into contact with the skin. So, it's best to avoid touching or brushing against the spines to prevent any potential irritation. 

Watering Needs 

Like other desert plants, the cholla cactus has adapted to survive in arid conditions. When it comes to watering the Chollas, it's important to follow the "soak and dry" method. This means giving your Cholla cactus a good watering until water drains out of the bottom of the pot and then allowing the soil to dry out completely before watering again. 

In spring and summer, during the active growing season, the cholla cactus will appreciate more frequent watering. You can water it every 1-2 weeks, depending on the temperature and humidity levels in your area. 

However, in fall and winter, during the dormant period, it's best to reduce watering to once every 4-6 weeks, as the cactus requires less moisture during this time. 

Remember, overwatering can be harmful to the Cylindropuntia cholla cactus. Signs of overwatering include yellowing or wilting of the stems, soft and mushy roots, or the presence of mold or fungus on the soil surface. To prevent these issues, make sure to allow the soil to dry out between waterings and avoid leaving your summer grower cactus sitting in standing water. 

Light Requirements

The tree like cactus cholla thrives in bright, indirect sunlight, making it an ideal plant for sunny locations. Whether you're growing it indoors or outdoors, providing ample light is crucial for its health and growth. 

When growing the cholla cactus indoors, place it near a south-facing window where it can receive plenty of sunlight throughout the day. If a south-facing window is not available, you can also use artificial grow lights to supplement the light requirements. 

For outdoor cultivation, find a spot that receives at least 6-8 hours of full sunlight daily. This could be a sunny patio, balcony, or garden area. Just make sure to protect the cholla cactus gardens from intense afternoon sun, especially during the hot summer months, as it can scorch the plant. If you live in a region with harsh winters, it's advisable to bring the cholla cactus indoors or provide some protection during freezing temperatures. 

Remember, proper lighting is essential for the cholla cactus garden to thrive and maintain its vibrant and healthy appearance. So, find a sunny spot and let that natural light work its magic! 

Optimal Soil & Fertilizer 

When it comes to soil, the cholla cactus prefers well-draining soil that mimics its natural desert habitat. A mix of sandy soil, perlite, and peat moss works well for this cactus. Excess water drains away from this type of soil, preventing root rot and other moisture-related problems.  You can also add some small rocks or gravel at the bottom of the pot to enhance drainage. Ideally, you want to use our specialized cactus potting mix that contains 5 natural substrates and organic mycorrhizae to promote the development of a strong root system that helps your cactus to thrive. 

As for fertilizing, the cholla cactus doesn't require frequent feeding like some other cacti. It's best to fertilize sparingly, about once a year, during the active growing season in the spring. A balanced (5-10-5), water-soluble fertilizer with a low nitrogen content is recommended. Follow the instructions for the correct dilution ratio and apply it to the soil around the base of the Cylindropuntia cactus. 

Remember, it's important not to over-fertilize the cholla cactus, as this can lead to excessive growth and weak stems. If you notice any signs of nutrient deficiency, such as pale or yellowing stems, you can increase the frequency of fertilization slightly. Always err on the side of caution and monitor the Cholla plant's response to the fertilizer. 

Hardiness Zone & More 

If you are growing your Cylindropuntia Cholla cactus indoors, it generally thrives in average room temperatures ranging from 65°F to 75°F. However, the jumping chollas can tolerate slightly cooler temperatures, down to 20°F during their dormant period in the fall and winter. It is one of those heat-tolerant cholla cacti and is well-suited to desert-like conditions with temperatures ranging from 80°F to 100°F. As for humidity, the cholla cactus is accustomed to low humidity levels, so there's no need to worry too much about it. Just make sure the air isn't overly dry, especially during winter when indoor heating can cause dryness. 

For outdoor cultivation, the cholla cactus typically thrives in USDA zones 8 to 10. These zones are characterized by mild winters and hot summers. The Cholla cactus is a not very frost-resistant cactus, hardy to 28° F (or less if very dry). However, indoors it is better not to expose it to temperatures lower than 32° F. 

Remember, the cholla cactus is a tough and resilient plant that can adapt to various conditions, but it's always best to provide it with an environment that closely resembles its natural habitat. 

Propagating Cholla Cactus 

Propagating the Cylindropuntia cholla cactus is an exciting and rewarding process. One common method is by using stem cuttings. To propagate your cholla cactus, start by carefully cutting a healthy stem segment from the main plant using a clean and sharp knife or scissors. Allow the cutting to dry and callus over for a few days to prevent rotting. Once calloused, you can plant the cutting in a well-draining cactus mix, ensuring that the bottom end is inserted into the soil. Keep the soil lightly moist and place the cutting in a warm and bright location, avoiding direct sunlight. 

With time and proper care, your cholla cactus cutting will develop roots and grow into a new plant. It's a wonderful way to expand your cholla cactus collection or share it with fellow plant enthusiasts. 

The Bottom Line 

Overall, the cholla cactus (Cylindropuntia) is a fascinating and resilient cactus plant that thrives in arid and desert-like environments. With its unique and striking appearance, it adds a touch of natural beauty to any indoor or outdoor space. The cholla cactus is known for its ability to adapt to various conditions, making it a great choice for both beginner and experienced plant enthusiasts.

It requires well-drained soil, ample sunlight, and minimal watering to thrive. Whether you choose to cultivate it indoors or outdoors, the cholla cactus will surely captivate your attention with its spiny stems and vibrant blooms. So, if you're looking to add a touch of desert charm to your plant collection, the Cylindropuntia cholla cactus is definitely worth considering. 

Bloom Season Spring, summer
Botanical Name Cylindropuntia cholla
Common Name Cholla cactus, Chain link cholla, Cholla
Dormancy Winter
Family Cactaceae
Flower Color White, Pink, deep purple, yellow, orange, green, red
Genus Cylindropuntia
Growth Habit Columnar
Growth Rate Moderate
Hardiness Zone 8, 9, 10
Mature Size 15 ft. tall
Native Area United states, northern Mexico
Plant Type Cactus
Propagation By stem cuttings
Resistance Drought tolerant, deer resistance, mild frost tolerant
Soil PH 6.5, Acidic, Neutral
Soil Type Cactus potting mix soil
Special Features Densely branched shrub
Sun Exposure Full sun, partia shade
Toxicity Safe for humans, Safe for pets
Watering Needs Low

Pests & Common Problems of Cholla Cactus

The Cholla cactus is susceptible to several pests and problems. These can cause damage to the Cholla plant by feeding on the leaves and stems, which can cause the plant to become weak and stressed.  

Scale Insects: These small, oval-shaped pests can attach themselves to the cactus and suck out its sap, causing yellowing and wilting of your Cholla cactus. 

Mealybugs: Mealybugs are tiny, white insects that often gather in cotton clusters on the cactus. They can cause stunted growth and weaken the Cholla plant. 

Spider Mites: These tiny pests are difficult to spot but can cause webbing and yellowing of the Cylindropuntia cactus. They feed on the plant's sap, leading to weakened and unhealthy growth. 

Root Rot: Overwatering or poorly draining soil can lead to root rot, which is a fungal infection that affects the roots of the cactus. It can cause wilting, yellowing, and even death of the Cholla plant. 

Droopy Stem: Drooping stems in cacti can indicate an environmental issue such as temperature shock, lack of water, or mealybug infestation. If temperature shock is suspected, propagating healthy stems can help save the plant, as some cacti struggle to recover from such shocks. 

Mushy Stem: Mushy stems on a cholla cactus indicate root rot, which should be promptly addressed. Use pruning shears or scissors to cut the stem above the rot, then follow propagation stems to root the remaining plant in fresh soil. This will prevent the rot from spreading to the entire Cholla plant. 

Sunburn: Exposing the cholla cactus to intense, direct sunlight for extended periods can result in sunburn. This can cause discoloration, scarring, and damage to the Cholla cactus. 

Mechanical Damage: The spines of the cholla cactus are sharp and can easily stick to clothing or skin. Be careful when handling the Cylindropuntia to avoid injury. 

Remember, proper Cholla cactus care, regular inspections, and prompt action can help prevent and address these issues effectively. 

FAQs of Cholla Cactus

How painful is cholla cactus? 

The spines of the cholla cactus can definitely cause some pain if they come into contact with your skin. The spines have tiny barbs that can easily hook onto you, making them difficult and sometimes painful to remove. It's best to avoid touching or getting too close to the spines to prevent any discomfort.  

If you do happen to get pricked, gently removing the spines and cleaning the area can help minimize any further irritation. So, it's always a good idea to admire the cholla cactus from a safe distance to avoid any unexpected prickly encounters! 

Does cholla cactus really jump? 

No, the cholla cactus doesn't actually jump. The name "jumping cholla" comes from the way its spines easily detach and cling onto anything that brushes against them, including animals or people. It can give the impression that the cactus is "jumping" onto you.  

So, while it may not physically jump, it can definitely make you jump if you accidentally come into contact with its spines! It's always good to be cautious around these prickly plants. 

Are cholla cactus poisonous? 

Cholla cacti are not considered poisonous to humans. However, it's important to be cautious around the spines, as they can cause pain and irritation if they come into contact with your skin. Just make sure to admire these unique and beautiful cacti from a safe distance to avoid any prickly encounters. 

How do you take care of the Cholla cactus? 

Taking care of the Cholla cactus (Cylindropuntia) involves providing it with well-draining soil and watering it sparingly in the growing season, as overwatering can lead to root rot.  

Additionally, it is important to protect the Cholla cactus from extreme temperatures outside of USDA zones 8-10 and provide it with adequate full sun to partial shade for at least 4-6 hours a day for healthy growth.

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