Aztekium ritteri f. cristata
cause of cresting: The cause of cresting is not fully explained; biologists
disagree as to why some cactus grow in this unusual form. Some
speculate that it is a genetic mutation. Others say it is the result of
lightning strike or freeze damage, but whatever the stimulus, the
growth point of the stem has switched from a geometric point, to a line,
which folds and undulates as the crest expands. Though these crested
cactus are somewhat rare (1 to 10 in 250,000), cresting occurs naturally
throughout the range of the most species.
a crest can appear any time, but development of crests on large
cactus species ( such as the saguaro Carnegia gigantea) in the
of ontogenesis is unlikely. On the other hand, small species may crest
early already at the
Cultivation: It is of extreme slow growth -
probably the slowest of the entire cactus family. It usually takes
several years for growth to be noticeable. Prefer some shading.
Reproduction: They are usually grafted,
It is also possible to root pieces of crest from grafted plants but with
Photo of conspecific taxa, varieties, forms and
cultivars of Aztekium ritterii.