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Echinocactus grusonii  "minor" f. cristata CACTUSPEDIA       

 


This is the tiniest crested form of the famous "Golden Barrel Cactus". A dwarf form covered by touch friendly spines and looking quite dissimilar to the standard species.
 

Description: This is a very nice crested cactus, easily recognizable for its short yellowish bristly soft spines. The standard "Golden Barrel Cactus" (E. grusonii) is a large spherical barrel cactus  with imposing strong yellow spines, and one of one of the more common an known cacti. This species is widely cultivated and gave rise to a number of different cultivars, monstrose and crested forms. The E. grusonii forma minor cristata - here described - is the smallest and delicate crested variant, quite rare in collection and priced for its reduced size and touch friendly covering of soft spines, it will form tangled brain-like green mounds and can reach a considerable size (up to 30 cm tall and in diameter, or more ).
Spines:
It has few short and more or less twisted spines,
bristly, glassy  pale-yellowhis spines all quite similar in shape,   that loosely cover the surface of the stems.
Remarks: The cause of cresting is not fully explainedBiologists disagree as to why some plants grow in this unusual form.  Some speculate that it is a genetic mutation. Others say it is the result of a strike of lightning  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 E. grusonii are rare, cresting occurs naturally, and can be encountered in many other cactus species.
 

Cultivation:  It is of easy cultivation. Require full sun or half shade. The plants on their own roots  should be kept in a deep pot with a very draining mineral substrate. But be particularly careful with watering, which all crested plant require (rot sensitive). Keep dry during the winter rest. Since they are rapid growers, and need plenty of space for their roots, repotting should be done every other year or when the plant has outgrown its pot.
The grafted plants are easy to grow and will form a large brain-like mounds  with age.  Watering during the active growing season (spring and summer); this will encourage steady growth, and prevent the crest from becoming flabby. It need a well drained soil mix. Water
generously during the summer but allow to dry fully before watering again. During the winter months they should be kept rather dry.

Propagation: Propagate from cuttings or graft.
 

Photo gallery: Alphabetical listing of Cactus and Succulent pictures published in this site.

Photo gallery ECHINOCACTUS

Family: Cactaceae (Cactus Family)

Scientific Name: Echinocactus grusonii forma minor cristata

Origin Garden origin (Nursery produced cultivar)

Conservation status: Listed in CITES appendix 2.

Vernacular Names: Crested Golden barrel cactus (dwarf form) also known as Golden ball cactus, Mother-in-law's-seat, Mother-in-law's-cushion.
 

 



This is a different and  very rare cultivar, with short thin spines.

Photo of conspecific taxa, varieties, forms and cultivars of Echinocactus grusonii:



 

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This old page has been moved! Click the link next on the right to enter the new Enciclopedia of Cacti. We hope you find this new site informative and useful.

The Encyclopedia of Cacti