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  Gymnocalycium pfanzii
(Gymnocalycium pflanzii)
CACTUSPEDIA       

 


This South American beauty has a green body and nice white flowers with purple throat.
 

Description: Solitary or slowly clustering, with peculiar spine clusters characteristically bent backward in a distinctive fashion.
Stem: Flattened-globose,10-15 (25)cm in diameter, 10cm tall pale green, to olive green that can tinge of orangish purple in full sun. The epidermis has a velvety appearance. The apex is slightly depressed and woolly.
Ribs: 10 to 12 thick, large, divided into polygonal rounded (not chinned) tubercles, separated by arched furrows.
Roots: Fibrous
Areoles: Large long, oval 10x14 mm, with cream-yellowish wool, then blackish dismantling with time.
Spines: Strong, very stiff, bent backward, initially blackish with a brown base then becoming grey-pinkish to whitish brown with black point.
Radial spines:  (5-)7-9 up to 25 mm long
Central spines: One (or two)  of the same length.
Flowers:
Infundibuliform near the apex, diameter and height 45-50mm. Pericarpell dull green very short. External tepals spatulate, slightly bent outward , white with brownish green midrib. Inner tepals intern narrower, spatulate and slightly denticulate, white with carmine/pink purplish throat. Style carmine with carmine pink 10-12 lobes. Pollen yellow.
Fruits: Globose of approximately 2 cm of diameter, becoming red carmine with maturity. Pulp intense cherry-red.
Seeds: Microsemineum type, section pirisemineum, very small (0.6 X 0.4mm), testa reddish shining and smooth.
Remarks:
It is a very variable species with a wide distribution and several controversial varieties, forms and subspecies has been described. Of them only two has been recognized:

Recognized subspecies, varieties and forms:

subsp. argentinense coming from Gonzales, Salta, Argentina.
subsp. dorisie coming from Tarija, Bolivia.
 

 G. pflanzii has fairly heavy spines characteristically bent backward in a distinctive fashion.

Cultivation: Gymnocalycium are very gratifying plants, their culture is easy and their flowering is abundant if we give them a well drained relatively rich substrate (if possible not limestone)  Water regularly in summer (but do not overwater ) keep rather dry in winter, need frequent repottings and a very luminous exposure but avoid direct exposure to the sun rays. This species is particularly easy and accommodating, seldom suffer of cryptogamic diseases. Feed with a high potassium fertilizer  in summer.   Hardy as low as   -5° C (or less) if  kept dry.
Propagation: Direct sow after last frost or offsets. The grafting is useless (excluded the cultivars deprived of chlorophyll), it does not bring anything concrete

Family: Cactaceae (Cactus Family)

Conservation status: Listed in CITES appendix 2.

Scientific name:  Gymnocalycium pflanzii (Vaupel) Werdermann 1935

Origin:  South-east of Bolivia, North-West of Paraguay and North of Argentina (Provinces of Salta and Jujuy)
Habitat:  Grows often in deep, rich soil, rather in sunny rocky areas, on slopes or under spiny shrubs.

Etymology: Named in the honour of K Pflanz.

Synonyms:

  • Gymnocalycium marquezii Cárdenas1958
  • Gymnocalycium milaresii Cárdenas1966
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii var. milaresii Cárdenas) Donald 1971
  • Gymnocalycium izozogsii Cárdenas1966
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii var. izozogsii (Cárdenas) Donald 1971
  • Gymnocalycium chuquisacanum Cárdenas1966
  • Gymnocalycium comaparense Backeberg 1959 Not validly published
  • Gymnocalycium riograndense Cárdenas 1958
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii var. riograndense (Cárdenas) Donald 1971
  • Gymnocalycium lagunillasense Cardenas 1958
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii var. lagunillasense (Cárdenas) Donald 1971
  • Echinocactus pflanzii Vaupel 1923
  • Gymnocalycium zegarrae Cárdenas 1958
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii var. zegarrae  (Cárdenas) Donald 1971
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii var. albipulpa F. ritter 1980 Not validly published
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii subsp. argentinense H. Till & W. Till 1988
  • Gymnocalycium pflanzii subsp. dorisiae Amerhausen 1988

 

 


Photo of conspecific taxa, varieties, forms and cultivars of
Gymnoclycium pflanzii
:


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

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