Pediocactus despainii SB1014 Near San Rafael Swell,
Emory County, Utah, USA TL
Outdoors in the rock
garden - cultivated all year round without any sheltering.
Characteristics): It is a small
but during dry or cold
weather the plants may not appear above ground at all.
branching is quite common).
turbinate, 3.8-6 × 3-9.5 cm;
Can swell to up to
3.8-6 cm in diameter and 3-9.5 cm
Circular to oval,
Smooth, relatively hard,
radial, 9-15 per areole, spreading, white, 2-6 mm. (rarely in
old plants, a small
central spine of 4-8 mm).
Near the tip of the stem,
1.5-2.5 × 1.8-2.5 cm;
scales and outer
undulate; outer tepals yellow-bronze to peach-bronze or pink
midstripes, 4-10 × 3-6 mm; inner tepals yellow-bronze to
peach-bronze (rarely pink), 6-12 × 4-6 mm.
Blossoming time: April and
Green, drying reddish brown,
Flower buds stay
dormant on the plant
apex all the
Silky shining flowers, yellow bronze to peach bronze (rarely
Outdoor in the garden
Grafted on Echinopsis
Flowering size plants Grafted on a frost hardy Opuntia compressa
Welsh & S. Goodrich 1980
deposited in the
of the Brigham Young University,
around the San Rafael Swell, Utah, on
May 5th,1978 by Despain.
deposited in the Herbarium of the Brigham Young University, collected
around the San Rafael Swell, Utah, on the 7.5.1979 by Neese & Thorne.
Pediocactus despainii Welsh & Goodrich, Great Basin Naturalist,
San Rafael Cactus
Despain's pincushion cactus
Puebloa bradyi ssp.
winkleri var. despainii
(Welsh & Goodr.) A. Doweld 1999
Pediocactus simpsonii var.
Pediocactus bradyi var. despainii
(Welsh & Goodr.) Hochst.
Pediocactus bradyi subsp. despainii
(Welsh & Goodr.) Hochstätter 1995
This species is known in
the wild from only two
localities with a total of about 6000 individuals, it
to Emory county in central Utah.
grows on hilltops, benches, gentle slopes and
desert pavements of cobble or pebble, in
and mixed semi-arid
communities in fine textured soils rich in
ranging from 1450 to 2080 meters ASL. The habitat of this species is
In fact it is seriously
over collection, surface disturbance from off-road vehicle use,
humans trampling and cattle grazing. In addition part of the
of this species is exposed to dangers from
oil, gas, gypsum and
usually covers the plants during the coldest
Notes: This plant is a
spring ephemeral but can have - with a
environmental condition - a second short
growing season in
Autumn before the long
winter rest . In the
wild the species is easily overlooked except in the
spring, when they are in
This species was
originally listed in Appendix
CITES in 1975 and uplisted to
Appendix I in 1983.
derives from the Greek words “Pedion” meaning
“plain/level” referring to the general habitat of the plant on
the Great Plains, and the word
“cactus” ( an old genus name) The genus name implies
"Cactus of the plains"
derives from the name of the discoverers: K. Despain who
discovered the plant in 1978.
Rot prone and difficult to grow on it's own roots in
better and easier if
grafted. It needs regular water in late
winter, early spring (the short main
growing season), and also in
flower buds are produced and it starts growing again. The
dormant on the plant
apex all winter. They will then open in
spring when the temperature rises. To avoid any damage to
don’t let grafted plants that stay in the heated greenhouse completely
dry out. Some light watering in winter is useful for keeping the flower
Winter hardy (to
the plants grafted on Opuntia are good for
outdoor cultivation in
raised beds, rock gardens, balconies, window sills etc..