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Uebelmannia flavispina forma cristata
Uebelmannia flavispina is one of the most peculiar and rare cactus
famous for its yellow bristly appearance with several ribs and
but this beautiful crested form is extremely rare in cactus collection.
The most striking feature is the golden spines it possesses, which serve
to protect it from the harsh sun common to its native habitat. More
precisely the dense
yellow benefit the plant
by reducing sun exposure and by trapping a layer of air next to the
cactus body. This helps to cool the plant in the summer and keep it
warmer in the winter. .
Stem: Up to 12 cm in widths very woolly in the apex. Plants
in this genus always show woodiness in the lower stem as they age.
Ribs: Vertical, prominent
Areoles: Close set.
Central spines: 1 to 4 up to long 1.5 cm.
Flowers: Yellow and diurnal in late autumn, or spring.
Photo of conspecific
taxa, varieties, forms and cultivars of
plants belonging to the Uebelmannia
Taxon has lots of synonyms ( like
many other cacti) with several controversial
varieties and subspecies, and comprises a
multitude of different forms, but where each form is linked to others by
populations of plants with intermediate characteristics):
Scientific name: Uebelmannia
flavispina Buining & Brederoo
Place of publication: Succulenta (Netherlands) 52:9.
Garden origin (Nursery
Conservation status: Listed in
CITES appendix 1.
Etymology: The subspecies name flavispina comes from the Latin
for "yellow spines".
- Uebelmannia pectinifera subsp. flavispina
(Buining & Brederoo) P. J. Braun & Esteves
Place of publication: Succulenta (Netherlands) 74:135. 1995
Cultivation: Not easy; it has a large root and
lives among rocks. This tropical cactus prefers loves warm, moist, humid
conditions, and mist spraying is a must in summer. Water regularly
during the growing season and use a very draining mineral potting
substrate. At the onset of winter, do not water. Uebelmannias need heat
all year round, and extra winter heat; minimum 10°C is best. Avoid any
frost. Keep cool in summer. This plant proves to be root prone if kept
too cold in winter. To help stop this, a good deep collar of pumice or
lava grit is an excellent idea. It prefers a full sun position and
possibly afternoon shade in summer. If you can place it so that this
occurs, the plant will be much happier.
Propagation: By seeds. Germinating seeds can also be tricky. But
plants are often grafted making them easier to grow, particularly
through the winter. If possible, using a rootstock that is hardier than
the Uebelmannia is the ideal.