Echinocactus grusonii Hildmann 1891

golden barrel cactus

Plants solitary, globose to short cylindrical, light green, 20130 cm (7.9-51 in) high, 40-80 cm (16-31 in) in diameter. Ribs 21-37, narrow. Spines golden yellow when young, becoming dark with age. Central spines 3-4, straight, erect, to 5 cm (2 in) long. Radial spines 8-10, somewhat divergent, to 3 cm (1.2 in) long. Flowers often never fully opening, yellow, 4-6 cm (1.6-2.4 in) long, 3-5 cm (1.2-2 in) in diameter. Fruits round to somewhat oblong, greenish, 12-20 mm (0.50.8 in) long, covered with whitish wool. Seeds shiny dark brown, smooth. Distribution: a restricted area, often on steep hillsides or cliffs, in Queretaro, Mexico. Echinocactus grusonii is almost extinct in the wild because of the construction of a dam. This species is possibly the most widely propagated of all cacti, however, and exists in almost all public and private collections as well as in many window planters.

Echinocactus grusonii, also illustrated on page 73

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