Ferocactus latispinus

Ferocactus latispinus


Ferocactus latispinus (Devil's Tongue Barrel Cactus)

Ferocactus latispinus (Devil's Tongue Barrel Cactus) is an attractive cactus with a globular, light green stem that usually has 21 acute ribs. It grows…

Description [ edit ]

Ferocactus latispinus grows as a single globular light green cactus reaching the dimensions of 30 cm (12 in) in height and 40 cm (16 in) across, with 21 acute ribs. Its spines range from reddish to white in colour and are flattened and reach 4 or 5 cm long. Flowering is in late autumn or early winter. [3] The funnel-shaped flowers are purplish or yellowish and reach 4 cm long, and are followed by oval-shaped scaled fruit which reach 2.5 cm (1 in) long. [1]

Subspecies [ edit ]

Two subspecies are recognised, differing in their number of radial spines. [1]

  • Ferocactus latispinus subsp. latispinus — 9–15 radial spines, Devil's Tongue Barrel or Crow's Claw Cactus. [3]
  • Ferocactus latispinus subsp. spiralis — 5–7 radial spines.

Ferocactus latispinus - garden

Origin and Habitat: This species has an extensive distribution in central and southern Mexico ( Durango, through Zacatecas, Aguascalientes, east to the western parts of San Luis Potosí, Hidalgo and Puebla, as well as to eastern Jalisco, Guanajuato, Querétaro and Mexico State. ). This cactus has widespread and abundant subpopulations.
Altitude range: This species grows at elevations of 600 to 2,600 metres above sea level.
Habitat: Ferocactus latispinus is common in dryer areas and grasslands of central Mexico and in a variety of xerophyllous scrub types, grassland, and open Quercus forest (in Oaxaca) where it is usually found growing on silty flats and plains. It may also occur on rocky hillsides. The range of this species is north of that of closely related Ferocactus latispinus ssp. spiralis (syn. Ferocactus recurvus). It grows in association with other plant species, including: Echinocactus horizonthalonius, Coryphantha clava, Coryphantha pallida, Stenocereus marginatus, Echinocereus cinerascens, Ferocactus histrix, Hechtia podantha, Agave salmiana, Agave kerchovei, Agave parryi, Agave potatorum, Myrtillocactus geometrizans, Opuntia scheeri, Opuntia imbricata, Opuntia lasiacantha, Opuntia spinulifera, Opuntia robusta, Coryphantha erecta, Echinofossulocactus anfractuosus, Neolloydia conoidea, Echinocactus platyacanthus, Heliabravoa chende, Echeveria secunda, Jatropha spathulata, Schinus molle, Arbutus glandulosa, Dodonaea viscosa, Selaginella lepidophylla, Dasylirion acrotrichum and Yucca filifera. Goats disperse viable seeds of this and other species. Local collecting for national ornamental plant trade affects subpopulations near villages and towns. Livestock and goats degrade the vegetation where this species occurs. The plants are collected locally for medicinal use and consumed raw or as a candy.

  • Ferocactus latispinus Britton & Rose
    • Bisnaga latispina (Haw.) Doweld
    • Bisnaga recurva subs. latispina (Haw.) Doweld
    • Cactus latispinus Haw.
    • Echinocactus cornigerus var. latispinus C.F.Först.
    • Echinocactus cornigerus f. latispinus (Haw.) Voss
    • Echinocactus latispinus (Haw.) hort. ex C.F.Först.
    • Echinocactus recurvus var. latispinus (Haw.) Mittler
    • Ferocactus latispinus var. latispinus (C.F.Först.) Backeb. & F.M.Knuth
    • Mammillaria latispina (Haw.) Tate
    • Melocactus latispinus (Haw.) Pfeiff.

Description: Ferocactus latispinus is a modest-sized barrel cactus and probably the best-known of the ferocacti, and if you want only one from this group, this is the one to choose. Three subspecies are recognized, the nominate form and subsp. greenwoodii (Glass) N.P.Taylor and subsp. spiralis (Karw. ex Pfeiff.) N.P.Taylor.
Habit: It is a perennial stem succulent, which normally remains a solitary plant, without dividing or producing offsets.
Stem: Light green to blue-green, hemispherical or flat-topped, 25 to 45 cm in diameter, 10-35(-40) cm tall, most often wider than tall.
Ribs: 13 to 23 ribs (but usually 21), sharp and prominent.
Areoles: Large on bumps along the ribs with grey to blackish felt.
Radial spines: (6-)9-12(-15) up to 2,5 cm long, spreading out, smaller, annulate, finely needle-like, straight that have almost no width at all, translucent white, yellow, pink or reddish.
Central spines: 4 (or more) large, transversely striated, more highly coloured than radials of which the lowest one is conspicuously wider, thick and flat (4-9 mm broad), up to 4(-7,5) cm long apically bent downward or hooked and lie flat against the body (near straight in Ferocactus latispinus var. greenwoody). This prominent spine is usually red or grey-red, but may be amber-coloured or yellow (Ferocactus latispinusvar. flavispinus). The other central spines are still stout, but much narrower and not curved.
Flowers: Campanulate, beautiful “glassy” rich-rose, purple, mauve, purple-blue or, sometime, straw-yellow, and fragrant up to 2,5-3,5(-6) cm long and about 3 cm broad. Perianth segments narrowly oblong, acute. Scales on the ovary closely imbricated, thin and papery, ovate with thin ciliate margins. Scales on flower tube similar similar to those on the ovary but longer.
Blooming time: Late autumn to early winter, usually in October, but it usually flowers only if the weather is warm and sunny ( need a fair amount of bright sunlight to form) Unlike most of the others, which usually need to reach relatively large size this species blooms very early, many young plants will bloom when they reach only 10 cm in diameter. It might be noted that this is not true of the closely related Ferocactus latispinus ssp. spiralis (syn. Ferocactus recurvus)
Fruit: Sperical to elongate about 2,5-8 cm long. 1,8-2,5 cm broad, clothed in tapering scales.
Seeds: Dark-brown, reniform, slightly pitted, 1,2-1,5 mm long.

Subspecies, varieties, forms and cultivars of plants belonging to the Ferocactus latispinus group

  • Ferocactus cornigerus" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/21507/Ferocactus_cornigerus'> Ferocactus cornigerus (DC.) : Ferocactus corniger and Ferocactus latispinus are synonyms although the wide variety of features in the same species makes it possible to find plants with certain superficial dissimilarities.
  • Ferocactus latispinus" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/4259/Ferocactus_latispinus'> Ferocactus latispinus Britton & Rose : has hemispherical or flat-topped stems, with 4 large red or grey-red central spines of which the lowest one is conspicuously wider, flat, hooked up to 4 cm long. Distribution: central and southern Mexico (Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, and south)
  • Ferocactus latispinus var. flavispinus" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/4261/Ferocactus_latispinus_var._flavispinus'> Ferocactus latispinus var. flavispinus (Haage ex C.F.Först.) Backeb. & F.M.Knuth : The plants are identical in shape to the standard species but the spines are all yellow.
  • Ferocactus latispinus var. flavispinus f. cristatus" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/14260/Ferocactus_latispinus_var._flavispinus_f._cristatus'> Ferocactus latispinus var. flavispinus f. cristatus hort. : It is a strong crested cactus with yellow spines.
  • Ferocactus latispinus var. greenwoodii" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/4273/Ferocactus_latispinus_var._greenwoodii'> Ferocactus latispinus var. greenwoodii (Glass) N.P.Taylor : has ball-shaped or flat-topped stems, with less curved to nearly terete central spines and only 4-5 radial spines. Distribution: between Oaxaca city and Tehuantepec in the valleys of Totolapan and Nejapa.
  • Ferocactus latispinus subs. spiralis" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/4281/Ferocactus_latispinus_subs._spiralis'> Ferocactus latispinus subs. spiralis (Karw. ex Pfeiff.) N.P.Taylor : has pherical to elongate stems occasionally up to 1 metre tall and 5 to 7 stout radial spines. Distribution: endemic to southern Puebla and southern Oaxaca.
  • Ferocactus recurvus" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/4280/Ferocactus_recurvus'> Ferocactus recurvus (Mill.) Borg : (is a rejected name for Ferocactus latispinus var. spiralis) has pale pink flowers, with a deep almost maroon-pink throat.

Notes: This species usually flowers only if the weather is warm and sunny ( need a fair amount of bright sunlight to form) It blooms very early, many young plants will bloom when they reach 10 cm in diameter.

Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) Edward Anderson “The Cactus family” Timber Press, Incorporated, 2001
2) James Cullen, Sabina G. Knees, H. Suzanne Cubey "The European Garden Flora Flowering Plants: A Manual for the Identification of Plants Cultivated in Europe, Both Out-of-Doors and Under Glass" Cambridge University Press, 11/Aug/2011
3) David R Hunt Nigel P Taylor Graham Charles International Cactaceae Systematics Group. "The New Cactus Lexicon" dh books, 2006
4) N. L. Britton, J. N. Rose “The Cactaceae. Descriptions and Illustrations of Plants of the Cactus Family” Volume II, The Carnegie Institution of Washington, Washington 1920
5) George Edmund Lindsay, J. Hugo Cota “The taxonomy and ecology of the genus Ferocactus: explorations in the USA and Mexico” Tireless Termites Press, 1996
7) Curt Backeberg “Die Cactaceae, Handbuch der Kakteenkunde:Volume 5, Cereoideae (Boreocactinae)” 1961
8) Hiroshi Hirao “Colour encyclopaedia of cacti” Seibundo Shinkosha, 1979
9) Willy, Cullmann Erich Götz, Gerhard Gröner: Kakteen: Kultur, Vermehrung und Pflege. Lexikon der Gattungen und Arten. Ulmer, Stuttgart edn 5.1984
10) William Davidson “The illustrated directory of house plants: a practical guide to growing over 500 plants for the home” Salamander, 01/Nov/1990
11) Michael Taborsky, Barbara Taborsky “Advances in Ethology”, Volume 32 Parey, 1997
12) Brian Lamb “Letts guide to cacti of the world” Letts, 17/Oct/1991
13) Sánchez , E., Guadalupe Martínez, J., Bárcenas Luna, R., Hernández, H.M., Gómez-Hinostrosa, C. & Cházaro, M. 2013. Ferocactus latispinus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T151750A557418. Downloaded on 25 April 2016.
14) Arias, M.S., Gama, S. and Guzmán, U. 1997. Flora del Valle de Tehuacán-Cuicatlán. Fasículo 14. Cactaceae A.L. Juss. Instituto de Biología, UNAM, Mexico.
15) Baraza, E. & A. Valiente-Banuet. “Seed dispersal by domestic goats in a semiarid thornscrub of Mexico.” Journal of Arid Environments 72: 1973-1976. 2008.
16) Canales-Martínez, M., T. Hernández-Delgado, J. Caballero-Nieto, A. Romo de Vivar-Romo, A. Durán-Díaz, R. Lira-Saade. “Análisis cuantitativo del conocimiento tradicional de las plantas medicinales de San Rafael, Coxcatlán, Valle de Tehuacán-Cuicatlán, México.” Acta Botánica Mexicana 75: 21-24. 2006
17) González-Insuasti, S. & J. Caballero. “Managing plant resources: how intensive can it be?” Human Ecology 35: 303-314. 2007
18) Hernández, H.M., Gómez-Hinostrosa, C. and Goettsch, B. “Checklist of Chihuahuan Desert Cactaceae.” Harvard Papers in Botany 9(1): 51-68. 2004
19) Méndez-Larios, I., Lira, R., Godínez-Alvarez, H., Dávila, P. and Ortiz, E. “Proposal for the establishment of the core zones in the Biosphere Reserve of Tehuacán-Cuicatlán, Mexico.” Biodiversity and Conservation 15: 1627-1659. 2006

In habitat. Mexico. Photo by: Agócs György
- It is a beautiful members of the genus Ferocactus and is commonly called barrel cactus, it is fairly popular in cultivation because it blooms very early. The young spines have a great looking red. Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Ferocactus latispinus Photo by: Frikkie Hall
Ferocactus latispinus Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli

Watch the video: 20 Variedades increíbles de Ferocactus