Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Mammillaria dehertiana ssp. dodsonii

This interesting subspecies, like subspecies dehertiana, grows on top of mountains whenever there is a clearing in pine forests on exposed rocks among moss. The subspecies dehertiana is found from around the city of Oaxaca, Between Nejapa, Juquilla Mixes and Lachuguiri while subspecies dodsonii grows near Benito Juarez and near San Antonio Cuajimoloyas. The ones pictured were found near San Antonio Cuajimoloyas. 

According to the late Alfred Lau one Taxon integrates into the other as one gets further South and East of Oaxaca. Even The late Werner Repenhagen who is considered as a splitter declared that they are one variable species.

Mammillaria dehertiana ssp. dodsonii has large purple flowers, up to 4cm long. It is found solitary or offsets in the wild and in cultivation it is easier to keep alive than M. deheriana ssp. dehertiana.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Pachycereus weberi

As one enters the Tehuacan-Cuicatlan area in the States of Puebla and Oaxaca, one is confronted with a majestic vista of cereus forests some of whom comprises the largest species of Cacti in existence; Pachycereus weberi. The Tehuacan-Cuicatlan area is one of the richest cacti habitat in the whole of Mexico. This species certainly rivals Carnegea gigantea in sheer volume of branches if not in height.

Its flowers are from pale yellow to white and are produced on the sides of the branches, near the apex. It is mentioned in literature that the flowers are nocturnal but if so they certainly remain open during the day. Pachycereus weberi grows to about 10 meters in height. It starts to branch from approximately two meters from the base and produces candelabra-like branches. Each branch is bluish green in colour and the areoles are spaced from 3 to 5 cm apart.                                                                                                     


Monday, April 11, 2011

Mammillaria klissingiana

I found this species growing very near the town of Guadalcazar, San Luis Potosi. Previously I had found this plant, albeit more elongated forms, near Jaumave in Tamaulipas.

This form is more round and compact resembling M. formosa in shape. M. brauniana has been referred under M. klissingiana and further study may link this species with M. formosa and even M. leucocentra which some authorities claim to be a subspecies of M. geminispina.

Whatever species it is called it is a joy to find and several hours of searching only produced a few plants mostly found near the shade of rocky outcrops or under bushes.

Other cacti found in the vicinity were Echinocereus cinerascens, and an Opuntia species.

All the M. klissingiana found had pink to reddish flowers but one species growing in the proximity of a pink flowering species had pale flowers as can be seen in these pictures.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Agave victoria-reginae

Agave victoria-reginae can be found growing at Huasteca canyon, Santa Catarina, Monterrey, in the state of Nuevo Leon.

It is found on both sides of the canyon on sheer rock together with Epithelantha micromeris,Echinocereus viereckii and Mammillaria ritteriana.

It is not difficult to find and can be seen from the dirt road leading to the canyon but not very easy to reach due to the almost vertical cliffs.

Like all Agave species, This plant will die after flowering as the flowering stock is terminal. It rarely offsets before it flowers. Yet it produces hundreds of seeds that are dispersed throughout the valley.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Mammillaria seed pods

These Mammillaria have been pollinated artificially during the winter and spring and are now producing seed pods. Some have and can be expected to flower again.

This picture shows the fruits of Mammillaria haageana ssp. schmollii (bottom of first picture). Immediately above to the right is M. formosa and to its left is M. clavidiae. Just visible in the right hand corner is a form of M. haageana found at Colonia De 

Los cruces, Puebla. On the left side is M. bocensis.

This picture shows the fleshy fruits of M. petrophila L. 052. This plant comes from Southern Baja California, Mexico.

Also visible in this picture are the dried fruits of M. elongata.

This plant comes by the tongue- twisting name of M. huitzilopochtli. There are several forms of which two can be seen in this picture. All forms of this species comes from the Tomellin Canyon of Oaxaca. The seeds were obtained from the plants discoverer, the late Dr. Alfred Lau.

Immediatly visible to the left is M. saxicola and M. sempervivi.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Yellow flowered Mamms

This dainty cactus rewards the grower with showy and lemon-scented yellow flowers. Mammillaria surculosa is reported from the Mexican states of Tamaulipas and San Luis Potosi. In the wild it forms dense mats.

In cultivation it quickly clusters in a few years. The flowers are very individual for this genus with crocus-like petals.

This and the following plant were previously placed in the genus Dolichothele due to the large tubercles and relatively large flowers. Dolicothele has been relegated to Subgenus under Mammillaria.

Mammillaria baumii is another sweetly-scented yellow-flowered charming plant. In habitat it is often found in the shade mostly on bare rocks.

It comes from the Mexican State of Tamaulipas. I have seen this species near the town of San Vicente where it forms sizable low mats.