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Acanthocalycium spiniflorum


Scientific Name

Acanthocalycium spiniflorum (K.Schum.) Backeb.

Common Names

Barbed Wire Cactus, Sword Pear, Triangle Cactus, Dildo Cactus, Night-Blooming Cereus


Echinocactus spiniflorus (basionym), Acanthocalycium violaceum, Echinopsis spiniflora, Echinopsis violacea, Lobivia spiniflora

Scientific Classification

Family: Cactaceae
Subfamily: Cactoideae
Tribe: Trichocereeae
Genus: Acanthocalycium


Acanthocalycium spiniflorum is usually solitary or slowly branching through basal shoots, it can become an upright cactus with stems up to 6 inches (15 cm) tall and up to 4 inches (10 cm) in diameter. The spines are arranged neatly in rows down the stem. The showy flowers range from white to pinkish-lilac and are bell- to funnel-shaped erect, up to 2 inches (5 cm) long and up to 1.6 inches (4 cm) in diameter.

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How to Grow and Care

Overall, these are very attractive cacti for dish gardens or indoor display. A collection of them is especially attractive, as they look like a collection of balls tossed upon the ground. It's critical, however, to never let these cactus be exposed to prolonged periods in water, or even very high humidity. They will suffer from rot in the presence of humidity. Echinocactus are vulnerable to pests including aphids, mealy bugs, scale, and white fly. If possible, identify the infestation as early as possible and treat with the leave toxic option.

It's best to repot in the beginning of the growing season, or summer. To repot a cacti, make sure the soil is dry before repotting, then gently remove the pot. Knock away the old soil from the roots, making sure to remove any rotted or dead roots in the process. Treat any cuts with a fungicide. Place the plant in its new pot and backfill with potting soil, spreading the roots out as you repot. Leave the plant dry for a week or so, then begin to water lightly to reduce the risk of root rot… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Echinocactus.


Native to Argentina (Cordoba).


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