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Ariocarpus agavioides (Tamaulipas Living Rock Cactus)


Scientific Name

Ariocarpus agavioides (Castañeda) E.S.Anderson

Common Names

Tamaulipas Living Rock Cactus, Magueyito


Neogomesia agavoides, Ariocarpus kotschoubeyanus subsp. agavoides

Scientific Classification

Family: Cactaceae
Subfamily: Cactoideae
Tribe: Cacteae
Genus: Ariocarpus


Ariocarpus agavioides – Tamaulipas Living Rock Cactus is a small rosette-shaped cactus with short, stiff, dark green tubercles. The subglobose, flattened stem is greenish brown in color and up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) long and up to 3.2 (8 cm) in diameter. The rest of the plant is rootstock growing underground. The divergent, flaccid tubercles are flattened adaxially. The areoles at the tips of the tubercles are up to 0.5 inch (1.2 cm) long. Some individuals lack spines, while others have whitish spines up to a centimeter long. Plants 5 to 8 years of age begin to grow magenta flowers up to 2 inches (5 cm) long. The globose fruit is reddish in color and up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) long.

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How to Grow and Care

You should plant your Ariocarpus in soil specifically formulated for cacti. You can buy cactus mix at your local nursery. Do not use generic soil mixes, because they will not provide enough aeration and drainage. Additionally, using a container without a hole, whether it is a pot or a terrarium, is a bad idea for the same reason. Ariocarpus need a lot of sun. However, in hot, dry areas, they can be damaged by excessive sunlight, so you should either use a shadecloth to limit their sun, or move them out of the sun during the hottest hours of the day. In more temperate areas, direct sunlight is fine. Ariocarpus plants prefer to be kept at room temperature or slightly lower, and in low humidity… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Ariocarpus.


It is endemic to Mexico and grows in dry shrubland in rocky calcareous substrates.


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