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Browningia candelaris (Candleholder Cactus)

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Scientific Name

Browningia candelaris (Meyen) Britton & Rose

Common Names

Candleholder Cactus

Synonyms

Cactus candelaris (basionym)

Scientific Classification

Family: Cactaceae
Subfamily: Cactoideae
Tribe: Browningieae
Genus: Browningia

Description

Browningia candelaris has a tree-like habit of growth, reaching a height of up to 20 feet (6 m). When mature, it has a distinct unbranched trunk with a diameter of up to 20 inches (50 cm), which is densely covered with straight brown spines, up to 6 inches (15 cm) long. Above the trunk the plant has a crown of branching thinner stems, which may be entirely spineless or bear spines reduced to a few bristles. All the stems have about 50 ribs. The white flowers are tubular, up to 7 inches (12.5 cm) long and are followed by fleshy edible fruits, yellow when ripe and up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) long.

How to Grow and Care

Like most cacti, Cereus are fairly low-maintenance and hardy. Make sure they receive enough water without becoming waterlogged, especially during the summer, and fertilize them for best results. If the roots have become black or overly soft, the cactus could be experiencing root rot – cut away the affected parts and replant. Like all cacti, give them lots of direct sunlight, especially during the summer. Well-drained soil is best, and most Cereus perform well in a soil that contains some organic material. Some recommend avoiding a soil that contains sphagnum moss, though – it can make the cactus vulnerable to root rot.

It may become necessary to repot your Cereus if it outgrows its container. If so, make sure the soil is dry and then remove the pot… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Cereus.

Origin

Native to northern Chile and southern Peru.

Links

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