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Cereus kroenleinii


Scientific Name

Cereus kroenleinii N.P.Taylor


Cereus kroenleinii, Cereus phatnospermus subsp. kroenleinii, Monvillea kroenleinii

Scientific Classification

Family: Cactaceae
Subfamily: Cactoideae
Tribe: Cereeae
Genus: Cereus


This species is native to Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay.


Cereus kroenleinii, also known as Cereus phatnospermus subsp. kroenleinii, is a shrubby cactus with erect or creeping stems, each with 4 to 5 ribs. It grows up to 6.7 feet (2 m) tall with a spread of 20 feet (6 m). Stems are dark green covered with a powdery bloom. They are cylindrical, up to 13.1 feet (4 m) long, and up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter. Each areole bears one central spine and five radial spines which are surrounded by a tuft of long, white woolly hairs. Night-blooming flowers are white, pink at the tip of the perianth segments, funnel-shaped, and up to 4 inches (10 cm) long. Fruits are red tinged with purple, egg-shaped, and up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) long.

The specific epithet "kroenleinii" honors Marcel Kroenlein (1928-1994), the long-time director of the famous Jardin Exotique of Monaco.

How to Grow and Care for Cereus kroenleinii

Light: Cereus cacti like full sun. They can handle partial shade but thrives during the summer in direct sunlight. Sunny south, east, or west window is a good spot to grow a Cereus indoors.

Soil: These cacti do not like to have "wet feet" and need to be grown in well-draining soil. Use commercial soil mixes for cacti and succulents or make your own potting mix.

Hardiness: Cereus kroenleinii can withstand temperatures as low as 20 to 50 °F (-6.7 to 10 °C), USDA hardiness zones 9a to 11b.

Watering: From spring to fall, during the active growth period water thoroughly, but allow the soil to dry out before watering again. With the arrival of fall, gradually reduce the watering frequency.

Fertilizing: During their growing season, Cereus cacti like regular fertilizing. A balanced, water-soluble fertilizer, which has been diluted to 1/4 strength, can be added to the water for each watering. Do not feed during the winter.

Repotting: While Cereus cacti are young, it is recommended to repot each year in early spring to provide them with fresh soil, inspect the root system, and move them to larger pots if necessary.

Propagation: Using stem cuttings is the easiest method to propagate Cereus because seed propagation is a slow process.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Cereus.

Toxicity of Cereus kroenleinii

Cereus cacti are non-toxic to humans or animals.


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