Cereus yungasensis A.Fuentes & Quispe
This species is native to Bolivia, restricted to the xeric forests of the Tuichi river basin in the Madidi National Park and Natural Integrated Management Area, north of the village of Apolo.
Cereus yungasensis is a tree-like cactus with segmented branches that arise from the main stem. It grows up to 40 feet (12 m) tall. The trunk is up to 8 inches (20 cm) in diameter. Branches are up to 10 feet (3 m) long, up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) in diameter, and have 3 to 5 ribs and 1 to 3 short spines per areole. The nocturnal flowers are reddish-white, up to 5.2 inches (13 cm) long, 0.5 inches (1.3 cm) in diameter, and appear in summer.
The specific epithet "yungasensis (yoon-gah-SEN-sis)" is a compound of two words, "yungas" and the Latin suffix "-ensis," meaning "of or from a place." The word "yungas" refers to the Bolivian Yungas region, where it is locally abundant.
How to Grow and Care for Cereus yungasensis
Light: This cactus likes full sun. It can handle partial shade but thrives in direct sunlight during the summer. A sunny window is a good spot to grow C. yungasensis indoors. Rotate the pot a quarter turn every week or two to encourage balanced growth. If possible, get your cactus outdoors from spring to fall.
Soil: C. yungasensis does not like to have "wet feet" and needs to be grown in well-draining soil. Use commercial soil mixes for cacti or make your own mix.
Hardiness: During the active growth period, this cactus likes warm temperatures, while in winter, it likes cooler temperatures. C. yungasensis can withstand temperatures as low as 30 to 50 °F (-1.1 to 10 °C), USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b.
Watering: From spring to fall, water thoroughly, but allow the soil to dry out before watering again. With the arrival of fall, gradually reduce the watering frequency. During the winter, when C. yungasensis is dormant, give it just enough water to prevent shrinking.
Fertilizing: During its growing season, this cactus likes regular fertilizing. A balanced, water-soluble fertilizer, diluted to 1/4 strength, can be added to the water for each watering. A 10-10-10 fertilizer is ideal. Instead of making a solution of water and fertilizer, there are also dry fertilizers. Do not fertilize during the winter.
Repotting: While C. yungasensis is young, it is recommended to repot each year in early spring. Once it matures, repot when your cactus is outgrowing its pot.
Propagation: Using stem cuttings is the easiest method to propagate C. yungasensis because seed propagation is a slow process. Planting of the cuttings is best done when the cactus is actively growing. Spring and summer is the best time to sow the seeds.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Cereus.
Toxicity of Cereus yungasensis
C. yungasensis is non-toxic to humans or animals.
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