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Echinopsis huascha var. grandiflora (Red Torch Cactus)

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Scientific Name

Echinopsis huascha var. grandiflora

Common Names

Red Torch Cactus, Red Torch, Desert's Blooming Jewel

Synonyms

Chamaecereus grandiflorus, Helianthocereus grandiflorus, Lobivia grandiflora, Lobivia huascha var. grandiflora, Trichocereus grandiflorus

Scientific Classification

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

Description

Echinopsis huascha var. grandiflora is a basally branching columnar cactus with stems that grow up to 3 feet (90 cm) tall. It somewhat resembles Echinopsis schickendantzii but has mostly bright red flowers. The stems are globose to short-cylindrical and up to 4 inches (10 cm) in diameter. They have reddish, much shorter spines than Echinopsis huascha. Diurnal flowers are funnel-shaped, up to 4 inches (10 cm) long, and appear near the end of the stems.

Echinopsis huascha var. grandiflora (Red Torch Cactus)

Photo by Cok Grootscholten

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

If you can grow cacti and succulents successfully, you can likely grow the Echinopsis species without much trouble. Like many cacti, they prefer a drying period between waterings, even to the point where they slightly wilt. When you water, however, you should water deeply. The plant will noticeably plump up. The cactus mustn't be exposed to prolonged dampness and sitting water. Never let your cactus sit in a dish of water. Lastly, make sure to fertilizer during the growing season for the best results.

Echinopsis can be easily rooted from offsets, which tend to cluster around the base of the mother plant. Cut offsets close to the stem at the narrowest possible place. When rooting cacti from cuttings, let the fresh cutting dry out slightly on a paper towel and cut the cacti at the narrowest place possible. After a few days to a few weeks, depending on the size of the cut surface, the cut surface should have dried out and formed a callous or slightly rough opening. Once the callous has formed, place the cutting in a rooting mixture of fast-draining cacti soil. See more at How to Grow and Care for Echinopsis.

Origin

Echinopsis huascha var. grandiflora is native to Argentina.

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