Ferocactus emoryi (Engelm.) Orcutt
Emory's Barrel Cactus, Emory Barrel, Coville's Barrel Cactus, Coville's Cactus, Traveler's Friend, Arizona Barrel Cactus, Long-Spined Barrel Cactus, Sonora Barrel
Ferocactus covillei, Echinocactus emoryi, Echinocactus covillei, Ferocactus emoryi subsp. emoryi
Ferocactus emoryi is a cactus with a solitary, erect green stem with 15 to 30 ribs shallowly notched immediately above each areole and clusters of reddish to reddish-gray spines along the ribs. The stem is spherical to ovoid-cylindrical and grows up to 8.2 feet (2.5 m) tall and up to 3.3 feet (1 m) in diameter. Each areole bears one central and 5 to 9 radial spines, all robust and rigid. The central spine is up to 4 inches (10 cm) long, while the radial spines are up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) long. Flowers are reddish outside, brilliant red inside, and appear in summer. They are funnel-shaped, up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) long, and nearly equal in diameter. Fruits are bright yellow, ovoid, and up to 2 inches (5 cm) long and up to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) in diameter.
USDA hardiness zones 9a to 11b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Choose a location that receives direct sun during all or most of the day. Plant your Barrel Cactus in early spring before new roots begin to form. The roots may appear dry, which is typical before new growth begins. Dig a hole deep enough for the plant's roots and amend it as needed to provide fast-draining soil. A good soil mixture includes 10 percent native soil, 45 percent washed sand or pumice, and 45 percent compost.
Water the cactus at the planting time to anchor it into the soil. Water again only if the weather in your area is unseasonably dry and if normal spring or winter rainfall doesn't occur. Ferocactus need a dormant period with dry soil during the winter.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Ferocactus.
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