Gymnocalycium anisitsii (K.Schum.) Britton & Rose
Echinocactus anisitsii (basionym), Echinocactus joossensianus, Gymnocalycium griseopallidum
Gymnocalycium anisitsii is a small, globular cactus up to 6 inches (15 cm) diameter and up to 4 inches (10 cm) tall. It can be solitary or slowly clustering. Sometimes a central spine is present, but it is usually absent. The spines are yellowish to brownish, slender, twisted and up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) long. The flowers are white to pink, funnel-shaped and up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) long. The red fruits are long and cylindrical, up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) long and up to 0.4 inch (1 cm) in diameter.
USDA hardiness zone 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Some Gymnocalyciums are shade-seeking in the wild, among shrubs or grasses, while others grow completely exposed. Some will therefore need a light shading from the sun in the hottest months, but to overdo this will result in loss of flowers. The balance of the potting medium should be sufficient to allow good drainage, so that the plants do not sit in soggy soil for more than a day or two after watering. Watering in the summer months, while the plants are growing well can be frequent (weekly for small plants in small pots), but always allowing the compost nearly to dry out before rewatering. Watering in the winter months at all is unwise, and certainly not necessary. The difficult times are spring and autumn.
Those species which produce offsets can be readily propagated by cuttings. Gymnocalycium seed germinates well when fresh, and will keep for a few years if stored in cold conditions.
As much as any other cacti, Gymnocalyciums suffer from the persistent pest, mealybug, in both its forms… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Gymnocalycium
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