Gymnocalycium baldianum (Speg.) Speg.
Dwarf Chin Cactus, Dwarf Chin
Echinocactus baldianus (basionym), Echinocactus sanguiniflorus, Gymnocalycium venturianum, Gymnocalycium platense var. baldianum, Gymnocalycium sanguiniflorum
Gymnocalycium baldianum is a small cactus with solitary, usually unbranched, spherical or a little flat stem, up to 5 inches (12.5 cm) in diameter, with 9 to 10 broad ribs and 5 to 7 bristle-like radial spines. Flowers are funnel-shaped, purple-red, sometimes pinkish-purple, but also white, pink or orange, up to 1.6 inches (4 cm) in diameter and appear in early summer.
USDA hardiness zones 8b to 11b: from 15 °F (−9.4 °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.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Gymnocalycium.
Gymnocalycium baldianum is native to Argentina (Catamarca Province).
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