Prime destination for succulent lovers

Mammillaria solisioides (Pitayita)


Scientific Name

Mammillaria solisioides Backeb.

Common Names



Mammillaria pectinifera f. solisiodes

Scientific Classification

Family: Cactaceae
Subfamily: Cactoideae
Tribe: Cacteae
Subtribe: Cactinae
Genus: Mammillaria


Mammillaria solisioides is a small cactus, usually solitary, occasionally forming small clumps. The stem is spherical to depressed cylindrical, up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) tall and about the same in diameter. The spines are up to 0.2 inch (5 mm) long, flexible, chalky or dirty white, pectinately arranged and flattened against the stem surface. The flowers are yellow to yellowish-white and up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) long. They are followed by greenish fruits, half-retained within the plant and barely protruding above the spines.

Photo via


USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

To encourage better flowering, allow the plants to enjoy a cooling period in the winter and suspend watering. Unlike many other cacti, which use their ribs as storage devices, Mammillaria feature raised tubercles, from which spines emerge. When you water, the tubercles will expand to allow for increased water storage. The flowers emerge from the axils of these tubercles on the previous year's growth, which accounts for their interesting halo effect. It's imperative that the cactus is not exposed to prolonged dampness and sitting water. Never let your cactus sit in a dish of water. Lastly, make sure to fertilize during the growing season for the best results.

Repot as needed, preferably during the warm season. To repot Mammillaria, make sure the soil is dry before repotting, then gently remove the pot. Knock away the old soil from the roots, making sure to remove any rotted or dead roots in the process. Treat any cuts with a fungicide. Place the plant in its new pot and backfill with potting soil, spreading the roots out as you repot. Leave the plant dry for a week or so, then begin to water lightly to reduce the risk of root rot.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Mammillaria.


Mammillaria solisioides is native to Mexico (Oaxaca and Puebla).


Photo Gallery

Subscribe to Receive News and Updates from World of Succulents: