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Matucana madisoniorum

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Scientific Name

Matucana madisoniorum (Hutchison) G.D. Rowley

Synonyms

Borzicactus madisoniorum, Eomatucana madisoniorum, Loxanthocereus madisoniorum, Submatucana madisoniorum

Scientific Classification

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

Description

Matucana madisoniorum is an attractive small cactus with a blue or grey-green, usually solitary stem that may clump with age. The stem is globose to elongate, up to 6 inches (15 cm) tall, and up to 4 inches (10 cm) in diameter. Some specimens may be almost entirely spineless. Flowers are bright orange-red with a nearly fluorescent sheen, up to 8 inches (10 cm) long and up to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) in diameter. The buds start as little white or grey furry balls. This cactus blooms more than once in several flushes throughout the summer.

Matucana madisoniorum

Photo via flickr.com

Hardiness

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

How to Grow and Care

All species are sensitive to moisture. Watering should, therefore, be limited to the growing season and should be made only when the substrate is completely dry. It must be suspended during the winter. Since they tend to lose their roots in cold and wet, they must be kept warm even in winter. A temperature not under 50 °F (10 °C) is suitable. Some species, for natural adaptation, can resist temperatures below 32°F (0°C).

If the plants are in the vegetative stage and optimal environmental conditions (a low moisture content with substantial temperature swing between day and night is appreciated), the growth is quite fast. You can get blooms already after 2 to 3 years after birth.

Matucana must be grown in very porous and draining soil. It can be composed largely of sand, lapilli, and gravel. To encourage the development of a dense network of the spine, the substrate's quality is very important. The soil must be rich in potassium, poor in nitrogen. Since the roots are very delicate and subject to rot, the soil should be kept as dry as possible. Do not forget that in their natural environment, these plants grow in steep and inaccessible places.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Matucana.

Origin

Native to Peru.

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