A photo of a lovely Echinopsis spp cactus flowering in the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne. The only cactus genus that is more confusing than Echinopsis is that of Opuntia. In both cases, there is a great number of species (over 100) and a tremendous amount of variation.
In Echinopsis plants range from very small, flattened-globose plants to quite large, treelike giants. As a result, there is a long list of synonymous names for many of the species. Some synonyms referring to other synonyms that refer to a subspecies of some seemingly distinct species. Sorting through these names often feels like a wild goose chase and is quite frustrating. In more recent thinking, the previous two genera of Trichocereus and Lobivia are included with Echinopsis. However, it is not at all uncommon for enthusiasts to use all three names in discussion even if their labels read Echinopsis!
This usage reflects the general (inexact) situation that the larger, columnar members are distinguished as Trichocereus while Lobivia includes a select group of smaller, not-as-spiny plants which typically flower from low on the plant similar to most Rebutia species. This leaves the bulk of plants referred to as Echinopsis to be mostly spiny, ribbed, globose plants.
The main factor that ties these plants together are their very large, showy flowers. These flowers are all very similar in structure – funnel shaped, with hairy/wooly scaled floral tubes which give rise to hairy, globular fruit filled with a soft, mushy pulp. The flowers seldom last more than a single day and may be diurnal or nocturnal depending on the species. These species hybridise easily and have resulted in a tremendous number of hybrids that some cactus growers specialise in or grow exclusively. There are certainly enough hybrids to keep even ardent hobbyists busy.
Because of their exceptional flowers, many Echinopsis species are found in garden centres and collections world-wide. The larger species (aka Trichocereus) are also popular landscape plants in warmer parts of the world. While there are a number of species common in cultivation, there are as many or more unknown hybrids in the trade. These hybrids are easy-to-grow and produce nice flowers, but buyer beware if exact names are desired. Plants of this genus are widespread throughout South America and inhabit a wide range of habitats and climates.
Join me for Floral Friday Fotos by linking your flower photos below, and please leave a comment once you have done so!
These flowers are absolutely amazing looking! Nice photo too! I love how you always include some background information about the plants :)ReplyDelete
Thanks for hosting!
what a fantastic pic! really love it :)ReplyDelete
most cactus flower are magnificent. This is no exception. Lovely. :)ReplyDelete
Sometimes there's danger to leave behind, to discover beauty inside.ReplyDelete
Thank you for leading me to 'the hunt of flowers'. Please have a good Friday.
I like the flower much better than the prickly needles. Funny how sometimes something of beauty is nestled among the thorns. Hmmm, the same can be true of the human species as well.ReplyDelete
we have ones that bloom around midnight.ReplyDelete
wonderful, i wonder why i haven't seen flowers of these here when there are also many plants in shows.ReplyDelete
It's a beauty.ReplyDelete
Gorgeous shot! And gorgeous flowers too!ReplyDelete
Thanks for sharing. And thanks for having taken the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your new job.
Have a great remainder of the week****
Those are lovely big blossoms!ReplyDelete
What a coincidence! We've posted exactly the same cactus flowers! How cool! :-)ReplyDelete
Cactus flowers can be so awesome!!ReplyDelete
vibrant.. and always interesting!!
I just love this time of year when we can share our flowers with one another. Your Echinopsis is very intriguing. This is the first time I have planted cactus and they are about to bloom. I'm told they will go dormant in the winter and come back next year. Your bloom is beautiful!ReplyDelete
What a lovely cactus! Thanks for hosting! Have a wonderful weekend everyone!ReplyDelete
What a beautiful cactus. Thank you for hosting this garden party.ReplyDelete
Yael from www.HomeGardenDiggers.com
Those cactus flowers are beautiful.ReplyDelete
Amazing photo! I love cactus flowers and the wonderful contrast between the brutal sharp thorns and the delicate blooms. Just beautiful! Thank you for hosting. Have a terrific weekend! :-)ReplyDelete
Who knew it was so confusing! I love the cactus flowers, but don't like dealing with the thorny part! Just beautiful shot, and as always, thanks for the educational comments!ReplyDelete
Very beautiful flower.ReplyDelete
The flowers are beautiful and so is the photo.ReplyDelete
I appreciate the information (and the hard work to put it up) that go with your posts.