genus which includes 50-60 species of cacti, globular or briefly columnar in shape, originating in South America. The stem is generally dark green, characterised by numerous ribs and whitish areoles with white or greyish thorns; most of these plants tend to produce numerous lateral shoots, therefore they often form very numerous groups.
In summer almost all species produce numerous tubular flowers of remarkable dimensions, which reach even the 15-20 cm of length, which bloom at night and touch in a few hours; the flower buds are covered by a characteristic greyish down. The flowers of echinopsis are usually pink, white or red, but there are several hybrids between the species, or with species of lobivia, therefore we can see cacti with yellow, orange or fuchsia flowers. E.
subdenudata is a species without thorns, with pink flowers. E. backebergii has intense red flowers; E. bridgesii has white flowers and produces very numerous shoots, often provided with its own roots.
echinopsis love very sunny locations, even when exposed to direct sunlight, during the summer months they develop without any problems even in the middle of the shade; they fear temperatures below 7-9°C, therefore in winter they are to be protected from the frost, taking them indoors or in cold greenhouses; cold winters favour the summer flowering.
- The echinopsis are among the most beautiful cacti and easy to grow, many are the species, a few dozen, all widespread in nature in the semi-desert areas of Central and South America, you can find them in the…
For a proper development of the plant and an abundant flowering is recommended to leave the soil completely dry from November to March, with the first hot days water moderately; at the arrival of summer water abundantly each time the soil is dry; like other succulent plants, echinopsis prefer drought to plenty of water, but need watering during the period of greatest vegetative development; avoid water stagnation at any time of year, watering the plant only when the soil is dry.
From March to October provide fertilizer for succulent plants, then low in nitrogen, every 10-15 days, mixed with water of watering.
prefer slightly acidic, loose, very well drained soils, mainly made up of sand and lapillus, or other draining material.
in spring it is possible to sow the echinopsis in a mixture of sand and peat in equal parts, the seedbed is to be kept in a humid place, well ventilated and shaded until the complete germination of the seeds. Many species of echinopsis produce several basal or lateral shoots, often provided with their own roots, which may be detached from the mother plant, of which they retain the characteristics, and planted in a single container.
Honeymoon – Echinopsis eryesii: Pests and diseases
Excessive watering can favour the onset of root rot; these plants are often attacked by the floccose cochineal, which frequently lurks in the interstices created between the mother plant and the buds.