15 Most Beautiful Flowering Cactus Plants

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The cactus family is one of several families that have large, leafless, long-living, fleshy stems of different shapes and sizes, on which clusters of spines are borne.

A succulent plant (not all succulents are cacti) has the ability to store water to survive in arid conditions.

To be classified as a cactus, the plant must produce a specific type of flower, which includes the following:

Cactus Flowering Parts
Source: Arizona-edu
  • Interwoven tepals (petals and sepals).
  • Hundreds of stamens (male flower parts).
  • Lobes on the stigma (female flower part).

If a plant does not have such a flower, it cannot be classified as a cactus.

Furthermore, the presence of areoles, which are small bumps along the stem where the spines grow, distinguishes cacti from other succulents.

This section will look at some of the cactus species that produce the most beautiful cactus flowers.

Beautiful Flowering Cactus Plants

Spiny Pincushion Cactus

Mammillaria spinosissima

Latin: Mammillaria spinosissima

Characteristics:

A solitary plants.

There are 50 cm (20 in) long cylindrical dark blue-green stems 6-7 cm (2.4-2.8 in) wide.

The central spines are longer and thicker than the radials, with a darker pink color that can vary.

White to dirty white to yellow to deep reddish-brown; 4-6 mm (0.2 in) in length are the radial spines.

The flowers are about 15 mm (0.6 in) long and about 0.6 in (1.5 cm) wide.

Regions: Morelos, Guerrero, and Mexico make up the majority of the population.

Spider Cactus

Gymnocalycium oehnanthemum

Latin: Gymnocalycium oenanthemum

Characteristics:

Flattened, round, dull gray-green to blue-green plants grow individually to 8 centimeters in height and 12 centimeters in diameter.

With a sharp angle on the ribs from 11-13, there is no central spine. Its radial spines are 5 to 6, reddish-gray with dark tips, and measure up to 1.5 cm (0.6 in) long.

To 5 cm (2 in) long and 4 cm (1.6 in) in diameter, wine red or pinkish-red, shiny flowers.

The Fruits are green.

Regions: In Argentina, the plant is distributed in Catamarca and La Rioja.

Mammillaria Cactus

Mammillaria guelzowiana

Latin: Mammillaria guelzowiana

Characteristics:

Clusters of plants, initially solitary, later forming, with the apical portion of the plant depressed.

4 to 10 cm (1.6 to 3.9 inches) in diameter, globose stems can reach heights of up to 7 cm (2.8 inches). 

One of the central spines is hooked, and the others are slender, needle-like, and reddish-brown to yellowish.

The flowers are bright, intense purplish-red to 4 cm (1.6 in) long and 7 cm (2.8 in) in diameter.

The Plants have pale red or yellowish-white to 8 mm (0.3 in) long fruits.

The seeds are black.

Regions: Durango and Mexico are the distribution regions.

Hedgehog Cactus

Echinopsis spachiana

Latin: Echinopsis spachiana

Characteristics:

Several erect stems up to 2 m (6.6 ft) in height, shrubby, branching at the base. Five to six centimeters (2 to 2 inches) wide, the stems are cylindrical.

Curly yellow wool fills the areoles, which are spaced about 1 cm (0.4 in) apart.

Reddish yellow spines turn whitish as they age. Central Spine length ranges from 0.4-0.8 in (1-2 cm). Radial spines between 0.4 and 1 centimeters long.

Floral tubes are hairy, and the flowers are white, 18-20 cm (7.1-7.9 in) long, and up to 15 cm (5.9 in) wide.

Regions: In western Argentina, it is found.

Rosy Pincushion Cactus

Mammillaria zeilmanniana

Latin: Mammillaria zeilmanniana

Characteristics:

These are cluster and solitary plants. The stems are globose, dark green, 1-8 cm (0.4-3.1 in) high and wide.

The flowers are funnel-shaped. Colors range from yellowish-white to white to very pale to pale magenta, rarely magenta, and the flowers are 10-20 mm (0.4-0.8 in) in length and diameter.

The seeds are a dark brownish-black color, with large pits on the surface.

Regions: There is a wide distribution in San Luis Potosi and the surrounding areas of Zacatecas and Guanajuato. 

Sulcorebutia Cactus

Sulcorebutia Albissima

Latin: Sulcorebutia Albissima

Characteristics:

Plants that spontaneously group. Flattened globose to globose stems, fresh green, up to a diameter of 6 centimeters (2.4 inches). 

There are reddish-brown to black on the spines.

2-5,5-8 mm (0.2-0.3 in) long central spines. Radial spines 10-18, pectinate, and up to 5 mm long.

Blooms are purple and up to 1.2 in (3 cm) long and 3.5 in (1.4 cm) wide.

There are round, brown fruits measuring 7-10 millimeters in diameter (0.3-0.4 inches).

Regions: Bolivian province of Campero, Cochabamba.

Balloon Cactus

Notocactus Magnificus

Latin: Notocactus Magnificus

Characteristics:

Solitary to occasionally clustered plants are the norm. At their widest point, Obliquely-curved apical stems are 7-15 cm (2.9-5.9 in) in diameter. Straight, acute ribs from 11 to 15.

After initially white, the areoles turn yellowish up to 20 mm (0.8 in) long yellow bristle-like spines.

Sufficiently dense white wool and brownish bristles cover the pericarps of flowers between 4 and 5 centimeters (1.8 to 2.2 inches) long and wide.

In diameter, the fruits are globose, pink, and up to 1 cm (0.4 in).

There are Spiny tuberculate, oblong to club-shaped, reddish-brown seeds.

Regions: the Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.

Ariocarpus Cactus

Ariocarpus
Source : Wikipedia

Latin: Ariocarpus fissuratus

Characteristics:

They are a wide range of gray-green to yellow-brown plants, ranging in diameter from 5 to 15 centimeters (2 to 5.9 inches).

There are 1-2 cm long and 1.5-2.5 cm wide tubercles that are laterally divergent, dense, flattened, or slightly convex above.

The areoles’ central woolly furrows span the length of the tubercle.

2.5-4.5 cm (1-1.8 in) in diameter, magenta flowers.

Fruits are hidden in the middle of the wool, making them difficult to find.

Regions: In Texas, they can be found from the Pecos River south to Coahuila, Chihuahua, and Durango, Mexico’s Big Bend region.

Bishop’s Hat Cactus

Astrophytum myriostigma

Latin: Astrophytum myriostigma

Characteristics:

Ten to 25 centimeters (3.9 to 9.8 inches) tall, 10 to 18 centimeters (3.9 to 7.1 inches) wide, they appear whitish due to dense tufts of white trichomes.

Triangular-shaped ribs are the most common. 10-20 mm (0.4-0.8 in) diameter areoles are spaced 10-20 mm apart (0.4-0.8 in).

Spines are not found.

6-7 cm (2.4-2.8 in) long yellow flowers with red throats. Star-shaped decomposition of fruits.

Region: The Chihuahuan Desert is the primary habitat for this species.

Monk’s Hood Cactus

Astrophytum ornatum

Latin: Astrophytum ornatum

Characteristics:

Scattered white or yellow trichomes on dark green globose to cylindrical plants with a diameter of 15–30 cm (5.9–12 in).

There are eight ribs, which can be spiraling or acutely angled. The spines are thick, yellow, and eventually turn brown or gray—located in the middle of the spine.

Spines 5–10 of the radial crest, flattened.

7-8 cm (2.8-3.1 in) long yellow flowers. Star-shaped dehiscence of fruits from the base to the middle.

Regions: Queretaro and Hidalgo, in central Mexico, respectively.

Aylostera Cactus

Rebutia narvaecensis

Latin: Rebutia narvaecensis

Characteristics:

Clusters of plants. 3 to 3.5 cm (1.2 to 1.4 in) tall and 2.5 to 3.5 cm (1 to 1.4 in) in diameter, the stems are gray-green and slightly depressed apically. 

Areoles are round, prominent, and white.

This plant has flowers that grow on the side of the stems, and they are usually pale rose pink in color and about 1.6-1.7 inches long and in diameter.

Regions: Tarija, Bolivia, is where the plant is distributed.

Aylostera narvaecensis Cactus

Rebutia Heliosa

Latin: Rebutia Heliosa

Characteristics:

Clustering is a common occurrence in plants. The stems are globose, gray-green, up to 2 cm (0.8 in) high, and 2.5 cm (1 in) in diameter.

Tubercles are formed by a spiraling arrangement of up to 38 ribs. Areoles are brown and elongated.

4.5-5.5 cm (1.8-2.2 in) long, to 4 cm (1.6 in) in diameter, orange to yellowish orange to purple flowers are found on the lower half of the stem.

Squishy, round fruits.

Regions: Tarija, Bolivia, is where the plant is distributed.

Old Lady Cactus

Mammillaria hahniana

Latin: Mammillaria hahniana

Characteristics:

Plants tend to form clumps in nature, to 9 cm (3.5 in) high and 10 cm (3.9 in) in diameter, the stems are globose and light green. To a maximum of 4 mm in length, the central spines are white with reddish tips.

12-15 mm (0.5-0.6 in) in diameter purple-pink flowers. 5-7 mm (0.2-0.3 in) long, red, club-shaped fruits Brown seeds.

Regions: Three Mexican states distribution areas: Guanajuato, Tamaulipas, and Querétaro.

Easter Cactus

Hatiora gaertneri

Latin: Hatiora gaertneri

Characteristics:

Plants that are typically densely branched, pendent shrubs. Stem segments are usually flattened, but they can also be three- to six-angled.

Flowers 1-3, borne apically on terminal stem segments, funnelform, dark scarlet, 4-5 cm (1.6-2 in) long, 4-7.5 cm (1.6-3 in) in diameter.

Fruits are red and oblong.

Regions: Brazil, at elevations ranging from 350 to 1300 meters (1100-4300 ft).

Biznaga de Lau

Mammillaria laui dasyacantha

Latin: Mammillaria laui dasyacantha

Characteristics:

Clusters of plants. 

With a diameter of 4.5 cm (1.8 in) and a height of 6 cm (2.4 in), these spine-covered stems can grow to be as long as they want, but they can also be as short as 4.5 cm (1.8 in).

There are cylindrical tubercles, axils bare or covered in sparse wool. It is unknown whether the central spines of this animal are present or not. It has up to 60 radial spines, white hair-like, radial spines up to 9 millimeters long (0.2-0.4 inches).

Colorful, 15 mm long, and 12 mm diameter carmine flowers.

White or pale pink fruits up to 10 mm (0.4 in) in length, ranging in shape from cylinder to club.

Regions: Tamaulipas, Mexico, is the primary region of distribution.

Edwin Siregar
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