Ferocactus viridescens (Coast Barrel Cactus)

Ferocactus viridescens (Coast Barrel Cactus)

Scientific Name

Ferocactus viridescens (Torr. & A. Gray) Britton & Rose

Common Names

Coast Barrel Cactus, San Diego Barrel Cactus, Green-Stem Viznaga, Keg Cactus, Small Barrel Cactus

Synonyms

Echinocactus viridescens (basionym)

Scientific Classification

Family: Cactaceae
Subfamily: Cactoideae
Tribe: Cacteae
Genus: Ferocactus

Description

Ferocactus viridescens is a cactus with a spherical, ovate, or nearly cylindrical stem. It is usually wider than tall and less than 12 inches (30 cm) in height. The stem is bright green, with several ribs covered in arrays of long spines. Spines are red when new dulling to gray or tan. They stick straight out and may curve a bit. Flowers are yellow to greenish with red or pink scales. Fruits are yellow or red.

Photo via snipview.com

Hardiness

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

How to Grow and Care

Choose a location that receives direct sun during all or most of the day. Plant your Barrel Cactus in early spring before new roots begin to form. The roots may appear dry, but that is typical before new growth begins. Dig a hole deep enough for the plant's roots and amend it as needed to provide fast-draining soil. A good soil mixture includes 10 percent native soil, 45 percent washed sand or pumice, and 45 percent compost.

Water the cactus at the time of planting to anchor it into the soil. Water again only if the weather in your area is unseasonably dry and if normal spring or winter rainfall doesn't occur. Ferocactus needs a dormant period with dry soil during the winter.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Ferocactus.

Origin

Native to southern United States (California) and Mexico (northern Baja California).

Links

  • Back to genus Ferocactus
  • Succulentopedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus

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Ferocactus Species, Coast Barrel Cactus, San Diego Barrel Cactus

Family: Cactaceae (kak-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ferocactus (fer-oh-KAK-tus) (Info)
Species: viridescens (veer-ih-DES-kens) (Info)
Synonym:Ferocactus viridescens var. viridescens
Synonym:Echinocactus orcuttii
Synonym:Echinocactus viridescens
Synonym:Ferocactus orcuttii
Synonym:Ferocactus viridescens var. orcuttii

Category:

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Foliage:

Foliage Color:

Height:

Spacing:

Hardiness:

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)

Where to Grow:

Danger:

Plant has spines or sharp edges use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:

Bloom Characteristics:

Bloom Size:

Bloom Time:

Other details:

Soil pH requirements:

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:

From seed direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow unblemished fruit to ripen clean and dry seeds

Unblemished fruit must be significantly overripe before harvesting seed clean and dry seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Regional

This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Gardeners' Notes:

On Apr 19, 2005, Xenomorf from Phoenix, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

The 'viridescens' variety has 13-25 tuberculate ribs and 15-25 spines per areole.
The 'littoralis' variety has 21-34 ribs that aren't tuberculate. It has 21-34 spines per areole. It is indigenous only along the west coast of Baja california down to Mission Santo Domingo.

On Nov 9, 2004, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

Flower is usually yellow or yellowish-greenish and is 1 1/2" in diameter. It can be found in sandy and rocky areas, usually on hillsides near the coast.

On Feb 25, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

local cactus here in So Cal, down to Baja. not a tall one and not particularly colorful, but as younger plant does have some pink in the spines. Color of plant itself is a pale green. Slow growing


Coast Barrel, Keg Cactus, Green-stemmed Viznaga, San Diego Barrel, Sisal

Category:

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Foliage:

Foliage Color:

Height:

Spacing:

Hardiness:

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)

Where to Grow:

Can be grown as an annual

Danger:

Plant has spines or sharp edges use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:

Bloom Characteristics:

Bloom Size:

Bloom Time:

Other details:

Soil pH requirements:

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:

From seed direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow unblemished fruit to ripen clean and dry seeds

Unblemished fruit must be significantly overripe before harvesting seed clean and dry seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Regional

This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Gardeners' Notes:

On Apr 19, 2005, Xenomorf from Phoenix, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

The 'viridescens' variety has 13-25 tuberculate ribs and 15-25 spines per areole.
The 'littoralis' variety has 21-34 ribs that aren't tuberculate. It has 21-34 spines per areole. It is indigenous only along the west coast of Baja california down to Mission Santo Domingo.


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