Echinocactus grow in the southern states of the United States and Mexico. The genus includes quite a few species, of which the most popular is echinocactus is a load.
“Hedgehog cacti”, as they are called, are capable of reaching 3 meters in height and 1.5 meters in girth, while some of them can weigh more than a ton and belong to the category of long-livers with an age exceeding 500 years!
Echinocactus species photos and titles
Echinocactus Trucks it lives in Mexico, where its dimensions substantially exceed the spiky balls 40–45 cm in diameter that are usual for home furnishings. The spines are either straight or slightly curved, have rather high strength, oblong.
Just in connection with the last property, the whole family as a whole began to be called “hedgehog cacti” and, by the way, this is not their only unofficial name. The fact is that after 13-14 years of development, this species changes form from spherical to barrel-shaped with dimensions up to 1.2-1.5 meters in height and up to 0.9-1 meters in width, thus from the “hedgehog cactus” turning into a “golden barrel”.
The color of the spines includes pale yellows and, rarely, whites, which should be noted before purchasing this cactus, as the store echinocactus is heavy, containing various supplements, such as “red" or "Rainbow” (echinocactus red and Rainbow Echinocactus respectively), in fact, is not a separate grade, as you might think at first, but just painted in a different color with the usual food dye, and maybe, much worse, the dye from the printer.
It is better to avoid such “colored hedgehogs”, since, even with age, they will cleanse themselves of foreign matter (returning the spines a natural yellowish tint), but as long as this happens, the owner may face serious problems during the cultivation, which should not be basically.
Slightly less popular, it is slightly higher - 1.5-2 meters - and wider - 1-1.5 meters, it has much fewer ribs - no more than 20-25. Grayish spines in shape straight. For its taste, the species almost fell into the list of endangered in Mexico, where it became an integral component of culinary sweets.
Echinocactus parry - the same spherical at the beginning of growth, then acquires a cylindrical shape. This handsome man from the north of Mexico has a relatively small height - 30-35 cm and curved brown-pink spines, which eventually turn white. This species has very high care requirements associated with poor seed germination and susceptibility to various diseases at a young age.
Echinocactus horizontal somewhat differs from the “brothers” in its shape, and specifically in the flattened spherical outlines with twisted ribs in the amount of 11–12 pieces. Even adult representatives of the species are characterized by a relatively small diameter of 25–30 cm and slightly thickened curved spines of a rich red color.
Unlike other types of echinocactus horizontal flowering, it is easy to achieve horizontal at home (its beautiful flowers are up to 3 cm long and purple-red in color), observing the elementary rules of care.
Wide-echinocactus notable for the myriad spines up to 3 cm long, brown in color. At the same time, the dimensions of the age specimen are 150x125 cm in height and diameter. During the flowering period, yellow funnel-shaped flowers appear.
Multihead echinocactus It really has multi-colored needles - yellow, brown-red or pink. When forcing the apartment can grow to 70 cm in height with 15-20 ribs and a small number of thorns.
Echinocactus polycephalus similar in size and number of ribs to the previous view. At the same time, its spherical shape with bristling spines to the greatest degree among all echinocactus claims to be compared with a real hedgehog. Prefers to be part of a large group, which can include up to 100 plants!
Watering often can not, you need to wait for almost complete drying of the soil in the pot. For irrigation it is better to use well-settled water at room temperature.
There are no requirements for air humidity - in an ordinary city apartment without spraying and other additional irrigation measures it feels great. If the stem is very dirty, it is washed under a warm shower and cleaned with a toothbrush or small paint brush.
Soil for echinocactus
Substrate Echinocactus trumps need to pick loose, breathable, neutral-sour. Suitable store soil for cacti, but with the addition of fine gravel or crushed bricks.
The personal preparation of the soil mixture implies the use of coarse-grained sand with fine gravel (brick dust) as components of leafy and sod lands in proportion to 1: 2: 1: 0.5. Additionally, it is better to provide a small amount of crushed charcoal to prevent rotting of the roots.
The capacity for disembarking a hedgehog cactus should correspond to its surface root system, which is not particularly widespread - a broad, shallow bowl will do.
Transplantation, if done, in rare cases, if necessary. There are enough reasons for such caution: the first is the sensitivity of the root system to mechanical stress, the second is the long and sharp spines from which even thick gloves will not protect.
The skilled flower growers, however, have come up with an interesting trick that helps to avoid injuries from cactus during transplantation — they push a wire loop between the needles, which simultaneously performs the role of a grab and a safe handle, pulling the plant out of the substrate and moving it to a new container.
Echinocactus should be fed once a month during the growing season with fertilizers for cacti and succulents.
Echinocactus bloom flowering
Not often it comes to flowering of Echinocactus geuzhni, because only instances of more than 20 years old with a stem that has expanded by 40 cm can bloom. But when this happens, its top is decorated with pretty yellow flowers, each with a diameter of about 5 cm. and length - up to 7.
Like most cacti, the shape of the flowers is tubular and has felted pubescence. The corolla is composed of a variety of lanceolate petals with oblong tips of a yellow-brown color.
Echinocactus rest period
From October until February, the cactus should rest. During this period, it should be moved to a cool room (temperature about 12). It is not recommended to create colder conditions, as the freezing of the plant is not excluded, as a result of which it may become covered with brownish inclusions.
It also does not hurt to use the cactus tank stand to keep its roots from cold. As noted above, the soil should dry out before each watering, so in winter conditions, when the risk of root rot increases significantly, you can completely eliminate any moisture.
Echinocactus seed reproduction
Multiply home echinocactus can be seed and other ways. Seed germination is almost 100 percent, so for this purpose it is recommended to use them.
The procedure consists of the following steps:
- Seeds are soaked in warm water for several hours.
- Sow them without digging into the sand in the middle or late spring.
- Cover with foil and placed in a lighted room.
- Periodically, the seedlings are aired, no watering is done, but they are sprayed with a light solution of potassium permanganate to prevent the occurrence of putrid mold.
- After the emergence of seedlings (after 10-30 days), the sprouts swoop in separate pots. During the first year, this must be done several times - even after the appearance of the first thorns and upon reaching the seedlings with a diameter of 4-5 cm, the last time the substrate is changed to the mixture for adult cacti described above.
Diseases and pests
The greatest harm to Echinocactus is scythe, pincers and worms.
The first can be seen when small plaques appear on it, the second by their activity contribute to the formation of brown dead spots, the third are identified by a characteristic whitish bloom.
With all these symptoms, the plant is carefully washed in warm water, preventing moisture from reaching the surface of the soil. If this is not enough to completely get rid of parasites, apply insecticides.
Soil and transplant
Echonocactus prefers a nutrient rich substrate with little compost added. It is necessary to replant in winter or early spring in order to provide a fresh substrate and a sufficient amount of mineral substances. If the roots are heavily matted, do not fit in the container, use a pot one size larger. At the bottom put a layer of drainage, prevent rotting of the roots. Young copies are transplanted every year, old once in several years. When transplanting especially large and heavy cacti, you can wrap the echinocactus with a blanket so as not to sway with numerous thorns. You can feed in the summer, fertilizer rich in potassium, every two to three weeks.
Prefers a burning sun. In summer, echonocactus can be exposed to fresh air. At home, grown on a windowsill on the south side. Indirectly, this is indicated by numerous, deep ribs and thorns - thus, echinocactus scatters sunlight that falls on it, a certain part of the stem is always lit.
Echinocactus requires a lot of moisture, watering often and regularly when the substrate in the pot dries. Do not allow water to stand in the stand. When watering, do not wet the stem of the plant so that the cactus does not get burned in the bright sun. Drying drops of water form stains on the surface, which are difficult to get rid of.
In winter, water so that the soil does not completely dry. The optimum wintering temperature is 10-12 ° C.
In addition to species with typical golden yellow spines, several varieties of Echinocactus were distinguished, which differ in the appearance of spines:
- Echinocactus grusonii "Albispinus" - snow-white spikes,
- Echinocactus grusonii "Brevispinus" - extremely short spikes,
- Echinocactus grusonii "Intermedius" - thorns shorter than typical species, but longer than that of "Brevispinus"
- Echinocactus grusonii "Setispinus" - thin, white and yellow thorns,
- Echinocactus grusonii "Krauskopf" - white-gold, flat and twisted spikes.
The Echinocactus Rainbow Mix, the primary colors of the colored rainbow (Rainbow) cacti, red, yellow, and pink, are becoming increasingly popular.
Since the areoles are located at some distance from each other, in young cacti the ribs seem to be divided into nipples.
Older specimens of echinocactus Gruzonis occurring in nature are tilted to the south, perpendicular to the incident rays. In a tilted state, it is better to tolerate direct sunlight. Because of this, travelers are regarded as compasses! Unfortunately, in their natural environment are less common, due to excessive collection of mature plants.
What does Gruzoni echinocactus look like
Echinocactus Gruzoni (Echinocactus grusonii) has the shape of an almost regular ball. He is very popular with flower growers. The plant, as it is easy to guess, belongs to the extensive family Cactus (Cactaceae). Distributed in North and Central America, mainly in Mexico and the southern states of the United States, preferring arid lowland climate.
In nature, Gruzony echinocactus successfully survives in a hot arid climate.
The genus Echinocactus, combining the six most common globular cacti in the area, was named because of its characteristic shape and the presence of long, sharp spikes of a pale golden or amber color, beautifully contrasting with a general dark green background. Translated from the Greek "echinus" - sea urchin. The plant really looks like a coiled bristling hedgehog. As they grow older (13–15 years old), the “ball” is slightly pulled vertically. Because of this, the plant has earned the nickname "Golden Barrel". There are also other names of national origin - “mother-in-law chair (or pillow)”, “bedside table”, “golden ball”.
The specific type was named in honor of Hermann Augustus Gruzon, a rationalizer, inventor and major entrepreneur who lived in Germany in the 19th century. In addition to the main activity, he was also interested in botany and collected one of the largest cacti collections in Europe for his time. Then it was given to them as a gift to its hometown, Magdeburg, along with greenhouses specially designed for their cultivation.
Hermann Augustus Gruzon is a successful German industrialist and inventor, as well as an avid cacti lover.
When the first of Euhinocactus Gruzoni in 1891 was discovered by the German researcher Heinrich Hildmann, he remembered a fellow “fan” and immortalized his name.
In nature, these are real giants. The diameter of the stem on average reaches 1.5-2 m. But there are also real “champions” - 3 m and more. At home, everything is much more modest. Most specimens do not exceed 40–50 cm in diameter.
At home, an adult Gruzoni's Echinocactus rarely exceeds the diameter of a watermelon, but in nature it is much larger
Echinocactus Gruzoni densely covered with sharp spines, straight or slightly curved. Growing closer to the center, they reach 4–5 cm in length, those that are located at the periphery — 2–3 cm. At the top, the spines cross. Thick "bristles" in the same fit into the norm.
The spines of Echinocactus Gruzoni effectively stand out against the general dark green background
The correct round shape is “supported” by a variety of edges. On average, their number is 35–45 pieces. Echinocactus Gruzoni does not form side shoots and "babies". It is always a large solitary plant.
It blooms at home very rarely. Even in nature, buds form only mature specimens that have reached the age of 20 years or older. Flowering in the spring. Single buds alternately bloom at the top of the plant. The flowers look like pale yellow or yellowish-brown bells, 5–6 cm in diameter. Then the oblong fruits, covered with a short whitish "pile", ripen.
The flowering of echinocactus Gruzoni at home - a truly exclusive sight
Like all cacti, it is a real long-liver. One hundred years for him (provided competent care) is far from the limit. Known plants, whose age is estimated at 500-600 years. During this time, Gruzonie echinocactus reaches a substantial mass (several tons). Therefore, when a plant abruptly begins to absorb moisture during the rainy season, it often turns over under the weight of its own above-ground part, lying on its side. But it, most likely, will not perish, having formed new roots.
Echinocactus Gruzoni - natural "conductor". In his needles are constantly weak electrical discharges. Some scientists believe that in this way the plant “pumps” water from the roots to the crown.
In natural conditions, echino-coctus Gruzoni, like a sunflower, reaches for the sun, tilting slightly in search of heat. Accordingly, the opposite side shrivels, as if “deflated”. The difference is quite noticeable. If you do not want to create an authentic Mexican landscape in your apartment, turn the pot regularly, keeping the direction (clockwise or against it).
Home grown species
All Gruzoni echinocactus are quite large plants. Therefore, the possibility of growing them at home is often limited by the area of the florist’s apartment. If there is no such problem, you can safely purchase any breeding hybrid that you can find, or the “classic” version.
Often on sale can be found Gruzoni echinocactus with neon-pink, scarlet, bright yellow, lilac spines. This is not the latest achievement of breeders, but the result of using a solution of ordinary food coloring instead of water for irrigation. If the buyer stops this practice, the tint of the thorns will quickly return to normal.
Multicolored echinocactus Gruzoni - not a new breeding variety, but a simple trick of producers of indoor plants
Most often at home are found:
- Echinocactus Gruzoni Texas (Texensis). The plant is in the shape of a ball about 30 cm in diameter, slightly flattened laterally. Height - no more than 15–20 cm. Reber is relatively small - 15–25. Now, from a scientific point of view, this plant does not belong to echinocactus. According to the latest changes in taxonomy, it is attributed to the genus Khomalotsefal. Even against the rest of the "relatives" stands out unpretentiousness.
- Echinocactus Gruzoni Belokolyuchkovy (albispinus). Selection hybrid. Sometimes it is considered a mutation that spontaneously appeared in nurseries. It differs from the “parent” by the presence of snow-white spines. If the plant is long standing in direct sunlight, they gradually change the shade to sand or bronze, acquiring a kind of "tan". At the same time, new spines grow white - a very interesting contrast is created.
- Echinocactus Gruzoni seta (setispinus). Отличается наличием очень тонких, длинных (до 7 см) шипов, больше напоминающих волоски. По мере взросления растения они ещё удлиняются. Взрослое растение как будто окутано паутиной.
- Эхинокактус Грузони бесколючковый (subinermis). He still has spikes, but very short ones, no longer than 1 cm long. There are no other differences from the “classical” variant.
- Echinocactus Gruzoni comb (cristatus). At home is rare. Differs in the presence of curved yellow-white spines of interesting shape.
- Gruine Echinocactus rare (monstruosus). The spines are very short. On top there is a yellow-white pubescence.
- Echinocactus Gruzoni variegatus (variegatus). On the general dark green background of the stem yellow and / or lime spots stand out spectacularly.
How to create a plant optimal conditions
The correct microclimate is the key to a long life of Gruzoni echinocactus. Its natural habitat is radically different from the conditions of modern apartments. Nevertheless, the plant has surprisingly successfully adapted to its unusual environment, so nothing supernatural from the grower is required.
The rainbow echinocactus of the Cactus family in its natural environment grows up to 1 m in height and up to 1 m in width. The homeland of growth is the desert terrain of Mexico and the South-West of the United States of America. This popular plant attracts with its slow growth rate and high decorative qualities, it should be planted in indoor conditions not only because of the flowers, but because of its interesting spherical shape with many pink spines.
“The hedgehog cactus” - this is also what the locals call Gruzoni - in nature grows up to 200-500 years. As it grows, its spherical shape is converted to barrel-shaped. But the changes concern not only the form: at the age of 3-4 years, sharp tubercles with dense sharp needles form from small tubercles. At first, a “down” appears on the growing upper part - young spines, not yet coarsened.
This type of cactus grows in the form of a spherical stem with sharp edges that are in an upright position. They number from 35 to 45. The glossy surface of the stem attracts the attention with a pronounced green color.
The original spines are formed from areoles, which are located on the edges of the hedgehog cactus. In each of them, radial needles (10 pieces) and central (1-4 pieces) are formed. In length, they do not exceed 3-5 cm, with less radial from the central. Decorative Gruzoni lies in the presence of a kind of "cap", consisting of young needles, formed on top. Spines can be painted white or yellow - natural color. If Gruzoni's echinocactus with spines of red, green, bright yellow color are found on the market, the cultivation takes place with the use of dyes. Such a marketing move subsequently adversely affects the state of the plant itself: it starts to hurt and in most cases dies.
In room conditions, exotic culture in height and diameter rarely exceeds 40 cm. It is possible to observe flowering only when the plant reaches 20 years. The blooming phase of beautiful flowers takes place in May-June. The first is a bud on a long leg, and from it a yellow flower. The funnel-shaped tube is outside covered with a fluff, thin petals have a glossy surface. Along the edges they have a brown edging. The length of the corolla at the flower is 7 cm, diameter - 5 cm.
How to care for cactus at home
When buying a succulent, it is very important to know that Gruzoni's echinocactus of red does not exist, the tinted spines, as they grow, change this color to natural — amber-honey, and the top acquires a white color. In order for the plant to grow and develop normally, it is necessary to follow the simple rules of agrotechnology.
The recommended room temperature for succulent is in the range of 20-25 degrees in the spring and summer season. With improper care at home, Gruzonie echinocactus can overheat, if the temperature readings are too curtailed, fade, its growth can slow down.
With the arrival of autumn, the temperature regime should be gradually reduced to 10-15 degrees.
The organization of watering is one of the components of proper care for Gruzoni at home. Moisturize the soil substrate is in moderate quantities, dampness and excess moisture is unacceptable, otherwise the likelihood of rotting of the root system. Water is used at room temperature, separated. The frequency of watering in the spring and summer is 1 every 10-12 days. On hot days, echinocactus needs sprays that not only allow you to clear the flower of dust particles, but also to refresh it.
In the autumn, the procedure reduces moisture. It is important that between watering the soil is almost completely dry out. Well do it through the pallet. Excess water from it should then be removed. In winter, when the plant begins a period of rest, irrigation and feeding stop.
If you provide a comfortable home environment, then it is simple and easy to look after Gruzoni Echinocactus. Throughout the year, the plant needs a lot of light, and the direct rays of the sun have a beneficial effect on it. On this basis, to install the pot, it is better to choose a window sill of a south orientation. If the flower suffers from a lack of light, then the color of the flower will begin to fade, the spines will fall off, and the flower itself will stretch out.
In the summer season, the plant gratefully responds to the "walk" in the fresh air. In spring, echinocactus is recommended to be placed in a sunny place, but it will take time, for successful adaptation it is better to do it gradually, otherwise bright light will cause burns on the ribs of the succulent.
The soil substrate for Gruzony requires a poor one, it should not be fertile, the main thing is sufficient friability, air and water permeability, the level of acidity is neutral-acid. A great option is a commercial mix for cacti, but it is necessary to add fine gravel or crushed brick to it.
It is possible to prepare a soil substrate at home from leafy soil, sod, coarse sand, fine gravel in a ratio of 1: 2: 1: 0.5. To prevent the development of root rot, it is good to include crushed charcoal in the soil composition for cacti.
A pot for Gruson's landing will fit a wide and shallow one, since its root system is predominantly superficial.
Feeding procedures for this succulent begin after winter and end at the end of summer. Mainly used fertilizer mixtures for cacti in liquid form, which include chelates. Make a top dressing with a high concentration of nitrogen should be at the beginning of the spring period.
To induce flowering, potash-phosphate fertilizers of the type Gileya for cacti and succulents are needed. To saturate the root mass of the plant with beneficial trace elements, mixtures with a high magnesium content are necessary. Adding solutions based on organics is strictly prohibited. In the autumn, care is only in rare watering and maintaining the optimum air temperature in the room.
Pot and transplanting
Echinocactus red, like the other varieties of Gruzoni when grown at home, should be transplanted into a new container of large size as the stem grows. It is necessary to carry out the transshipment of a young succulent 1 time in 2 years, and an adult - 1 time in 3-4 years.
The action algorithm is reduced to the following scheme:
- Gently prying, remove the flower together with the earthy clod. The work should be done in protective gloves, so as not to damage the skin with sharp prickles.
- Leave the plant open for 2-3 days. This technique allows the damaged roots to dry, so as not to begin the process of rotting.
- A drainage layer of fine gravel (3-4 cm) is placed on the bottom of a plastic or ceramic container, the size of which is 1-1.5 cm larger than the previous container, then the echinocactus is placed in the center and the voids are filled with soil previously steamed in the oven.
- Watered through the pan after 4 days.
Transplant after purchase is carried out in 2-4 weeks, this time is necessary for the adaptation of the plant so that it gets used to the new climate.
When the room content of Echinocactus Gruzonii bred seed method, and the result is guaranteed, and the children.
- Soak the planting material in a container with heated water for 2 hours.
- Produce the laying of seeds in the sand, but shallow.
- Cover the container or other container with a plastic bag to create the greenhouse effect and place it in a well-lit place.
- Watering the seedlings is not necessary, it is enough to spray a low-concentration solution of potassium permanganate to eliminate the appearance of rot with this method of reproduction of tropical plants.
- Regularly air landing.
- After 10-30 days, the sprout is picked on separate containers.
Succulen processes are used for this method, but they are rarely used. To get a new exotic plant, you need:
- Trim kids who already have roots.
- Cut the powder with powdered charcoal for disinfection.
- Dry the process in the penumbra for 2 days.
- Place the prepared sprout in a jar with drained soil.
- Moisten the soil after 3 days.
Rooting of a new plant occurs after 2-3 weeks.
This procedure is not difficult. Bruise echinocactus can multiply in a vegetative way (by children), and by seeds.
Shoots, shoots, or "kids" in this type of cactus appear very rarely. The stem begins to branch (release children) in case of mechanical damage to the apex, or when the plant is on the verge of death.
When breeding children, it is important to carefully separate the process from the parent stem. Rooting of the separated process in the prepared substrate, as a rule, occurs quickly.
Seeds are used much more often for reproduction of echinocactus. The best time for this is the middle of spring. Seeds are soaked for several hours in warm water.
Immediately before planting, they are placed for ten minutes in a weak solution of potassium permanganate to avoid putrid mold, then sown in the prepared soil without deepening, sprinkled on top with a thin (1-2 mm) layer of soil.
Shoots appear in 10-30 days.
Echinocactus Gruzoni unpretentious, but improper care for him can cause a deterioration in the appearance of the plant, and even lead to his death.
For watering cactus water is used, settled for 3-4 days at room temperature. During the period of active growing season (spring-summer), the plant is watered infrequently, waiting for the soil to dry out completely in the pot. From mid-autumn, watering is reduced, and in winter, as a rule, they do without watering.
As fertilizer of Echinocactus Gruzoni use special fertilizers for cacti, any other fertilizers can do more harm than good. For example, cactus is absolutely contraindicated in any organic matter. Top dressing is made once a month and only in the spring and summer period, starting from the middle of spring and ending at the beginning of autumn.
As they grow, the plant is transplanted into larger pots. The size of a pot is defined as the diameter of a cactus plus one to two centimeters. Transplantation of a cactus is associated with certain difficulties due to the numerous needles.
The plant extracted from the pot should be examined and, if necessary, removed the rotten or dried roots. Cactus can be watered no earlier than 2-3 days after transplantation.
This plant should be kept all year round in a well-lit place, while it will be very good if during the day the direct rays of the sun fall on it. In this regard, for such a cactus is better to choose a window of the southern orientation. In the summer, it is best to take it outside, and you need to choose an open and well-lit place.
If there is little light, some of the spines will fall off, and the young ones appearing in their place will be pale and thin.
Cactus does not like heat. In the case when the summer temperature is set in excess of 30 degrees, the plant either begins to grow more slowly, or its growth stops altogether. In this case, he begins a period of peace, but this is better not to allow.
In winter, from October to February, the cactus must rest. During this period, it should be placed in a room in which the temperature will be approximately equal to 12 degrees. If the room is a few degrees cooler, then echinocactus, as a rule, freezes over, with brownish spots appearing on its surface. As a result, he loses his spectacular appearance or dies.
How to water
Watering should be rare. So, between watering the substrate in the pot should be completely dry. Water the cactus well-settled water, which must be at room temperature.
In the event that the soil in the pot will be wet for a long time (especially during cold wintering), then rot may form on the root system.
In winter, during the rest period, the plant can not be watered at all.
The low air humidity of urban apartments is great for growing echinocactus. At the same time it is not necessary to spray it. If a lot of dust and dirt has accumulated on the stem, then it is recommended to arrange a warm shower, while it should be washed with a small paint brush or a soft toothbrush.
Suitable soil for echinocactus should be neutral and mineral, and it is good to let the air through. For planting, you can use purchased groundwater for cacti, and experienced growers recommend pouring some brick chips or small gravel into it. You can make the substrate with your own hands, for this by connecting the leaf and sod land, as well as coarse sand and brick chips (can be replaced with small gravel), taken in a ratio of 1: 2: 1: 0.5. In the soil you need to pour a little crushed charcoal to protect the roots from rot.
For planting choose a low and fairly wide pot, because the roots of echinocactus are located near the ground surface.
Feed during active growth 1 time in 4 weeks. To do this, use a special fertilizer for cacti or succulents. During the dormant period it is prohibited to apply fertilizer to the soil.
Transplant is performed only when necessary. The fact is that the roots of the cactus are very sensitive to even the slightest damage, and it is also difficult to transfer it from one pot to another, as its needles are incredibly sharp and strong, while thick gloves and a thick layer of newspapers will not help. Some growers recommend making a solid wire like a loop. At the same time, the wire must be threaded between the needles, and then with the help of the resulting “holder”, transfer the cactus to a new pot.
For reproduction, as a rule, use seeds that sprout very well. Seeding is performed according to the instructions indicated on the package. You can also propagate and kids, which are separated from the parent plant and planted in a separate pot. But it should be borne in mind that the appearance of children - this is quite a rare phenomenon.
Pests and diseases
Most often on such a cactus spider mites, cacti shchitovki, as well as worms live. When pests are found, the plant should have a warm shower, but at the same time the substrate in the pot should be firmly covered to prevent moisture from entering. In the event that the pests have not completely died, it is necessary to carry out the treatment, using the means of the corresponding action.
As a rule, reference books say that children of this type of plants never form. However, for some reason, some gardeners have children at the cactus. There is absolutely nothing strange about it. The thing is that if the main stem is badly damaged due to some disease or as a result of mechanical impact, children will begin to appear (the stem will branch). At the same time, the growth of the most important stem will stop, and it happens that it begins to shrink with time and then dies.
If you notice that something is wrong with echinocactus, for example, its stem has begun to darken, you just need to carefully consider the children that have appeared. They must be carefully separated before the plant is completely infected or dried. However, if the cactus grows and develops normally, then you do not need to trim it.
Types of Echinocactus
Currently, several varieties of echinocactus are bred at home, which differ in size and shape of the stem.
- Echinocactus flat. Differs in rather large sizes. Under favorable conditions, the height of the flower can be two meters. On the cactus is located up to 20 sharp edges. The spines are long and flat. If you take care of the flower correctly, the flowering period can be several months.
- Echinocactus parry. The plant is spherical in shape, differs bluish-gray color of the stem and a small number of thorns. The color of the thorns changes as the plant grows. Spines of young cacti are colored brown or pink. An adult plant has white spines. This species requires more careful attention to itself, since its root system is prone to decay.
- Echinocactus polycephalus. Enough large cactus. Its height can be up to 70 centimeters. There are up to 15 ribs on the stem. Spines are colored yellow or brownish-red.
В домашних условиях кактус цветет очень редко. Происходит это в конец весны или начале лета, когда у цветка начинается период активного роста.
Цветки формируются на крупных экземплярах растения, диаметр которых превышает 50 сантиметров. Цветки имеют светло-желтую окраску. The inflorescence is tubular, slightly elongated, its length can reach 7 centimeters. The flowers consist of narrow petals and are located on the edge of the stem.
Echinocactus Gruzoni unpretentious care and does not require the creation of additional conditions for content.
Lighting and location
Echinocactus loves direct sunlight, so you can safely place the flower on the windows facing the south side. In the summertime, the cactus can be held outdoors by placing it in a well-lit place.
With a lack of sunlight at the cactus may be observed falling off of the thorns. Sometimes red pigmentation appears on the stem of the flower, which is associated with a lot of sunlight. As a rule, it passes quickly when the plant adapts to new conditions. During the adaptation period the plant should be pritenyat.
Echinocactus gruzoni refers to the heat-loving plants. The optimum temperature for keeping at home is 23-27 degrees. At higher temperatures, growth gradually slows down and stops.
In winter, during the rest period, the flower should be moved to a cool room with an air temperature of no more than 12 degrees. At lower temperatures, brown spots may appear on the stem of the plant.
Watering plants and moisture
Echinocactus does not tolerate waterlogging. Watering should be moderate. This will help avoid root decay. It is held a few days after the soil in the pot is completely dry. To determine how dry the soil, you can use a thin wooden stick, which pierce the ground. If the wand is dry, then the flower can be watered. During the rest period the plant is not watered.
For irrigation, use warm water that has settled during the day.
Echinocactus does not require a special humidity regime. It should not be sprayed. In order to remove dust, it is possible to arrange a warm shower for a plant, having previously covered the ground with a plastic bag from overwetting. Accumulated dust must be removed with a toothbrush or brush.
Plant transplant and soil
Transplantation is carried out as the plant grows. The diameter of the new pot should be 1-2 centimeters more than the previous one. For cactus should take a shallow and wide pot.
Due to the large number of sharp needles, transplantation of echinocactus causes some difficulties for florists. It is quite difficult to transplant an adult plant, since it is impossible to take it in hand.
To facilitate the landing of the cactus, it is wrapped in several layers of thick paper or a thick towel. Next, the transplant is carried out in the following order:
- lay a drainage layer on the bottom of the pot, which is used as expanded clay, pebbles, small crushed stone, foam plastic,
- pour a layer of fresh soil
- set the cactus in the center of the pot and cover the side space with soil,
- Do not water the plant and place it in a darkened room for 10-14 days. Then the plant can be moved to a permanent place.
For echinocactus requires loose soil, well breathable air and moisture. You can use the finished soil mixture for cacti, after adding to it small pebbles or broken bricks.
To prepare the soil yourself, you must mix in equal parts turf and leaf soil, add one piece of coarse sand and fine gravel. To prevent the development of fungal diseases, you can use pieces of charcoal.