Echinocactus spp.

Echinocactus is a genus of about 15 species of spherical cactus native to Mexico and the southwestern America. Mature plants flower in summer, showing off rings of bell-shaped yellow, red, pink, or magenta blooms that open during the day. Perhaps the best known species is the Golden Barrel, E. grusonii, from Mexico. Though common in the houseplant and landscape industry, the Golden Barrel has become very rare in habitat. One of two genera of barrel cactus, members of this genus usually have heavy spination and relatively small flowers. The fruits are copiously woolly, and this is one major distinction between the two barrel genera’s Echinocactus and Ferocactus.