Habitat: Northern Argentina
Cultivation: Chamacereus are tough plants and not particularly difficult to take care of. They require the same attentions as may other cacti, so pay attention to waterings, provide a good sun exposure and make sure the vernalization occurs without any problem.
Curiosity: The name “Chamae” is an ancient Greek word, meaninf “short, dwarf”: this tiny plants reach a maximum height of a few inches.
The genus “Chamacereus” includes few dwarf cacti today classified into the bigger genus “Echinopsis”, which includes several other dwarf cactis.
Unlike many other tiny cactis, stems of Chamacereus are elongated in shape but they remain short, reaching maximum heights of 5-10 centimeters. They are light green and divided into ribs of medium depth. Areoles and spines lie on the surface of these ribs. “Areole” is a botanical term to describe small bumps on cacti out of which grow clusters of spines. Spines are whitish, short and sturdy.
Flowers are really big, compared to the plant, red to intense orange, with a funnel-shaped calix and long, coloured petals. Blossomings are particularly abundant and last several months.
These plants form generally several offset at the base of their stems. When left developing, this offsets contribute to form pretty bushes.
VARIETY AND TYPES
Here below there are some species of Chamacereus: try to check our online shop in the section “Chamacereus” to find some of them!
- C. saltensis
- C. schreiteri
- C. silvestrii (the most representative one)
- C. stilowianussilvestri
TIPS FOR GROWING
Here below are our tips for growing your Chamacereus:
Chamacereus need plenty of light and an aired environment, especially during the Winter.
They love high temperatures. In Winter they can bear a minimum temperature of 2ºC, but only if the soil is well dry.
Pay attention: these cactus require very little water. Water once every 5-6 days and wait until the soil dries completely up before a new watering.
Use a standard cactus mix.
Repotting is necessary at the beginning, when the plant is still young and grows faster, and in the case you let the offsets develop to form bushes. Check the roots, more than the dimentions of the stems: when they seem to seek for space, repot.
They can be propagated very easily through their offsets growing at the base of the plant. It’s sufficient to take them off in the beginnning of Spring and plant them. Also propagation through seeds is possible, maintaining the soil humid until they germinate, at a temperature of 20ºC.