Family: Cactaceae
Habitat: Mexico
Cultivation:  To grow well it needs high temperatures, but it also tolerates cold very well: in fact it holds a temperature up to 4 ° C. We recommend to use  narrow vessels and to repot every year.
Curiosity: As for other types of cacti, the name comes from the greek echinos (porcupine) combined, in this case, to the Latin term fossula (small pit). In fact we will see that these plants  are characterized by deep furrows between the various ribs, which cover their surface. 


The genus Echinofossulocactus is easily recognized compared to other cacti. The shape is mostly globular, but with age tends to become columnar; the color is usually  bright green. The characteristic that distinguishes it is the special indentations that geometrically divide the surface. The effect is given by  the fact that the ribs along the trunk, also common to other cacti, are particularly pronounced and frequent. Thus the stem portions appear narrow, nearly lamellar.

Along the stem there are fluffy areolas, distributed  irregularly, from  which come out strong thorns with a ranging color from white to reddish-brown. In the young specimens, the thorns can be even larger than the cactus itself. The flowers are small but very beautiful: they have funnel-shaped, speckled colors from white , pale pink, to purple, with central yellow stamens . They usually sprout from the top of the cactus in groups of 3, 5 or more – depending on the age and the specimen size.


As it often happens in the context of the succulent, many species have been recently reclassified. Almost all have been moved to Stenocactus and as  Echinocactus are only two remained:

  • Echinofossulocactus confusus
  • Echinofossulocactus rosasianus

For information purposes, however, we write the complete list of all the species (and the main variants) also according to the previous classification, aware that we still refer to these plants as Echinofossulocactus.

Here are some:

  • E. albatus
  • E. albatus forma cristata
  • E. anfractuosus 
  • E. arrigensis 
  • E. arrigensis forma cristata
  • E. caespitosus
  • E. coptonogonus
  • E. crispatus 
  • E. crispatus forma cristata 
  • E. crispatus var. longispinus
  • E. densispinus
  • E. erectocentrus
  • E. fasciculatus 
  • E. gladiatus 
  • E. guerraianus
  • E. guerraianus forma cristata
  • E. hastatus
  • E. kellerianus 
  • E. lamellosus 
  • E. lloydii
  • E. longispinus
  • E. macracanthus
  • E. multicostatus 
  • E. multicostatus forma cristata 
  • E. ochoterenanus
  • E. penthacanthus
  • E. phyllacanthus
  • E. phyllacanthus “Grandicornis” 
  • E. phyllacanthus v violaciflorus 
  • E. robustus
  • E. rosasianus
  • E. sp. ALBINOS
  • E. sp. L1564 
  • E. sp. VARIEGATA 
  • E. sulphureus
  • E. tricuspidatus
  • E. vaupelianus
  • E. vaupelianus forma cristata 
  • E. violaciflorus 
  • E. wippermannii
  • E. xiphacanthus
  • E. zacatecasensis


Here are our recommendations for the care  of Echinofossulocactus:

  • The required exposure is in full sun, as for the majority of cacti.
  • The average Echinofossulocactus requires high temperatures (around 30 ° C), but resists to the cold rather well. The minimum tolerated temperature is 4 ° C, as long as  the soil is completely dry.
  • Water regularly once a week in summer, but making sure that the soil is completely dry between a watering and the other. Decrease the frequency in autumn to fully suspend it during the winter months.
  • The soil must be very porous: the ideal one is a mixture of peat, sand and aggregates because it ensures good drainage and sufficient lightness.
  • Fertilize only in spring and summer, add a specific fertilizer for cacti to normal watering once a month.
  • It is recommended to choose, for the Echinofossulocactus, vessels a bit larger than the base of the plant. Consequently, each year will be better to repot -, taking care not to damage the roots.

As for  many cacti, we usually proceed to the propagation by seeds. The seeds should be planted in a sandy loam and left to germinate at a temperature of 21 ° C, in the shade. If you notice, at the base of the plant, sprouting pollens (quite rare, to tell the truth), you can cut them with a knife, previously sterilized, and use as cuttings

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