Oroya peruviana

Synonyms:

Echinocactus peruvianus
Echinopsis urbis-regum
Oroya baumannii
Oroya baumannii var. rubrispina
Oroya gibbosa
Oroya gibbosa var. citriflora
Oroya laxiareolata
Oroya laxiareolata var. pluricentralis
Oroya neoperuviana
Oroya neoperuviana var. depressa
Oroya neoperuviana var. ferruginea
Oroya peruviana var. conaikensis
Oroya peruviana var. pluricentralis
Oroya subocculta

Habitat:

O. peruviana is native to Peru where the plant grows in extremely rocky and drought habitats and can spread up to 4700 m of altitude.

Description:

O. peruviana is a very resistant cactus with amazing blooming belonging to the Cactaceae botanical family. The plant grows solitary and can reach up to 25 cm in height and 15 cm in diameter. The stem is from spherical to barrel-shaped, dark green to blue-green in color and arranged in 12-35 ribs made of tubercles. The ribs bear long, narrow whitish areoles. On the areoles are inserted 15-20 curved inward radial spines and 6 reddish-brown to yellow-orange central spines. The spines wrap around the plant and resemble a bird’s nest. Blooming occurs from spring to summer and flowers are funnel-shaped, pink-orange with a yellow center. The fruits are spherical, fleshy yellow containing small brownish seeds. The root is tuberous.

Cultivation:

This is a slow growing plant, easy to cultivate. The plant needs a full light sun exposure but is recommended to avoid direct sun-light in the hottest periods. The plant does not like temperatures below 8°C so it needs to be placed indoors in the coldest periods. The soil should be mixed with pumice, clay and loam to allow the drainage and prevent the root rot, the plant is prone to it indeed. Remember to use a perforating pot to drain excess water. Watering can be done regularly in Spring and Summer: during the vegetative period you can water the plant (every 7 days), checking that the soil is completely dry before watering again; in winter you should stop the watering to allow the plant to enter dormancy. If you want a faster and lush growth you can fertilize the plant once a month during the growing season with the specific fertilizers for cacti; stop fertilizing throughout the winter. If the pot starts to be too small for the plant you can repot the plant in a pot 2 cm wider. Repotting should be done early in the growing season with fresh new potting soil. Be careful to red spiders and mealy bugs.

Propagation:

Propagation can be done by cutting or by seed. By cutting you can make the cut during the spring and then let the cutting dry; after a few days the cut surface will dry and a callus will form, then place the cutting in a mixture of sand, soil and pumice. To increase the success of propagation you can make two or more cuttings at the same time. For cuttings it is recommended temperatures around 20 °C. By seed it is very simple to propagate the plant, it is enough to sow the seed in a sandy loam soil and keep it with a high level of humidity and at temperature of 14 C°.

Curiosity:

Oroya is also the name of a city and a district of Peru, from which these Cactaceae come.

Official Web Site:
www.giromagi.com

Italian Blog:
www.giromagicactus.com

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