Echinocereus is a genus of ribbed, usually small to medium-sized cylindrical cacti, comprising about 70 species native to the southern United States and Mexico in very sunny rocky places. Usually the flowers are large and the fruit edible.
The name comes from the Ancient Greek ἐχῖνος (echinos), meaning "hedgehog," and the Latin cereus meaning "candle." They are sometimes known as hedgehog cacti, a term also used for the Pediocactus and Echinopsis.
Echinocereus are bushy and globular with tight spines which are often colorful and decorative. The flowers last slightly longer than those of other cacti.
Echinocereus is easier to cultivate than many other cacti. They need a light soil, a sunny exposure, a fresh and dry winter to flower. They like a soil slightly richer than other cacti. In the wild, several of the species are cold-hardy, tolerating temperatures as low as -23 °C but only in dry conditions.
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