Escobaria abdita

Escobaria abdita


Escobaria abdita

Escobaria abdita is an attractive small geophytic cactus with a swollen root and stems with short, ivory to chalk-white spines. The stems…

Escobaria abdita - garden

Accepted Scientific Name: Escobaria missouriensis (Sweet) D.R.Hunt
Cact. Succ. J. Gr. Brit. 40(1): 13 (1978) Remarks: sp. nov. for Cactus mammillaris sensu Nuttall (Gen. N. Amer. Pl. 1: 295. 1818), non Linnaeus (1753)

Origin and Habitat: Navajo desert, Woodruff, northeastern part of Arizona, USA
Altitude: 1600-1800m
Habitat: They grows almost buried in the ground among rocks and are invisible except when they are plumped up from recent rain.

Description: The Escobaria missouriensis ssp.navajoensis is a interesting type of Escobaria missouriensis but tiny.
Stem: Flattened only a 1-3 cm broad, so it's a very small species.
Flowers: Yellow, small (2-3 cm).
Spines: Very short.

Subspecies, varieties, forms and cultivars of plants belonging to the Escobaria missouriensis group

  • Escobaria missouriensis" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/10274/Escobaria_missouriensis'> Escobaria missouriensis (Sweet) D.R.Hunt : (ssp. missouriensis) Tubercles 6-9 mm long, 10-20 radial spines, and yellow or pink flowers. Distribution: Ranges from Idaho to North Dakota, south on the Great Plains to Nebraska, and in the Rocky Mountains and Colorado Plateaus to New Mexico and Arizona
  • Escobaria missouriensis subs. asperispina (Boed.) N.P.Taylor : Tubercles to 18 mm long, 9-10 radials, and greenish yellow or cream flowers. Distribution: Southeastern Coahuila and Nuevo Leon.
  • Escobaria missouriensis var. caespitosa" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/10297/Escobaria_missouriensis_var._caespitosa'> Escobaria missouriensis var. caespitosa (Engelm.) D.R.Hunt
  • Escobaria missouriensis var. marstonii (Clover) D.R.Hunt
  • Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/9998/Escobaria_missouriensis_subs._navajoensis'> Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis Hochstätter : Plant whith short tubercles (only 2 mm long) and small flowers 2-3 cm in diameter that are yellowish with dark midveins. Distribution: Navajo County, Arizona.
  • Escobaria wissmannii" href='/Encyclopedia/CACTI/Family/Cactaceae/10285/Escobaria_wissmannii'> Escobaria wissmannii (Hildm. ex K.Schum.) hort. : It is not easily separable by any character from Escobaria missouriensis. Distribution: Texas

Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) Edward Anderson “The Cactus family” Timber Press, Incorporated, 2001
2) James Cullen, Sabina G. Knees, H. Suzanne Cubey "The European Garden Flora Flowering Plants: A Manual for the Identification of Plants Cultivated in Europe, Both Out-of-Doors and Under Glass" Cambridge University Press, 11/Aug/2011
3) David R Hunt Nigel P Taylor Graham Charles International Cactaceae Systematics Group. "The New Cactus Lexicon" dh books, 2006
4) Jackie M. Poole, William R. Carr, Dana M. Price, Jason R. Singhurst “Rare plants of Texas: a field guide” Texas A&M University Press, 30/Dec/2007

Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Escobaria missouriensis subs. navajoensis Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli

Cultivation and Propagation: This plant is extremely xerophytic, adapted to very dry soils and is quite susceptible to over-watering if kept in a non ventilated place. It comes from an area of summer rainfall.
Growth rate: Slow-growing.
Soil: Grow it in an open mineral, sandy-gritty cactus compost and provide a very good drainage.
Exposure: It is suited for sunny-brightly exposure, but can tolerate light shade. However it will do its best only with lots of sun and become stressed with inadequate light which could result in poor growth and unnatural shape. It has a good heat tolerance.
Watering: Water sparingly and keep it completely dry during winter. Mature individuals easily rot and die especially after transplanting so be extremely cautious with watering. Keep dry in winter or when night temperatures remain below 10° C. Water it less than average if in bigger pots. (but for outdoors cultivation it is very resistant to wet conditions, too).
Fertilization: Feed them once during the growing season with a fertilizer specifically formulated for cactus and succulents (high potash fertilizer with a dilute low nitrogen), including all micro nutrients and trace elements diluted to ½ the strength recommended on the label. They thrive in poor soils and need a limited supplies of fertilizer to avoid the plants developing excess vegetation, which is easily attacked by fungal diseases.
Special need: It is suited for airy exposures. Provide very good ventilation. Nearly all problems occur as a result of overwatering and poor ventilation, especially when weather conditions are dull and cool or very humid. They must have very dry atmosphere.
Hardiness: Very cold resistant and often snow-covered. It can easily be grown outdoors and safe easily to -23° C but in cultivation it is best to avoid severe freezing temperatures.
Pests & diseases: These cacti may be attractive to a variety of insects, but plants in good condition should be nearly pest-free, particularly if they are grown in a mineral potting-mix, with good exposure and ventilation. Nonetheless, there are several pests to watch for:
- Red spiders: Red spiders may be effectively rubbed up by misting the plants from above.
- Mealy bugs: Mealy bugs occasionally develop aerial into the new leaves and flowers with disfiguring results, but the worst types develop underground on the roots and are invisible except by their effects.
- Scales, thrips and aphids: These insects are rarely a problem.
- Rot: Rot is only a minor problem if the plants are watered and “aired” correctly. If they are not, fungicides won't help all that much.
Propagation: Usually propagated from seeds (seldom produces offsets) or graft. The seeds (no dormancy requirement, they germinate best at 25°C) can be sown in pots of fine, well-drained sandy soil, any time during the spring when temperatures are warm. Cover the seeds with a fine layer of grit and water from below with a fungicide to prevent damping off. For the 1-2 weeks cover the pots with a sheet of glass/clear perspex to keep the humidity levels high. Remove the glass and replace it with light shade-cloth and mist once or twice a day for the next two weeks after which most seeds should have germinated. From then on mistings can be reduced to every second and then every third day as the little plants grow. The seedlings should not be disturbed until they are well rooted after which they can be planted separately in small pots. Sometimes it is grafted to avoid root rot problems as plants grafted on an hardy stock are easy to grow and no special skill is required.

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Plant height and spread is seasonal therefore we list by pot size rather than a defined plant size. The height and spread of the plant delivered will vary depending on the season, meaning arrival images are an indication only.

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Thompson & Morgan strives to ensure that all its plants are delivered to you in the perfect condition for planting. Sadly, the time it takes to deliver to certain locations in the UK means that we can't guarantee this, so regretfully we are unable to ship live plants to the following areas: HS, IV41-IV49, IV51, IV55-56, KW15-KW17, PA34, PA41-48, PA60-PA78, PA80, PH40-PH44, TR21-TR24, ZE1-ZE3


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