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CACTACEAE CACTUS FAMILY

Bruce D. Parfitt, except as noted

Perennial herb, shrub, tree, generally fleshy. Stem: cylindric to spheric, or flat; surface smooth, tubercled, or ribbed (grooved); nodal areoles bearing flowers. Leaf: generally 0 or early-deciduous, flat to ± cylindric. Spines: areoles generally with central, radial spines, occasionally with glochids. Flower: generally 1 per areole, bisexual [unisexual], sessile, radial [bilateral]; perianth parts generally many [5], scale-like to petal-like; stamens many; ovary inferior [superior], style 1, stigma lobes generally several [many]. Fruit: dry to fleshy or juicy, indehiscent to variously dehiscent, spiny, scaly, or naked; tubercled or smooth. Seed: generally many, occasionally 0–few.
± 125 genera, ± 1800 species: America (especially deserts), Africa; many cultivated, some edible. [Parfitt & Gibson 2004 FNANM 4:92–257] Spines smaller, fewer (0) in shade forms; yellow spines blacken in age. Introduced species increasingly escape cultivation. Hybridization common in some genera. Taxa of Escobaria in TJM (1993) moved to Coryphantha. —Scientific Editors: Bruce D. Parfitt, Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Unabridged references: [Hunt 2006 The New Cactus Lexicon, DH Books, Milborne Port, England]

Key to Cactaceae

FEROCACTUS BARREL CACTUS
Erect or leaning, branches 0, occasionally branched from tip-injury. Stem: (0)10–200(300) cm, 10–35 cm diam, depressed-spheric to short-columnar, hard, glabrous, not segmented; ribs 13–31, prominent; tubercles not conspicuous on ribs. Spines: [6]10–32 per areole, 2–4.5 mm wide, generally awl-shaped, generally flat, ringed with conspicuous ridges, straight to curved or ± hooked, some bristle-like; central spines generally 4 per areole. Flower: ± terminal, near distal edge of spine cluster, 3–6 cm diam; perianth yellow to red [or purple, or white with ± purple midstripes]; ovary glabrous, spines 0, scales numerous, generally rounded, margins minutely fringed or toothed. Fruit: spheric, ovoid, or cylindric, glabrous, spineless, dehiscent by basal pore. Seed: [1]1.5–3 mm, spheric to subreniform, pitted, black.
25 species: southwestern United States, Mexico. (Latin: fierce cactus) [Taylor 1984 Bradleya 2:19–38]

Key to Ferocactus

F. viridescens (Torr. & A. Gray) Britton & Rose SAN DIEGO BARREL CACTUS
NATIVE
Stem: generally not taller than wide, depressed-spheric to cylindric. Spines: 10–24, generally spreading, longest straight or ± curved, red, pink or ± yellow, ± gray or yellow in age. Flower: inner perianth occasionally with red-brown midstripes; style 6–9 mm, ovary 5–7 mm, scales fringed-dentate. Fruit: yellow (to ± red). Seed: 1.5–2 mm.
2n=22. Sandy to rocky areas; 10–150 m. South Coast (San Diego Co.); Baja California. Threatened by urbanization, off-road vehicles, collecting. May–Jun [Online Interchange] {CNPS list}

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Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on Aug 2 2014
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Ferocactus, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=25772, accessed on Aug 2 2014

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click for enlargement Ferocactus viridescens
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2005 Deborah Leonard

Bioregions in which Ferocactus viridescens occurs Markers link to CCH specimen records. If the markers are obscured, reload the page [or change window size and reload]. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.