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Coryphantha alversonii
FOXTAIL CACTUS

Higher Taxonomy
Family: CactaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: CACTUS FAMILY
Habit: 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.
Genera In Family: +- 125 genera, +- 1800 species: America (especially deserts), Africa; many cultivated, some edible. Note: 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.
eFlora Treatment Author: Bruce D. Parfitt, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Bruce D. Parfitt, Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin, Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: CoryphanthaView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: BEEHIVE CACTUS
Habit: Generally erect, not branched, or if branched then forming low +- 50 cm diam clumps with up to 12[200] branches. Stem: not segmented; 2--15 cm, 2--15 cm diam, spheric, ovoid, or cylindric, soft-fleshy to firm, ribs 0, tubercles conic to cylindric, grooved along distal surface from base (axil) to spine cluster at tip. Spines: 3--95 per areole, < 1 mm diam, needle-like, smooth, straight [curved or hooked]; central spines 3--12. Flower: +- at stem tip, in axil of tubercle; 6--37[100] mm diam; perianth +- yellow-green to rose-pink or +- purple; ovary glabrous, spines 0, scales generally 0--few, fringed [entire]. Fruit: indehiscent, wide-ellipsoid to narrowly obovoid, spineless. Seed: 1.3--2.3 mm, reniform, pitted, black or brown.
Species In Genus: 16 species: western United States, Mexico. Etymology: (Greek: crown + flower, referring to top flower position)

Coryphantha alversonii (J.M. Coult.) Orcutt
NATIVE
Habit: Occasionally +- decumbent. Stem: generally 1, 10--27 cm, 6--9 cm diam, cylindric. Spines: per areole 8--10 centrally, 12--18 radially. Flower: +- 3 cm diam, inner perianth widely spreading, pale to deep rose-pink or rose-violet, midstripe conspicuously darker; stigma lobes widely spreading, white. Chromosomes: 2n=22.
Ecology: Sandy or rocky alluvium, creosote-bush scrub; Elevation: 75--600 m. Bioregional Distribution: s DMoj, DSon. Flowering Time: May--Jun Note: Threatened by collecting.
Synonyms: Escobaria vivipara (Nutt.) Buxb. var. alversonii (J.M. Coult.) D.R. Hunt; Coryphantha vivipara (Nutt.) Britton & Rose var. alversonii (J.M. Coult.) L.D. Benson; Mammillaria alversonii (J.M. Coult.) Zeiss.
eFlora Treatment Author: Bruce D. Parfitt
Jepson Online Interchange
Listed on CNPS Rare Plant Inventory

Previous taxon: Coryphantha
Next taxon: Coryphantha chlorantha

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botanical illustration including Coryphantha alversonii

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Citation for this treatment: Bruce D. Parfitt 2016. Coryphantha alversonii, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=20477, accessed on February 08, 2016.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2016. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on February 08, 2016.


Coryphantha alversonii
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© 2013 Barry Rice
Coryphantha alversonii
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© 2013 Barry Rice
Coryphantha alversonii
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© 2014 Neal Kramer
Coryphantha alversonii
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© 2012 Keir Morse
Coryphantha alversonii
click for enlargement
© 2012 Keir Morse
Coryphantha alversonii
click for enlargement
© 2012 Keir Morse

More photos of Coryphantha alversonii in CalPhotos


Geographic subdivisions for Coryphantha alversonii:
s DMoj, DSon.
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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map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).

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Data provided by the participants of the Consortium of California Herbaria.
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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.