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Sclerocactus johnsonii

Higher Taxonomy
Family: CactaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key

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: SclerocactusView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Habit: Erect or ascending, branches generally 0. Stem: 5--20 cm, 2--12 cm diam, ovoid to cylindric, not segmented, firm; ribs 8--21, prominent; tubercles distinct along ribs. Spines: [2]10--24 per areole, 0.3--2.1 mm diam, needle-like or awl-shaped, straight to curved or hooked; central spines 1--11 per areole. Flower: +- terminal, from upper edge of spine cluster, 25--75 mm diam; perianth +- green-yellow to magenta; ovary glabrous, spineless, scales sparse, rounded, ciliate at least near tip. Fruit: dehiscent by 2--4 short longitudinal slits, cylindric to +- spheric, spines 0. Seed: 2--3.7 mm, reniform, tubercled, glossy or shiny, black.
Species In Genus: +- 25 species: southwestern United States, Mexico. Etymology: (Greek: hard or cruel cactus)
eFlora Treatment Author: J. Mark Porter & Edward F. Anderson

Sclerocactus johnsonii (Parry ex Engelm.) N.P. Taylor
Stem: 10--25 cm, ovoid to cylindric; ribs 17--21. Spines: yellow or pink to +- red; central spines 3--4 cm; radial 9--10 per areole. Flower: +- green-yellow, or pink to magenta. Fruit: 7--15 mm, 3--5 mm diam; scales widely cordate, ciliate. Chromosomes: 2n=22.
Ecology: Granitic slopes and plains, creosote-bush scrub; Elevation: 500--1200 m. Bioregional Distribution: n DMoj (Inyo Co.); Distribution Outside California: to southwestern Utah, northwestern Arizona. Flowering Time: Apr--May
Synonyms: Echinomastus johnsonii (Parry ex Engelm.) E.M. Baxter;
Unabridged Synonyms: Echinocactus johnsonii Parry ex Engelm.; Neolloydia johnsonii (Parry ex Engelm.) L.D. Benson
eFlora Treatment Author: J. Mark Porter & Edward F. Anderson
Jepson Online Interchange
Listed on CNPS Rare Plant Inventory

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botanical illustration including Sclerocactus johnsonii


Citation for this treatment: J. Mark Porter & Edward F. Anderson 2012, Sclerocactus johnsonii, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora,, accessed on July 17, 2018.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2018, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on July 17, 2018.

Sclerocactus johnsonii
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© 2014 Dana York
Sclerocactus johnsonii
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© 2016 Dana York
Sclerocactus johnsonii
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© 2005 James M. Andre
Sclerocactus johnsonii
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© 2014 Dana York
Sclerocactus johnsonii
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© 2010 Neal Kramer
Sclerocactus johnsonii
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© 2014 Dana York

More photos of Sclerocactus johnsonii in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Sclerocactus johnsonii:
n DMoj (Inyo Co.);
Markers link to CCH specimen records. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues. Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
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, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.