Spineless Golden Barrel Cactus
Argentina (Tucum n).
DescriptionA globular entity, this green colored cactus has prominent spine-edged surface along with ribs and areoles. This plant differs from the common Golden barrel cactus (Echinocactus grusonii) only for the very short spines. Except for the spines it is identical in shape and size to the standard species. It has a single slowly growing globe-shaped stem that became elongated (barrel-shaped) in maturity, up to 90cm (180cm) in height and spread. This stemis pale green and heavily ribbed with numerous areoles sprouting radial, yellow spines. They normally offset with advanced age and a few multiples occur even at small sizes.
The flowers are produced from end of spring to summer only on larger mature specimens receiving enough full sun. Flower are diurnal, vivid yellow (4-5 cm wide) and form a circular ring at the top of the plant, but are not very visible being small in relation with the size of the barrel, and lost into the creamy coloured wool at the plant apex.
Like most cacti they're drought tolerant and need very little care and attention to grow well. Not enough sunlight and over-watering are common mistakes.
Plenty of sunshine will keep this cacti more than happy. In a glass room you may have to provide some shade during a hot summers day to prevent sunburn
Feed every 4 weeks with a high potassium fertilizer during summer
It is an excellent plant for garden rockery settings, desert type landscapes, patios and botanical gardens
For watering cacti, the golden rule is to make sure the soil is completely dry before watering! This will stop the roots from rotting. It is advised to always use a pot with a drainage hole so that excess water can get drained out. If kept in a sunny area, you will need to water it once every week. If it is in a semi shaded or filtered light area, you might need to water it once in 2 weeks.
Cacti like soil that is well aerated and fast draining. You can fertilise the cactus in the summer months when it is in its growing season. During the winters it is best to cut back on any fertiliser and let the plant rest.