Current name: Echinopsis arboricola(Kimnach) Mottram
Origin: Bolivia, Argentina, Type locality: Tarija in Bolivia, 600-1000 meters altitude
Trichocereus arboricola is more of an Epiphyte instead of a normal Trichocereus and is often grown like a hanging basket cactus. It often starts off as a columnar cactus, but goes prostrate as soon as it reaches a certain size. You can grow it in a hanging basket or like a columnar Trichocereus.
It’s a very tender cactus with a shiny, bright green color and very thin, needle-like spines. It can reach a total size of more than a meter and up to 5 centimeters in diameter. It usually has 10+ ribs and has very small, very subtle bumps over the areoles, which are slightly felted. The areoles are up to 5 mm apart from each other. It develops aerial roots and has very fine hair on the areoles. Trichocereus arboricola has between 10-16 spines, which are very thin and similar to the spines on some Cleistocactus species.
Trichocereus arboricola is a night flowering species and has a very beautiful flower, which is very large for its size and white in color. It has a very delicate and noble flower.
Trichocereus arboricola is a fairly new species and was described in 1997. Because of that, it’s not included in many old cactus books.
Trichocereus tarmaensis is a close relative of Trichocereus cuzcoensis that was described as a separate species. There are various differences between Trichocereus cuzcoensis and Trichocereus tarmaensis, and some forms of Trichocereus knuthianus are considered to be synonymous with Trichocereus tarmaensis as well.
Trichocereus tarmaensisreaches a size of 2 meters and is pupping from the base. It has 7-9 ribs that are approximately 2 centimeters wide, rounded at the top and with very distinct V-notches above the areoles. The areoles are approx. 2-2,5 centimeters apart with a diameter of 9 millimeters. Young growth areoles have a very fine brown wool that changes it´s color to a darker brown. It has 3-6 radial spines that are between 1 and 3 cm long. It often has one very large downward pointing spine that is up to 10 centimeters long. The plant usually has one of those middle spines. Old spine growth changes its color very soon to a gray, similar to what we know from Trichocereus cuzcoensis.
Flower of E.tarmaensis:
White, very similar or identical to some of the spiny forms of Trichocereus cuzcoensis or Trichocereus peruvianus. The tube has brown hairs and the fruit reaches a maximum diameter of 5 centimeters.
Central peru, Tarma in Peru at around 3000 meters.
Trichocereus tarmaensis looks very similar to Trichocereus tulhyacensis and both species are hard to distinguish if do not have the luck to observe them during the flowering phase . The flower of Trichocereus tulhuyacensis is pink, which is something that does not apply to any other Trichocereus species from this complex. If your Trichocereus has a reddish to pink flower, it´s not Trichocereus tarmaensis but Trichocereus tulhuyacensis or another close relative. Both Trichocereus tarmaensis and Trichocereus tulhuayacensis are very rare and mislabeled anyways. Karel Knize is selling seed of this type under the name KK2148 Trichocereus tarmaensis .
This picture shows a seedgrown specimen that was sold through the SAB shop in Australia.
When looking at this pic, it gets obvious that this type is VERY similar to some types of Trichocereus cuzcoensis, and even has similarities to a KK242. I do not think that specimens of KK2148 could be recognized as such without knowing the label. They are simply synonymous with some types of Trichocereus cuzcoensis. This species grows at around 3000 meters altitude.
Photo: S. Preiss
Below: Some photos from Tarma. The first one does not show a Trichocereus, but the others show some of the wild forms in between Trichocereus tarmaensis and Trichocereus knuthianus.
The name Trichocereus shaferi was described by Britton and Rose in the 1920s and lacked some important information. However, there were some later descriptions by Friedrich Ritter, Curt Backeberg/Rauh and Werdermann that went more into detail.
Trichocereus shaferi pups from the base and reaches a size of 1-1,5 meters. The plant grows halfway prostrate or leaning over and has between 15 and 20 ribs. Britton and Rose gave an average number of 12 ribs, which is dramatically different from the data that were given in later descriptions. The maximum diameter is 5-12 centimeters and the color is a gray/dark green, which you can very well see on the pictures that were provided by Trout. The ribs are 0,5-1 centimeters high and there are substantial furrows .
The areoles on Trichocereus shaferi are white felted and 1-6 mm in diameter and up to 1,2 centimeters apart of each other.
Spines: The spines of Trichocereus shaferi are yellow, very fine and needle-like with a slightly dark-brown tip. It has 7-10 radial spines (up to 1 cm long) and 1-3 middle spines (1-2 cm).
Flower: Very round flower. White. Trichocereus shaferi flowers from the upper part/apex and Britton and Rose gave a size of 15-18 cm.
Fruit: The fruit has very dominant white hairs, as you can beautifully see on the second picture. The edible fruit is round and 3-5 cm in diameter. Green in color with reddish/green scales.
Origin: Ritter encountered this plant near Leon near Jujuy at around 1500-1800 meters growing on rocky slopes. Britton and Rose gave San Lorenzo in the provence Salta at 1800 meters as the location of the typus. Ritter considered his collection in jujuy to be a regional variety but didnt really follow up on it. His collection name was FR41 and there is a large number of seeds that gotten into the collections of cactus fans all around the world.
Where to buy seeds and plants of Trichocereus shaferi? Well, it´s rare and you might come across them on eBay. Like I already mentioned before, I bought a large plant with this name a few years ago and we´re waiting for it to flower next year. Some seed stores and cactus nurseries have them in stock every once in a while, but it´s a rather rare species and it´s not available from South America. I am sure there are some collectors that offer seeds from their collections sometimes, but it´s probably a little bit hard to find and luck has a lot to do with it. If I´d be looking for this species, I´d write emails to Kakteen Haage, Kakteen Uhlig, Succeed, Sacred Succulents and hope for the best. You can also try making a post in our Trichocereus Facebook group but I´ve never really encountered one there. But it cant hurt to ask.
Trichocereus schoenii , also known as Echinopsis schoenii under current nomenclature, is a south Peruvian Trichocereus species that Backeberg described and named after E. Schön, who assisted him financially on his trips. Mr. Schön was from Arequipa, which is where one of the most important habitats of this species is. However, the species is not limited to that area and grows nearby other South Peruvian Trichocereus species. Trichocereus schoenii usually grows in the company of some Corryocactus species and there are also some other Trichocereus species that grow at the same sites.
Trichocereus schoenii resembles Trichocereus santaensis, but differs from it by the long central spine and a slightly different areole shape and rib shape. You need to look very closely to tell them apart, and it´s usually the typical spination that allows you to recognize it as what it is. It´s a very rare and beautiful species which is very rare in cultivation. The plants that are available are usually mislabeled and are usually identified as Trichocereus cuzcoensis or Trichocereus knuthianus.
Trichocereus schoenii is a plant that roughly belongs to the Trichocereus cuzcoensis complex, but there are many differences and I hope to see some cladistic studies about this species one day. The species usually has seven ribs (as seen in the photos) and the spines can get up to 8 centimeters long. You can read a more detailed description including some habitat photos in my book.
Trichocereus schoenii / Echinopsis schoenii photos from South Peru
Photos: Mark Harvey
Echinopsis macrogona / Trichocereus macrogonus in Matucana II
In this chapter I want to show you some of the wild populations of Echinopsis macrogona from Matucana. The species is partially synonymous with Echinopsis peruviana, which is why there is quite some overlay between these two. The name Echinopsis macrogona has a long and troubled history, because most authors have their own opinion about it. Personally, I consider the name Cereus macrogonus (which resulted in later descriptions as Trichocereus macrogonus and Echinopsis macrogona) to be too problematic to count. Its original description lacks information on crucial details such as the country of origin and this leads to the massive confusion surrounding it. Seed sellers carry various species under the name, e.g. Echinopsis peruviana, Echinopsis pachanoi, Trichocereus werdermannianus (currently seen as form of Echinopsis terscheckii), Trichocereus taquimbalensis, Trichocereus tacaquirensis, Echinopsis lageniformis/ Trichocereus bridgesii, Trichocereus santaensis, Trichocereus terscheckii, Trichocereus schoenii, etc. There´s almost no species that this name hasn´t been slapped on, which makes comparisons between plants from the commercial market completely pointless. If I would get a Dollar every time someone tells me that “x plant can´t be Trichocereus macrogonus because they seed grown plant looks completely different” I would be a made man.
How to differentiate Trichocereus macrogonus / Echinopsis macrogona and Trichocereus peruvianus / Echinopsis peruviana?
In this article we show some photos from Matucana, which is the type locality of Echinopsis peruviana. These plants are often referred to as Trichocereus macrogonus and people who identify these plants tend to identify them as Trichocereus macrogonus due to their spine color. I personally do not think it makes a lot of sense to differentiate between Echinopsis peruviana and Echinopsis macrogona as the whole complex is incredibly variable. Differences between a form from Matucana and one from another Peruvian city do not mean that something has to be a different species. The people who get to choose which differences draw clear lines between two related species are the authors who describe them, and so far I have not read a conclusive argumentation on clear boundaries between Echinopsis macrogona and Echinopsis peruviana and I think DNA testing is the one tool that should be used to decide this. However, since there is no country of origin, type locality or Herbarium piece of the original Cereus macrogonus, which makes it impossible to compare other populations against it. And this is pretty much the crux of the problem.
Echinopsis macrogona / Trichocereus macrogonus Huariquina in Matucana
Below you can see some photos from Huariquina in Matucana. All plants there are very beautiful and among the most visually pleasing Trichocereus species we know. Icaro DNA and Los Gentiles look very much like this. The plants grow columnar, but with a clear tendency to lean over every now and then. They do not really grow prostrate, but they don´t always grow a 100% columnar either.
If you like the articles we write, check out some of our other ones:
Pomolargo is another Peruvianus population that is a glowing example for the beauty of this species.
Echinopsis macrogona / Trichocereus macrogonus Collana Roja in Matucana
Collana Roja is another Matucana population that is typical for Echinopsis macrogona. The spines are brow, sometimes even red, and this is one of the only traits that are somewhat usable to differentiate between Echinopsis peruviana and Echinopsis macrogona. Again, most are mostly synonymous anyways, which is underlined through the fact that Echinopsis macrogona was never found again, from the time on that Britton and Rose wrote their description of Trichocereus peruvianus. That alone speaks volumes and the reason is that all the plants which were formerly identified as Cereus macrogonus were later attributed to Britton and Rose´s name. There are differences between the two descriptions, but they are rather small-
Copyright: Chavin Herbalists
Echinopsis macrogona / Trichocereus macrogonus Collana Pichu in Matucana
Collana Pichu is very similar in regards to the phenotype and gets very close to Collana Roja.
Copyright: Chavin Herbalists
Echinopsis macrogona / Trichocereus macrogonus Sucro in Matucana
In Sucro we´ve seen some plants that were relatively short spined or even spineless. There´s quite a few regional forms of this species that is spineless, but these plants are usually very spiny as seedlings and only lose their spines later on. In particular, we´ve grown some seeds of Collana Roja, which are quite spiny as seedlings and we hope they will lose their spines later on.
TRICHOCEREUS VOLUME 2 available now! Echinopsis book
The moment we´ve all been waiting for is here. The new Echinopsis book TRICHOCEREUS VOLUME 2: SAN PEDRO HYBRIDS as well as the bonus content can officially be ordered through our shop. First come, first served. I don´t wanna talk around the bushes for too long….check out our funky Trichocereus link.
Australia Trichocereus: Photos of an amazing collection
This amazing Trichocereus collection can be found in a private garden in Australia. We were given the chance to show this beautiful collection here on our site and I am proud to have it. All photos: Simon Maddern
Trichocereus huarazensis is a columnar cactus from Huaraz in Peru. It is not an official species and it is a commercial name that goes back to Karel Knize. Knize sold seeds and plants from a wild population in Huaraz. A Trichocereus grower in the United States obtained a cutting from Mr. Knize, which was the start for this rare clone in the Trichocereus community. Today, Trichocereus huarazensis is used in many different hybrid crosses of the US breeder Misplant, and it was also used by crosses of the US breeder Nitrogen.
There is also a wild collection of Trichocereus seeds from Huaraz that was collected by Chavin Herbalists. The collection is called Huarazino and it is probably from the same plants that Karel Knize collected his seeds from too.
The origininal Trichocereus huarazensis clone
Trichocereus huarazensis in the wild, also called Huarazino, from chavin Herbalist.
Trichocereus macrogonus, also known as Echinopsis macrogona, is a columnar cactus.
The first description about it was made using the name Cereusmacrogonus SD. Cact. Hort. Dyck.Cult.
Currently valid name name:
Echinopsis macrogona, the name is disputed by some authors and re-described as Trichocereus macrogonus by others. The whole genus Trichocereus is currently being revised and it´ll take a good 10 years till this is somewhat resolved. Echinopsis macrogona / Trichocereus macrogonus is at least partially synonymous with Echinopsis peruviana / Trichocereus peruvianus and it is difficult to clearly divide them. Both are contending names and due the older age of Trichocereus macrogonus (back then it was still called Cereus macrogonus, which was the name from the first description by Salm-Dyck), it´s possible that Trichocereus macrogonus / Echinopsis macrogona will replace Trichocereus peruvianus / Echinopsis peruviana as main species name for this group of plants.
T.macrogonus and its connection to Trichocereus peruvianus
Trichocereus macrogonus is an alternative name for some forms of Trichocereus peruvianus and many authors support this theory. These days, some Peruvian Trichocereus strains with brown spines and dark blue epidermis are usually sold as Trichocereus macrogonus by seed sellers, but these plants are not really different enough to justify treating them as correct species.
Trichocereus macrogonus is a very old name and since Britton and Rose came along with their description of Trichocereus peruvianus, the plants that used to be called Macrogonus were then treated as T. peruvianus. Due to the old age of the species name Trichocereus macrogonus, it is possible that it will be given priority over the newer name T. peruvianus IF the original description of T. macrogonus will be considered to be correct. Right now, this hasn’t been decided yet, but there’s a chance that this will happen. However, many people want to keep the old name Trichocereus peruvianus just because it has a lot of history and traditions attached to it. The future of this species s is unclear and will be decided in the next years. Personally, I consider the name to be extremely problematic due to the many problems associated with it, eg no type locality, no flower description, unclear origin, not being found again in nature, etc.
Synonyms of T. macrogonus:
Cereus macrogona, Echinopsis macrogona, Trichocereus macrogona, Trichocereus glaucus (sometimes. Trichocereus glaucus is a species related to T. chalaensis. However, many seed sellers offer certain strains from the T. peruvianus/macrogonus group as Trichocereus glaucus, eg KK336). Echinopsis glauca, Trichocereus glauca, many strains that belong to T. peruvianus.
Below you can find some photos of plants with this name from the commercial market. They differ greatly and not all belong to Trichocereus peruvianus. There are plants with the label Trichocereus macrogonus being sold that belong to T. bridgesii, T. pachanoi, T. peruvianus, T. werdermannianus, T. taquimbalensis, T. tacaquirensis, T. santaensis, T. bridgesii and Trichocereus cuzcoensis. Because of this, it makes no sense to use plants from the commercial market as standard for this species.
European Macrogonus clone. Very old clone and one of the oldest ones associated with the name.
Different clone that was sold as Trichocereus macrogonus
European Trichocereus macrogonus clone
The photos below show Trichocereus macrogonus in the Huntington Botanical Garden
Trichocereus macrogonus in the Huntington Botanical Garden by Richard Hipp
Origin of Trichocereus macrogonus:
Unkown. Possibly Bolivia but the species could never be found in Bolivia again. Originally, it was assumed that the plant came from Brasil and Borg wrote that the plant came from Bolivia or Argentinia but that could not be verified. Rauh found a Trichocereus in 1954 (collection number K68-1954) that may have been the wild Trichocereus macrogonus. That plant was found around the Mantaro Area in the middle of Peru.
This is the plant in question, and judging by its looks, it could actually be the originally described Trichocereus macrogonus. Back then, the plant was described as Cereus macrogonus (Salm-Dyk) and I know a very similar plant that was distributed by Karel Knize.
Backeberg´s and Rauh´s Photos
And this pic is from Backeberg´s description and shows a plant that is very common in European collections!
Echinopsis macrogona or T. macrogonus is a columnar cactus that is very close to Trichocereus peruvianus or Echinopsis peruviana. Echinopsis macrogona is most likely synonymous with a certain, long-spined type of Peruvianus. The typical epidermis of Trichocereus macrogonus has a frosty, blue color. Trichocereus macrogonus grows columnar and can get up to 3 meters tall and 3-5 centimeters in diameter. Some very large species can even reach a higher diameter. It has 6-9 radial thorns and 1-3 middle thorns that are up to 10 centimeters long.
Spines of Echinopsis macrogona:
The spines are dark brown, black or gray in color. New spine growth can also be yellow. The problem is that there are countless types that are called “Trichocereus Macrogonus”. Some definitely belong in the Trichocereus Cuzcoensis complex while some others are a very frosty type of Trichocereus Peruvianus from Matucana.
About 2 centimeters apart from each other and 5-10 mm in diameter. Brown-felted.
Flowers:White, near the top and up to 18 centimeters long. Trichocereus Macrogonus is a night flowering species.
Fruit: Round fruit, shiny segmented fruit, black or dark brown in color.
Trichocereus Macrogonus is self sterilewhat means that you need two different species´to get seed.
Culture of Trichocereus macrogonus:
The culture of Trichocereus Macrogonus is very easy. Basically, it has exactly the same requirements as Trichocereus Pachanoi (San Pedro Cactus) or Trichocereus Peruvianus (Peruvian Torch). It is a very hardy plant that forgives a lot and as long as you treat it like a cactus instead of a swamp plant, it will pay you back with healthy growth every year. The cactus only needs water during the hot, growing seasons. That means that in summer, you can water it every week or even days as long you allow the soil to dry up between waterings.
You can improve the drainage o
The importance of providing drainage
f your soil by adding purely mineral substrates like pumice, clay substrates like Seramis or simply sand. However, you should add a very small part commercial cactus soil because you want the substrate to be able to store nutrients and purely mineral substrates like sand tend to wash out nutrients very easily. Trichocereus Macrogonus likes a place with half-shade that gets a fair amount of sunlight every day. However, you should make sure not to burn the hell out of it. You need to adapt your plants slowly to sun light and if necessary you need to provide a shade cloth.
Winter & Frost: Trichocereus Macrogonus is a very hardy cactus that can take short night frosts down to -9° Celsius as long as the general health of the plant is ok. However, it requires a minimum average temperature of 10° celsius. That means it can take short frosts down to 15.8° Fahrenheit as maximum frost temperature. The average minimum temperature in Fahrenheit is 50° Fahrenheit.
Winter storage & Winter Protection:
Trichocereus Macrogonus likes a bright spot with lots of fresh air during the wintertime. If you have the luck to live in a country with very little frost, like Australia or the hotter parts of the USA, you wont have the problem of winter storage because you can grow your plants outside but most people in other parts of the world are not able do that.
Fresh air to tackle fungal problems
It´s best to store cacti in a very bright room with fresh air supply to prevent mold. The minimum temperature should be around 9° celsius/50° Fahrenheit. For this type of winter storage, the plants need to be kept dry, without any waterings in between October and April. If you have a greenhouse, you can start taking out the plants by May, but be careful about late night frosts because some south american species that take frost very well. For Trichocereus Macrogonus, this should not be a problem though.
Germination of Trichocereus macrogonus seeds:
The seeds of Trichocereus Macrogonus are like most other Echinopsis & Trichocereus seeds. They need light to germinate and should be sprinkled on top of the soil. They require a minimum germination temperature between 25° and 30° celsius and seedlings need to be watched carefully to prevent heat damage, because though temps up to 30° celsius increase germination rates, everything above can kill the young seedlings in an instant. Watch out for mold or fungus gnats. However, Trichocereus Macrogonus seedlings are actually tough.
Where to get seed:
There are many seed suppliers that sell seed of Trichocereus macrogonus. However, be cautious because there one or two south american wholesalers that sell over aged seed. Please not that there are some extraordinarily good Seed distributors from South America so there is no general rule of thumb. That´s how life is and I would recommend you to test the seed you are offered before you buy a substantial amount of it. I have seen people tank hundreds of dollars for seed that produced one or two seedlings.
Seed Viability, Trichocereus macrogonus:
The seed is viable for many years. This is something that most Trichocereus have in common and the seed is probably viable for at least 5-10 years, though you get the best results within the first year.
Commercial strains, clones or field numbers associated with the name:
KK923 Trichocereus Macrogonus (Cieneguillas, Bolivia), KK1422 (Villa Abecia, Bolivia), KK2151 (Ayacucho, Peru), KK2175 Apurimac Pachachaca (Bolivia), KK2176 Ayacucho, Tr. macrogonus H1306 from the Huntington Botanical Garden, Trichocereus cv. Neon Palm, Trichocereus sp. Luther Burbank, Trichocereus SS01, Trichocereus cv. Oklahoma, and many more. List will be updated. If you know some more, let me know. But the fact that you could as well list all of those as Trichocereus Peruvianus makes this kinda pointless. Both types are synonymous and I just added this page because I dont want to leave it out.
Trichocereus macrogonus for sale
Trichocereus macrogonus is rarely available for sale. The species name is very old and the plants on the commercial market that you get with this label belong to all kinds of species. Most Trichocereus macrogonus for sale are Knize sourced Trichocereus werdermannianus, Trichocereus peruvianus, Trichocereus bridgesii etc.
Trichocereus macrogonus seeds
This is a completely informational page and we do not sell seeds or plants of this species. Like mentioned before, you can get Trichocereus macrogonus seeds from the commercial market. Since it is not known how the original Cereus macrogonus looked like, you can get all kinds of plants under this name though. Trichocereus macrogonus and Trichocereus peruvianus are at least partially synonymous and sellers use both names interchangeably.
This here is what grows out of Köhres or Knize Trichocereus Macrogonus Seed:
Trichocereus macrogonus ‘Fields’
The Fields Macrogonus is an old Australian Trichocereus macrogonus clone that came to Australia through Blossfeld´s first South America expedition. Harry Blossfeld was a cactus collector that financed his expeditions by selling cacti to financiers, and that´s how it probably was with the Fields Macro.
European Macrogonus Clone
Different phenotype, associated with Trichocereus macrogonus.
Red or brown spines are an important way to differentiate between them.
Aerial roots of Trichocereus macrogonus
Good example of a Bolivian Trichocereus macrogonus sourced from Karel Knize. The plant is almost certainly a relative of Trichocereus werdermannianus or taquimbalensis.
Trichocereus macrogonus / Echinopsis macrogona ‘MG Red Spine’ (Rodni Kisar)
Trichocereus Macro hybrid Amun-Re with red flower
European Macro clone
Wild populations from Matucana that may or may not count as Echinopsis macrogona.
Videos on how to differentiate between certain T. peruvianus and T.pachanoi
Trichocereus bridgesii (SD.) Britton & Rose – The Cactaceae, now called Echinopsis lageniformisbecause the name Echinopsis bridgesii was already taken.
C.F. Förster – H.Friedrich & GD Rowley 1974
CITES: Appendix II.
Origin of Trichocereus bridgesii:
Trichocereus bridgesii, also known as Echinopsis lageniformis, grows throughout Bolivia (LA PAZ, Chochabamba, Chuquisaca, Santa Cruz, Tarija. There are many close relatives, such as Trichocereus riomizquensis, Trichocereus crassicostatus, Trichocereus scopulicola and the populations from Isla Del Sol.
Synonyms of T. bridgesii:
Cereus lageniformis, cereus bridgesii, trichocereus crassicostatus, Cereus bridgesii var. longispinus, Cereus bridgesii brevispinus, Cereus lasiacanthus, Trichocereus boliviensis, Trichocereus riomizquensis (some of them), and many more.
Commercial varieties on the market:
KK919 Trichocereus bridgesii, KK920 Trichocereus bridgesii, Trichocereus bridgesii Cristata, TBM type A, TBM type B, Lumberjack, Eileen, Jeans, Psycho0, TBM, Penis Plant, Penis Cactus, Frauenglück or Frauenglueck, Trichocereus bridgesii var. Inermis, Eileen,and many more
Trichocereus bridgesii has been renamed to Echinopsis lageniformis by Friedrich and Rowley during their 1974 merger of the genus Echinopsis. The name Echinopsis bridgesii was already taken by a clumping Echinopsis species from Bolivia, which is a totally different plant and should not be confused with Trichocereus bridgesii.
Trichocereus bridgesii is also called the Bolivian Torch or Achuma and is a very fast growing columnar cactus from the high deserts of Bolivia. It its extremely drought tolerant and withstands colder temperatures than some other Trichocereus species. If you are new to cacti but want to grow one of the San Pedro type cacti, Trichocereus bridgesii is a perfect plant for you.
Description of T.bridgesii
Healthy plants of Echinopsis lageniformisTrichocereus bridgesii have a light green epidermis and between four to eight ribs. The spines can range in coloration from honey-colored to brown, and are located at the nodes in groups of up to four.
It grows similar to a tree and reaches a size of up to 5 meters. The Species is not as glaucous as Trichocereus peruvianus and Trichocereus pachanoi and has a light green epidermis.
Trichocereus bridgesii reaches up to 15 centimeters in diameter and large specimens are often confused with Trichocereus peruvianus. The fact that very thick specimens can look a lot like Trichocereus peruvianus is a reason that there are many misidentified specimens on the market. Some sellers even label them “SAN PEDRO”, “PERUVIAN TORCH” or simply Trichocereus peruvianus / Trichocereus pachanoi, because they usually are more expensive as Trichocereus bridgesii.
It has 4-8 Ribs and the Areoles are about 2 centimeters distanced of each other. Four-ribbed plants are sometimes called “Trichocereus of the four Winds”, though it´s actually a lot more common for this species to grow or lose a rib than you would think. Besides, that four winds stuff is oftenly used as a marketing gimmick, though the plants grow and lose ribs all the time. A Trichocereus that grows a rib looks very much like it would put out some monstrose growth, but on the long term you see that it´s just ribs.
But yeah, the larger they get the more ribs they can have. Trichocereus bridgesii has very broad furrows. The plant can reach up to 3-5 meters.
Spines of Echinopsis lageniformis / T.bridgesii:
4-6 needle-like, yellow Spines. Some of them are very uneven and vary greatly in length and appearance. Some large plants even lose their spines completely. This is something that we encountered a couple of times on larger plants and spineless Bridgesii´s look very much large hybrids between Trichocereus peruvianus and Trichocereus bridgesii.
Flowers of Tr.bridgesii :
The flowers of Trichocereus bridgesii are white and up to 20 centimeters long and 10 centimeters in diameter. Trichocereus bridgesii is a night flowering species and its fruits are usually up to 5 centimeters long. It had white petals and small scales and hairs on the rest of the flower.
Bolivia, La Paz
Trichocereus bridgesii as Grafting Stock:
Trichocereus bridgesii is an excellent grafting stock and is used extensively for that. Though it´s a great stock, it´s not as accepting as Trichocereus spachianus or a cereus. Nonetheless, it´s a strong and vigorously growing stock that will produce large scions very fast.
Regional forms of T. bridgesii:
The fact that most regional forms look very similar makes it very hard to differentiate between them. There are many known clones available, but Trichocereus bridgesii isnt just as variable as the Peruvian species.
The monstrose form of Echinopsis lageniformis/Trichocereus bridgesii is called PENIS PLANT or TBM, sometimes also called Trichocereus bridgesii Inermis. Contrary to the typical columnar growth habit of the species, the TBM cultivar displays short stem segments that branch forming a small bush. The upper part of each stem section is smooth and spineless, resembling a certain male body part. The lower part shows a tendency to form ribs and is spiny. The plant is light green in color.
Cultivation ofTrichocereus bridgesii
This species is one of the strongest growers in the genus Trichocereus or Echinopsis. It´s VERY drought resistant and less problematic than other Trichos. Especially if you grow them from seed, because no matter what else you grow, they will be the ones to survive the longest if you suddenly “forget” to water them for a month or so. The come from Bolivia and live off very little water but also manage to compensate strong rainfalls and are rarely affected by fungal infections or mold. It´s a very thankful plant to grow, especially when you have the luck to plant them outside.
So, cultivation is pretty easy. Don´t water them when it´s cold. It´s the same treatment that you would give any other Trichocereus. Only water them during the hot growth season in summer. If they are in full growth and the temperatures are high, they like to be watered on a weekly basis, but it depends on how fast the soil dries up.
Hold back with the organics
They don´t like soils that contains too much humus and i´d recommend to grow them in a purely mineral soil mix, with pumice, coarse river sand and maybe a very little bit of standard cactus soil to make sure that they are able to take in the nutrients. Generally speaking, Trichocereus bridgesii is the archetype of a cactus that thrives on poor soils. I would not recommend to put them in full sun for the whole day but they can take much more sun that other Trichos that come from more tropical climates.
Winter treatment & frost tolerance:
Trichocereus bridgesii is able to tolerate mild frost. The minimum temperature should now go below -5° Celsius though. Trichocereus bridgesii usually has no problems to compensate light night frosts but the average minimum temperature should not be lower than 10° Celsius! That is around 50° Fahrenheit. One important factor in frost resistance is the humidity of a soil! Plants should be totally dry in winter to make it easier for them to deal with frost. That´s why growers in Europe and other countries with strong frost have to take em inside in winter. The moisture is more dangerous than the cold, though there is a temperature that will kill all cacti no matter how dry they are. Cacti require a bright and well ventilated space with a temperature around 10° Celsius. Not only ensure it that the plants soil system does not rot, it also promotes flowering!
Cultivation from seed:
Trichocereus bridgesii is very easy to grow from seed. The seeds remain their viability for 5-10 years and some even longer. The best germination rate can be expected within the first year though. The seeds require light to germinate and you only sprinkle them on top of the soil. As a germination medium, I would recommend a mix between sowing soil and coarse sharp sand. This reduces your chance of contamination and/or Algae/Moss production.
Moss and algae problems on Trichocereus
Moss and Algae are a real problem for cactus growers because they overgrow your seedlings and usually kill them. If you see green crap on your soil, that is exactly what I am talking about. The seeds only need very little water to germinate, so do not overwater them in the beginning. You can always add more water but you can never take back a bad overwatering because it usually washes the seeds away or will lead to rotten seeds and soil.
Germination temperature for E.lageniformis
Germination temperature for Trichocereus bridgesii or Echinopsis lageniformis is around 25°-30° Celsius. But be careful because small seedlings die very easily because of too much heat. Especially if you germinate in closed containers, temps can get quite high in there. The time needed for them to germinate is between 2-6 weeks. If nothing has germinated after that, it´s probably because a.) there wasn’t enough water to kick start the germination. In this case just add more water and wait some more. b.) the temperatures were not high enough. In this case, just increase the temps and continue to germinate. Or C.) The seed is dead.
Bad quality Trichocereus seeds
There are a couple black sheep in seed business who sell seed that´s between 10-20 years old and the viability is horrible. So if you did everything right and nothing germinated, it´s the seed. Seed quality on the market varies greatly and you never know what batch you will end up with. So if you had a batch batch, I´d recommend you to contact the seller and ask him about it. Stay friendly and polite and they will replace it because they are aware of the great differences in seed quality.
Trichocereus bridgesii can be grown from seed pretty easily. But you can also take cuttings and re-root them. This way, you can multiply your plants dramatically and if you are trying to get a lot of plants, you can also try areole grafting. Trichocereus bridgesii is pretty tough and you can basically stick it in a dry medium like sand and it will probably grow. Just make sure to let the cuts dry out and give the wound enough fresh air until everything is calloused. I use bird sand for that purpose, which is the mineral soil mix that you get in pet stores for the birds to take their dump in. It contains anise and some other minerals that just prevent mold and infections and it is perfect for rooting plants in it.
USDA Zones Trichocereus bridgesii:
10a, 10B and 11
Can be used as grafting stock or just because its´an amazing cactus. Besides, Trichocereus bridgesii is used as natural fence to keep away animals and people.
Photos of T. bridgesii
This is a Herbarium Sample of Trichocereus Bridgesii! Pic: Ben Kamm, Sacredsucculents.com:
TBM aka Trichocereus bridgesii Monstrosa Clone A and B
Peter A. Mansfeld – Trichocereus Bridgesii Monstrose B, Penis Plant
A short spine version of Trichocereus bridgesii (Rodni Kisar)
Trichocereus bridgesii ‘Jeans’ (Gus Freeman)
Monstrose version of Trichocereus bridgesii (Philocacti)
Trichocereus bridgesii in Bolivia (Ben Kamm)
A Trichocereus bridgesii cultivar
Trichocereus bridgesii (Simon Maddern)
Echinopsis bridgesii is not the same as Trichocereus bridgesii
Echinopsis bridgesii K. Trout. Please note that this Bolivian Echinopsis species is not Trichocereus bridgesii. The Echinopsis name was already taken, which is why T.bridgesii is now called Echinopsis lageniformis
KK919 photo by Delia Kisar
Below: T.bridgesii ‘Bruce’ aka E.lageniformis ‘Bruce (GOT and LHB)
The LUMBERJACK clone or LUMBERJACKUS is a rare and sought after Trichocereus that was found in a Lumberjack store in Sacramento by Joe Lev. Its actually an Echinopsis lageniformis with very distinct traits. It has a very typical double-pair spination and a fat body. This clone is known to flower abundantly and it is currently used by US breeder Misplant and Nitrogen.
It is believed to be a hybrid between Echinopsis lageniformis and another species, but it could also be a strange botanical form of Echinopsis lageniformis. For example, the populations from Isla del Sol look very similar.
This clone is really rare and Misplant is one of the few breeders that use it in their crosses. He makes multiple crosses per year with it.
Trichocereus Nitrogen 2
Trichocereus Echinopsis lageniformis Nitrogen 3
Those pics are from Misplant´s mother plants. Copyright: Misplant.net.
ICARO DNA is a strain of Trichocereus macrogonus/peruvianus from Peru. They are collected by the reputable vendor Icaro, who has been active for many years now.
Their strain is an extremely blue and spiny Peruvianus strain that comes from the Matucana region on Peru. Everyone who ever grew some of them knows that they are THE epitome of a non-cuzco Peruvianus.
The shop owner Julio & his ICARO DNA shop have been around forever and just earned a reputation for their consistently great quality.
The ICARO seeds were picked up by many shops and ended up being one of the more common strains around Australia and other parts of the world. Those plants are not clones, but grown from Matucana seeds which are genetically diverse.
Here are some pics for your viewing pleasure! The Photos were donated by Trichocereus.com.au, SAB member Getafix, Blowng,Naja Naja & Sebastian Preiss! If you want to see some more photos of Icaro DNA, check out our Trichocereus Facebook group: https://facebook.com/groups/trichocereus
There are all kinds of Trichocereus hybrids out there and I am happy to show you a couple of the resulting crosses on this page. I will try to update this page as often as I can, to show you what others grew from a certain cross.
Now let me add a little bit of background info to give you an understanding how this breeding works in case you are completely new to this. Almost all Trichocereus species are self-sterile. That means that you need pollen from another plant to produce seed. The pollen donor needs to be genetically different from the receiver. Because of that, it´s not possible to cross two different cuttings from the same mother plant. If you list the parents of a cross, it looks something like this:
Trichocereus peruvianus x Trichocereus bridgesii
That simply means that the Peruvianus is the mother plant, while Trichocereus bridgesii is the Father. In most cases, the resulting offspring comes closer to the mother than to the father. However, there are a lot of exceptions to this and sometimes, the genes of the father are simply more dominant.
You can cross a whole lot of Trichos with each other and most of the crosses will work, if you did it right. But there are some crosses that just genetically don´t match. For example, the seedlings produced by that cross end up being variegated/albinos or simply die. That´s actually very common and can happen all the time. It happens the most when crossing plants like Hildewintera hybrids. And that´s probably because there werent many plants in the gene pool to begin with.
Most Trichocereus species have a white flower and apart from the extremely rare Trichocereus tulhuayacensis, all San Pedros are flowering white. Because of that, this community is trying to breed some San Pedros with colored flowers. There already are a handful of hybrids involving Echinopsis pachanoi with colored flowers. One such Trichocereus hybrid is called SAARWELLEN and the other one is AMUN-RE. But both Trichocereus hybrids are extremely rare.
Now, have a look at some of the photos of Trichocereus hybrids
Trichocereus validus Hybrid
Trichocereus terscheckii x Trichocereus bridgesii ‘Psycho0’
Echinopsis terscheckii x Echinopsis pachanoi
Trichocereus bridgesii ‘SS02’ x ‘Tom Juul´s Giant’
SS02 x Trichocereus bridgesii
Echinopsis peruviana ‘Sausage Plant’ x Trichocereus scopulicola
Echinopsis peruviana ‘ROSEI 1’ x OPEN
Pachanoi x SS02
Echinopsis pachanoi x J3
Echinopsis scopulicola ‘Super Pedro’ x J3
Trichocereus scopulicola ‘Super Pedro’ x Trichocereus bridgesii ‘HB02’
Fields x Rosei #1
Trichocereus bridgesii ‘SS02’ x Sierra Canyon
Trichocereus bridgesii SS02 x Trichocereus chiloensis
Echinopsis lageniformis / Trichocereus bridgesii in Bolivia
Echinopsis lageniformisor Trichocereus bridgesii is probably THE dominant Trichocereus species in Bolivia. Yes, there are others but this species pretty much reflects the Bolivian counterpart to its Peruvian sister species like Trichocereus pachanoi and Trichocereus peruvianus. The populations usually get up to 4-5 meters tall and form large groups. This plant is probably one of the most drought resistant Trichocereus species, which it manages to survive even the extreme temperatures in the Bolivian desert.
The Californian Nursery Sacredsucculents.com visited some regional populations of Trichocereus bridgesii / Echinopsis lageniformis in their Field Trips and I am extremely glad to have them here on the website. All photos are from Ben Kamm.
This plant is very similar to the ones labeled Trichocereus aff. pachanoi. You can definitely see why so many people say that Trichocereus pachanoi grows in Bolivia too. They are extremely similar and it takes a lot of time and effort to differentiate them. The plant grows beside Prosopis Alba!
BK08608.2 Trichocereus bridgesii, mutant Achuma, NE La Paz, Bolivia
Another plant from the Sacred Succulents Field Trip 2008. A mutated version of an Achuma cactus that is just mindblowing. This is the type of thing that you can only encounter in nature. Those amazing walls of cactus are probably some of the most impressive sights that you can come across.
Below: This Trichocereus shows symptoms of Witches Broom disease. There are various reasons for this, some of which are mutations, infections with phytoplasms, etc.
BK08608.3 Trichocereus bridgesii,NE La Paz, Bolivia
It comes from the same site as the BK08608.2 Trichocereus bridgesii / Echinopsis lageniformis, but from a different Plant! The BK08 means that it was visited by Ben Kamm in 2008. The later numbers are either labeled BK09 or BK10. There also were some plants that were visited during the 2014 Field Trip, which were labeled BK14. Those plants are dark green and very similar to what is understood as San Pedro. The flowers are covered with white hairs, which is a great way to keep it apart from most of the Peruvian San Pedros.
The Australian SAB Clone ROD is a rather rare Ecuadorian Echinopsis pachanoi.
This plant comes from the type locality of the species in Ecuador. You can recognize Ecuadorian Pachs by the color epidermis and the unique areole shape. In addition, they sometimes have longer spines than the Peruvian ones, but this does not apply to this clone. “Rod” has very strong V-notches above the areoles. Old growth can have a dark blue/green color (as seen on the pic here) while some young growth is typically grass green.
Flowers: The flowers are white. On the pic below, you can see the interesting white hairs that are covering the flower buds. Unfortunately I could not measure the flowers and the plant but I will hopefully add this kind of info later on.
Origin: This clone could potentially be an early KK339, which ended up being very close to type. It was probably named after the SAB member Rod, who originally brought this clone into cultivation and passed it around among the other members.