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Trichocereus santiaguensis

Trichocereus santiaguensis is a regional variety of Trichocereus spachianus. And this clone has been floating around for at least 20 years. It sometimes is labeled Trichocereus pachanoi or Trichocereus bridgesii. And though the spination very rarely comes through, it makes it obvious that this is absolutely not a plant from the San Pedro group. The epidermis has a bright green color, which is typical for Trichocereus spachianus as well. If you are interested in seeds of Trichocereus spachianus, you can get some high quality seeds here:

The Trichocereus santiaguensis monstrosa is a nursery produced cultivar that sometimes shows up on websites like eBay.

The Tr. santiaguensis monstrose is probably a nursery produced mutant that was grown from Ritter´s Trichocereus santiaguensis seed. It is also called green pepperoni cactus, cereus pepperone, and so on. There only were very few collections of this plant and it would be surprising to hear if it is unrelated to the stuff that was collected by Friedrich Ritter. All the seeds I bought were dead as wood.

Now let´s summarize what this plant is synonymous with:

  • Trichocereus spachianus monstrosa
  • Trichocereus santiaguensis monstrosa
  • Cereus santiaguensis  monstrosa
  • Cereus spachianus monstrosa
  • Trichocereus santiaguensis monstrosa
  • Echinopsis santiaguensis  monstrosa

Please note that this is NOT synonymous with Trichocereus santaensis, which is a regional form of Trichocereus pachanoi or Trichocereus peruvianus that looks substantially different and originally comes from the Santa Valley in Peru.

I also seen this labeled Trichocereus santiagoensis monstruosa, but I rather think that this is some kind of a spelling error.
The plant grows mostly spineless and looks like a very thick spineless variety of a TBM. This plant is really rare and is not related to the two similar looking Lophocereus monstrosa cultivars that exist too.
The spines are light brown and look like the spines on a standard Spachianus.

I am not sure how it got into cultivation but it is believed that this is actually a nursery-produced cultivar. The plant is sometimes available in our Trichocereus Facebook Group and I recently saw quite a lot of them offered for sale.

Trichocereus santiaguensis monstrosa
Trichocereus santiaguensis monstrosa 2
Trichocereus Echinopsis Santiaguensis Cristate Monstrose 237
Trichocereus Echinopsis Santiaguensis Cristate Monstrose3aa
Trichocereus Echinopsis Santiaguensis Cristate Monstrose 40

Check out our main plant database pages for Trichocereus pachanoi aka Echinopsis pachanoi here:

And Trichocereus bridgesii here:

Trichocereus scopulicola

Also check out our Trichocereus Facebook group here:

https://facebook.com/groups/trichocereus

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Trichocereus spachianus / Echinopsis spachiana WOW

Trichocereus spachianus aka Echinopsis spachiana is a columnar cactus that originates in Argentina.

Soehrensia_spachiana Elia Scudiero

Synonyms: Trichocereus shaferi, Trichocereus santiaguensis, Cereus spachianus, Echinocereus spachianus, Cereus santiaguensis, Echinopsis santiaguensis, Trichocereus manguinii, Trichocereus trichosus, Trichocereus spachianoides

If you want to buy seeds of Trichocereus spachianus, you can find some here:

The history of Trichocereus spachianus is very confusion and most taxonomists have their own opinion on how the plant originally came from and which subspecies or varieties are synonymous with it. The original plant described by Lemaire as Cereus spachianus in 1840 was said to originally come from Mexico and differed substantially from what we know as Trichocereus spachianus. Ten years later in 1850, Salm-Dyck described the Trichocereus spachianus as we know it today. Salm-Dycks plant is the modern Trichocereus spachianus. And according to his description, it has around 8 Ribs, a rib height of 10 mm and an areole distance of 20 mm.  Both descriptions lacked Flower descriptions, but there is what Lemaire´s plant looked like according to the description: 10-15 ribs, rib height of 5 mm and an areole distance of 6-10 mm.  The origin of Trichocereus spachianus is still not known, but there are some types in nature that are very similar to almost identical. Trichocereus santiaguensis grows around Santiago de Estero is the one that I suspected to be the original plant that was described as our modern Trichocereus spachianus. Besides, there is another population of a plant that was described as Trichocereus shaferi, which is probably synonymous too. Trichocereus shaferi grows in Jujuy near Leon. Another very similar Tricho grows in Bolivia and is called Trichocereus tenuispinus. That name is absolutely not valid and I am just mentioning it for the sake of completeness.

Trichocereus spachanius Description

Up to 2 meters tall and pupping from the base. Pups grow upwards and parallel to the main column. 10 – 15 Ribs and areoles approx. 1 centimeter apart. With yellow wool. 8-10 radial spines (0,6 bis 1 cm long) and 1 strong middle spine.

Flower: The flower of Trichocereus spachianus is white and up to 20 centimeters large. The Flowers don´t smell and the wild varieties are very unlike the ones in cultivation. Trichocereus spachianus is a night-flowering species, but the flowers stay open until late in the day.

Origin: Argentina (around Mendoza), in San Juan, La Rioja and San Luis. Jujuy (1500-1800 meters)

Trichocereus spachianus is a very tough and resistant cactus that can be used for all kinds of purposes, including as Grafting stock, fencing plant or for Hybrid cultivation. The flowers are very large and there are some amazing hybrids that involve Trichocereus spachianus. It is one of the best grafting stocks because it accepts many hosts. There are all kinds of plants that are synonymous with Trichocereus spachianus and none of the older species names like Trichocreus Santiaguensis or Trichocereus shaferi are valid today. Trichocereus spachianus is also called “Golden Torch” or “Golden Torch Cactus“.

Cultivation of Trichocereus spachianus:

Echinopsis spachiana is very frost resistant, but temperatures shouldnt go below -5° to -10° Celsius and it greatly depends on the general health of the plant and the dryness of the substrate if the plant suffers any damage. It has to be kept completely dry over winter and the bets temperature to overwinter it inside is at around 10° Celsius and with sufficient fresh air.

Seed & live cuttings sources: There are many sources for Trichocereus spachianus, including seed from various private sellers or commercial shops like Köhres, Misplant or SAB. Besides there are cuttings available from shops like Ebay and Amazon.

Varieties: There really aren´t that many accepted varieties of Trichocereus spachianus available. But there are a couple of regional varieties like Trichocereus shaferi, Trichocereus santiaguensis or Trichocereus spachianoides, which was a very similar plant that was probably synonymous and was collected and sold by Friedrich Ritter. The plant had the collection number FR980 and was collected in 1960/61.

Soil requirements: Trichocereus spachianus should be given a purely mineral soil mix that dries out very fast because it tends to suffer from rot if it is grown in seed with too much humous. You can use pumice, sand or any other mineral substrate. They like to get fertilizer on a regular basis. But I would recommend to water them only when it´s hot. No water on rainy or cold days and only water as soon as the soil has completely dried up! Trichocereus spachianus likes to be grown in partial shade but can also tolerate being grown in full sun. On the pics, you see that the plants are usually sown in full sun and they like it a lot. The flower is very large and beautiful, but the species needs to reach a certain size before it can flower.

Trichocereus spachianus

by Alan levine Echinopsis

by Dru Bloomfield Echinopsis_spachiana_(3)

by Gavin Anderson Echinopsis_spachiana_(3140270533)

by Dru Bloomfield Echinopsis_spachianaby Gavin Anderson Echinopsis_spachiana

by Ikiwaner Echinopsis

by Ikiwaner Echinopsis

by z2amiller Echinopsis_spachiana

by z2amiller Echinopsis_spachiana_(1)

by z2amiller Echinopsis_spachianaby z2amiller Echinopsis_spachiana

Cactus_en_flor
Soehrensia_spachiana Elia Scudiero

  Krzysztof Ziarnek, Kenraiz Echinopsis_spachianaSoehrensia_spachiana by Elia Scudiero

by Raphael Quinet Echinopsis_spachiana694700616_(1)

by Raphael Quinet Echinopsis_spachiana

trichocereus candicans var. robustior and trichocereus santiaguensis

On the right side, there is TRICHOCEREUS SANTIAGUENSIS. That is a very rare variety of Trichocereus Spachianus.

You can find out more about this species on our Facebook Group Facebook.com/groups/trichocereus and our Youtube Channel on Youtube.com/c/cactusjerk

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Trichocereus Mutants – Freaks, Crests, variegates, Monstrosa

Trichocereus bridgesii monstrosa

On this page, I will show a whole lot of pics of interesting Trichocereus Mutants, monstrosa, freaks, crests, variegates, variegata, mutants and such.

Photos of Trichocereus Mutants

TBM Trichocereus Brigesii Penis Plant Echinopsis lageniformis

In the front, you can see the classic TBM clone, an abbreviation for Trichocereus bridgesii monstrosa. This clone is also called Penis plant, Penis cactus, etc.

This clone has a very weird growth habit and produces small, penis-like pups that self-terminate and pup again after a while. There are two different types. One that only grows little pups and another one that can produce large columnar shoots, without producing these little “sausages”.

TBM Trichocereus Brigesii Penis Plant Echinopsis lageniformis 5

TBM Trichocereus Brigesii Penis Plant Echinopsis lageniformis 3

TBM Trichocereus Brigesii Penis Plant Echinopsis lageniformis 6

TBM Trichocereus Brigesii Penis Plant Echinopsis lageniformis 8

This one was sold as Trichocereus bridgesii v.inermis. It is the same clone as the TBM.

TBM Trichocereus Brigesii Penis Plant Echinopsis lageniformis 8

Trichocereus peruvianus variegata variegated mutant albino

This was sold as Trichocereus peruvianus variegata. It is grown in black plastic particles, which might sound like a good idea, but I feel like it´s not really something you should do because it´s not able to store nutrients. And god knows what other chemicals are in that plastic.

Trichocereus bridgesii monstrose monstrosa Echinopsis lageniformis

This is a very nice Trichocereus bridgesii monstrosa. It is similar to a type that Sacred Succulents encountered on one of their Field Trips to Peru

Trichocereus bridgesii crest crested cristata Philocacti Echinopsis lageniformis

Trichocereus bridgesii crest crested cristata Philocacti Echinopsis lageniformis 2

Trichocereus bridgesii crest crested cristata Philocacti Echinopsis lageniformis 5

Trichocereus bridgesii crest crested cristata Philocacti Echinopsis lageniformis 4

Trichocereus bridgesii crest crested cristata Philocacti Echinopsis lageniformis 6

The pics above were donated from Philocacti! It´s an amazing Trichocereus crest and I am very happy to share those pics with you!

The following pics are from Philocacti too. I know it´s a Lophophora monstrosa and is kinda off-topic but considering how rare and cool it is, I am happy to have it on the site. There are a couple more pics of this plant in the gallery below.

Lophophora williamsii cristata monstrosa trichocereus_net

Lophophora williamsii cristata monstrosa trichocereus_net 185

Lophophora williamsii cristata monstrosa trichocereus_net 48

Lophophora williamsii cristata monstrosa trichocereus_net 01

Trichocereus santiaguensis cristata monstrosa Echinopsis santiaguensis monstrose

Trichocereus pachanoi Altmans TPM monstrose cristat

Altman´s Trichocereus TPM clone

Trichocereus santiaguensis cristata monstrosa Echinopsis santiaguensis monstrose 2

Trichocereus pachanoi TPM Altmans Echinopsis monstrosa monstrose
Trichocereus pachanoi TPM Altmans Echinopsis monstrosa monstrose 3

Trichocereus pachanoi monstrosa – Could be the Altmans or the CCC clone but I am not sure.

Trichocereus pachanoi TPM Altmans Echinopsis monstrosa monstrose 4

Trichocereus pachanoi TPM Altmans Echinopsis monstrosa monstrose 5 cristat

Trichocereus peruvianus Echinopsis peruviana variegated variegata

This is an awesome Trichocereus Mutant that´s variegated

Matucana Divisonorum Variegated 2

This is a variegated Matucana. Just for the lulz.

Trichocereus peruvianus Variegated variegata
trichocereus echinopsis grandiflorus eyriesii cristate cristata

trichocereus echinopsis grandiflorus eyriesii cristate cristata 2


This is an Echinopsis eyriesii v. grandiflora cristata crest.

Trichocereus terscheckii cristata crest crested

Crested Trichocereus terscheckii. Labeled Candicans.

Trichocereus bridgesii Melty Crest Crested Echinopsis lageniformis

Trichocereus bridgesii – Melty Crest – Seems like Trichocereus bridgesii produces some of the most amazing Trichocereus mutants. So it´s always worth the try mass sowing them in order to get interesting seedlings.

Trichocereus peruvianus pachanoi Crest Crested TPM Altmans

trichocereus bridgesii melty crest Echinopsis lageniformis

Some more NON-Trichocereus Mutants & Monstroses

Cultivation of mutants: Most of these mutated or variegated cacti have very similar needs as their normal equivalents. Some of them might be more vulnerable to rot if the plant is a little bit weak. Especially with old seed or bad crosses, you can sometimes have plants that are genetically inferior to other cacti and tend to have all kinds of diseases. But apart from that, Crests, variegates or monstroses are usually not any worse than normal specimens. Because of that, it´s really sad to see that some growers tend to put them on the compost because they don´t want to have bad genetics in their collections. Not that this can´t also be the case, but I know plenty of collectors who pay a lot of money for mutants and appreciate them as much or even more as standard plants.
Now, some mutants tend to have trouble getting to flower, but that´s definitely not the case with every one of them. Maybe some of them are a little slower but you often see crested plants in nature, that produce pretty normal flowers. I guess it always comes down to the genetic health of the plant. And that can be totally different from plant to plant. I guess we all know those variegated Gymnocalycium that can´t survive if not grafted on something else. And personally, that´s where I draw the line because I don´t want to keep on grafting a plant that isn´t able to survive on it´s own. But yeah, everyone has his own likes and dislikes and if you have a cool mutant that you´d like to see on this page, please let me know or post it in our Trichocereus Facebook Group!

Check out our main plant database pages for Trichocereus pachanoi aka Echinopsis pachanoi here:

And Trichocereus bridgesii here:

Trichocereus scopulicola

Also check out our Trichocereus Facebook group here:

https://facebook.com/groups/trichocereus