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Marcus, Joseph A.
Acanthocereus tetragonus (L.) Humm.
Triangle Cactus, Barbed-wire Cactus, Chaco
Synonyms: Acanthocereus floridanus Small ex Britton & Rose, Acanthocereus pentagonus (L.) Britton & Rose, Cactus tetragonus L., Cereus pentagonus (L.) Haw.
USDA Symbol: acte4
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Sprawling, clambering or arching-accumbent stems to several meters (up to 2m growth per year), Ribs are sharply-angled, usually 3 on mature stems, 4-5 on juvenile stems. Spiney. Spines variable, usually about 8 per areaole, 2.5-5cm long. Night-flowering, fully open flower 10-20cm in diameter, inner tepals are pure white, slightly fragrant. Fruits are shiny, red and sweet-tasting.
Triangle cactus has large, fragrant white blooms that open at night during the summer and attract hummingbird moths. This cactus is hardy to about 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Jul , Aug , Sep
Bloom Notes: Night-flowering, usually opening near midnight, closing at or about dawn. Flowers are large and slightly fragrant.
FL , TX Native Distribution:
Coastal areas of South Texas, Florida, West Indies, Mexico, Central America and northern South America. Native Habitat:
Thickets in sandy, coastal areas. USDA Native Status: L48(N), HI(I), VI(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low , Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry , Moist
Drought Tolerance: High
Heat Tolerant: yes
Soil Description: Sandy, moist soils.
Garden curiosity. Use Wildlife:
In Florida, endangered Key Largo woodrats eat the stems. Use Food: Fruit
is edible and sweet. Warning:
Painfully spiney plants. May be a garden aggressive. Conspicuous Flowers:
Butterflies Nectar Source:
Seeds , Semi-hardwood Cuttings Description:
May be propagated by seed or by stem
cuttings. Seed Collection:
Seed should be removed from fruit
pulp and thorougly dried before sowing.
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Record Modified: 2010-06-07
Research By: JAM