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Loughmiller, Campbell and Lynn
Ferocactus hamatacanthus (Muehlenpfordt) Britt. & Rose
Turk's head, Turk’s head
Synonyms: Hamatocactus hamatacanthus
USDA Symbol: feha2
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
In its early stages of growth the Turks head is rather round, but it becomes columnar as it reaches maturity, about 8 inches tall and 8 inches in diameter. It usually has a single stem but occasionally will branch. It has 13–17 large, broad ribs with tubercles up to 2 inches high. Out of the tubercles grow 8–14 outer spines and 4–8 central ones, the lowest of which is extremely long, up to 6 inches, and hooked on the end.
The flowers are 2 1/2–4 inches tall almost as wide, and fragrant, though one should be steady on one’s feet when smelling them. There are up to 30 inner petals, which are long and wide, but pointed at the tip. They are yellow, sometimes red at the base. The pistils and the anthers are yellow. The pistils extend beyond the stamen.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Cactus/Succulent Size Notes:
Flower to 3 inches long
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug
Bloom Notes: Diurnal
NM , TX Native Distribution:
Along Rio Grande from mouth of Devils River to El Paso, TX. Also northern Mexico. USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Heat Tolerant: yes
Conditions Comments: Minimum temperature 45 F
BenefitUse Ornamental: Attractive, Blooms ornamental, Desert landscape
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Wildflower Center Seed BankLBJWC-PM-8
Collected 2010-07-02 in Presidio County by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
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Record Modified: 2008-10-10
Research By: TWC Staff