Rat-tail Cactus, Rattail Cactus, Flor de Látigo, Floricuerno, Junco, Junquillo, Nopalillo

Disocactus flagelliformis

Family: Cactaceae (kak-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Disocactus (dy-soh-KAK-tus) (Info)
Species: flagelliformis (fla-gel-ih-FOR-miss) (Info)
Synonym:Aporocactus flagelliformis
Synonym:Aporocactus flagriformis
Synonym:Aporocactus leptophis
Synonym:Cereus flegelliformis
Synonym:Cereus flagriformis


Cactus and Succulents

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Where to Grow:

Suitable for growing in containers

This plant is suitable for growing indoors


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


3-6 in. (7-15 cm)


USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Late Winter/Early Spring


Unknown - Tell us

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Tucson, Arizona

Brea, California

Carlsbad, California

Clovis, California

Mountain View Acres, California

Perris, California

Pleasant Hill, California

Reseda, California

San Diego, California

San Jose, California

San Mateo, California

Valley Village, California

Nederland, Colorado

Brooksville, Florida

Tallahassee, Florida

Chicago Heights, Illinois

Mercer, Pennsylvania

Summerville, South Carolina

Broaddus, Texas

Dallas, Texas

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Aug 25, 2014, vnes from San Jose, CA wrote:

When I saw a photo of this cactus in bloom, I just had to have one. It's doing great hanging on my covered porch here in San Jose, Ca. Some of the "tails" have grown to about three feet long! looking forward to it blooming again next year.


On Jul 21, 2013, marino760 from Victorville, CA wrote:

This plant makes a great low maintenance hanging basket for desert or hot summer areas. The blooms in the spring are a great extra, but even without the blooms, it's a very interesting plant that provides something other than just green foliage. It's much more cold tolerant than stated here. I live in zone 8b and it survived temps of 14 degrees last winter with some die back but it bounced right back in the spring.


On Jan 13, 2007, tcfromky from Mercer, PA (Zone 5a) wrote:

As houseplant here of course. A friend of mine gave me a little nubbin less than a half inch long. I have it in a sunny spot in a little clay pot with a piece of clear plastic covering it, kind of like a mini greenhouse. I hope it anchors and grows.


On Apr 21, 2006, Xenomorf from Valley of the Sun, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

More synonyms of this plant are Aporocactus flagelliformis var. leptophis, Cactus flagelliformis, and Cereus leptophis.


On Feb 12, 2006, morlie_ from Abbotsford, BC (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is by far the ugliest plant that I own. But... the most hardy, so I gave it the neutral rating. My mother gave this to me a few years ago, and it was almost dead. Now it is thriving in all of it's ugly glory. I'm not sure that it is warm enough here in winter, so the tails all go fat, skinny, fat, dead, skinny, dead, fat, etc.. And now this winter only it has started producing very skinny little tails that are sticking straight up from the soil level. And it has the beginnings of it's first flower! If I didn't have sentimental attachment it would have been gone long ago, as I believe it needs a more consistently warm climate.


On Mar 25, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is a popular trailing cactus- great for hanging baskets. Develops long, trails of 1/2" (2cm) diameter cactus that blooms a hot pink flower in early spring (at least here in California).