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Mojave Mound Cactus, Giant Claret Cup, Salmon-flowered Hedgehog, Spiny Hedgehog
Echinocereus polyacanthus subsp. acifer

Family: Cactaceae (kak-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Echinocereus (ek-in-oh-KER-ee-us) (Info)
Species: polyacanthus subsp. acifer
Synonym:Echinopsis valida var. densa
Synonym:Echinocereus polyacanthus var. densus
Synonym:Cereus acifer
Synonym:Echinocereus acifer


Cactus and Succulents


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

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:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade


Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

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

Bloom Color:


Scarlet (Dark Red)


Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer



Other details:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

This plant may be considered a protected species; check before digging or gathering seeds

Suitable for growing in containers

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

From woody stem cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:

Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds

Unblemished fruit must be significantly overripe before harvesting seed; clean and dry seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Gardeners' Notes:


On May 27, 2007, Xenomorf from Valley of the Sun, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

This plant (and subspecies) can form clumps with as many as 400 heads
The 'polyacanthus' subspecies has smaller flowers being only 1.2 to 2.8 inches across. This is the most common of these subspecies.
The 'acifer' subspecies has scarlet red flowers that are 2.4 to 3.1 inches across and the stigma having 9 or 10 lobes.
The 'huitcholensis' subspecies has narrow salmon-pinkish orange blooms that are 1.8 to 3.1 inches across.
The 'pacificus' subspecies has smaller flowers than the other 3 subspecies being only 1.2 long and bright orange.