Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Gymnocalycium
Gymnocalycium stenopleurum

Family: Cactaceae (kak-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Gymnocalycium (jim-no-kal-LISS-ee-um) (Info)
Species: stenopleurum (sten-oh-PLOOR-um) (Info)

Synonym:Gymnocalycium friedrichii
Synonym:Gymnocalycium mihanovichii var. friedrichii

Cactus and Succulents

under 6 in. (15 cm)

3-6 in. (7-15 cm)
6-9 in. (15-22 cm)

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:
Sun to Partial Shade
Light Shade

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

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer


Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
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 seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse
From seed; direct sow after last frost

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

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There are a total of 11 photos.
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1 positive
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive RxAngel On May 10, 2011, RxAngel from Stratford, TX (Zone 6b) wrote:

Gorgeous little barrel-type cactus; unusual coloring, brownish to greenish-purple to dark grape, with bands. Gorgeous flowers, with unusual and cute flower buds.

From :

Gymnocalycium mihanovichii v. friedrichii is a beautiful small globular cactus from Paraguay. Globular stem typically has 8 or more deep ribs, forming sharp angles. Color of stems varies from greenish-purple to a dark grape color, and sometimes has crossbands of lighter color. Pink or white flowers appear first in March, and continue for many months. A variant of this plant, known as 'Hibotan', is well-known as the grafted "Moon Cactus". This variant form occurs when the plant lacks chlorophyll and its color manifests as beautiful yellows, pinks, oranges, reds or combinations of these colors. An excellent subject for windowsill culture. Requires porous cactus soil with adequate drainage. Prefers filtered light or shade. Water thoroughly when soil is dry to the touch. Protect from frost.

Neutral palmbob On Feb 27, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Easy plant outdoors in California- grows in sun, shade, sans water, and with generous water... tends to look a tad shrunken most of the time.


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

Phoenix, Arizona
Queen Creek, Arizona
Brea, California
Deer Park, Texas
Houston, Texas

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