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PlantFiles: Turk's Cap Cactus
Melocactus azureus

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Family: Cactaceae (kak-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Melocactus (mel-oh-KAK-tus) (Info)
Species: azureus (a-ZOOR-ee-us) (Info)

Synonym:Melocactus azureus subsp. azureus
Synonym:Melocactus azureus var. azureus

2 members have or want this plant for trade.

Category:
Cactus and Succulents

Height:
under 6 in. (15 cm)
6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

Spacing:
15-18 in. (38-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

Hardiness:
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

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

Bloom Color:
Pink
Red

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer

Foliage:
Unknown - Tell us

Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

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:
Non-patented

Propagation Methods:
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

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There are a total of 9 photos.
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Profile:

2 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

RatingAuthorContent
Positive smurfwv On Oct 12, 2010, smurfwv from Cabin Creek, WV (Zone 6a) wrote:

I got one of these thinking it was going to be a large flowering variety, but once I found the name and did a search, I was very disappointed. I usually only collect large flowering cacti so this one will find a new home.

Positive palmbob On Apr 24, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Brazilian tropical cactus that has a surprising degree of cold hardiness in So Cal... in some areas it probably has to be grown under shade cloth if grown outdoors, at least in cooler winter areas, but in zone 9b and up, seems to do pretty well outdoors. I have had this plant living outdoors in Thousand Oaks for about 8 years where temps routinely dipped into the high and sometimes mid 20s and I haven't even seen cold damage to the plant. I is listed by most sources as a zone 11 plant, but i think that's being pretty pessimistic. Jan 07 freeze in southern California damaged all the Pilosocereus in the yard, destroyed LOTs of Euphorbias, Aloes and even Agaves, yet left his plant untouched.

Gets to a maximum of 8-12" (taller if you include the cephalium). If grown in warm climates in full sun has a bluish cast that fades with age and shade. But younger plants are can have an incredibly pale turquoise coloration that is a great color for landscaping.

Regional...

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

Reseda, California
Cabin Creek, West Virginia



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