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Ferocactus echidne (A. P. de Candolle) Britton & Rose 1922

Sonora barrel

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassMagnoliopsidaDicotyledons—plants with two initial seed leaves
SubclassCaryophyllidaeCacti, many other succulents, carnivorous plants, and leadworts
OrderCaryophyllalesIncludes cacti, carnations, amaranths, ice plants, and many carnivorous plants
FamilyCactaceaeSucculent (water-storing) plants, often spiny
GenusFerocactusFrom the Latin ferus, “fierce,” and cactus, referring to its heavy spines

About plant names...

Ferocactus echidne is native to central Mexico.

Identification: Plants are gray-green, up to 1′ (35 cm) high and up to 8″ (20 cm) in diameter, singly- or multiply-stemmed, with 13-16 prominent ribs. A central spine up to 1¾″ (5 cm) long is surrounded by 7-9 shorter spines; spines are light to dark brown. Yellow, funnel-shaped flowers ¾-1¾″ (2-4.5 cm) long and 1-1¼″ (3-3.5 cm) around appear in the center of the top of each stem. Fruits are up to ¾″ (2 cm) long, oval or ball-shaped, light green or white, tinged with pink or red.


Anderson, Edward F., The Cactus Family, Timber Press, 2001, p. 328

Online References:




Wikimedia Commons

The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources Red List of Threatened Species

Echinocactus echidne A. P. de Candolle 1834

Echinocactus victoriensis (Rose) Backeberg 1961

Ferocactus echidne var. victoriensis (Rose) G. E. Lindsay 1955

Echinocactus rafaelensis J. A. Purpus 1912

Ferocactus rafaelensis (J. A. Purpus) Borg 1937

Ferocactus rhodanthus Fritz Schwartz 1979


Ferocactus echidne description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.

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Ferocactus echidne (Sonora barrel)

4/6/2011 · Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory & Botanic Gardens, Druid Hill Park, Baltimore, Mary­land · ≈ 2 × 1′ (62 × 41 cm)

Range: Zones 9b-11:

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