Echinocereus: Cacti for cold climates

The cactus genus echinocereus is also known under the name hedgehog cactus . The name comes from the Greek word echinos meaning “hedgehog” and the Latin word cereus meaning “candle.”

The genus is popular among collectors of cacti for more reasons.

ech. reichenbachii

Pot friendly size

All echinocereus are smaller cacti. That makes them suitable for cultivation in pots.

echinocereus hybrid

Fine flowering properties

Cacti in general have beautiful flowers. Echinocerei has flowers that are longer lasting than flowers of other cacti. The flowers can last for about two weeks.

Many fruits are decorative red spiny spheres.


Winter hardy species

A few species are winter hardy in the garden in cold climates. They should be grown as solitaire plants on a sunny well-drained raised bed.

The 2 best winter hardy species are echinocereus coccineus and echinocereus viridiflorus.


Cold hardy species

More species can be grown all the year in an unheated greenhouse. The species mentioned in this website have survived winter temperatures down to -25ºC.

NB. Not all echinocerei are cold hardy.

Ech. hybrid


Various echinocereus are hybridizing in nature. Of course they hybridize a lot in a greenhouse collection. The hybrids are variable and often flower extremely rich. Hybrids with the winter hardy species are especially interesting.

ech. groups

Echinocereus groups

The echinocerei in this website are split up in groups.

See the groups here.


Grafting cacti

This image shows a grafted cactus. You can graft to increase growth of the scion.

Grafting will also give you a chance to save a cactus that you might loose due to some disease.

ech. coccineus

Other echinocereus websites

  1. German website 1
  2. German website 2
  3. German website 3
  4. English website
  5. American website 1
  6. American website 2
  7. Danish website


Print Friendly