Puna subterranea forma incahuasii
This is a pretty form with
with greener and thinner stems that clumps prufusely and may
forms large clumps with more than 100 heads. The flowers are bright
purple and very showy.
Puna subterranea (R. E. Fries)
CITES Appendix II
Distribution: Incahusi peak on the Chile-Argentina border.
derives from the
indicate the western region up to 4500 m that extends from the Peru,
going throughout Bolivia to the Argentinean North. Delimited at
west by a costal chain of high volcanic picks
and by the Cordillera mountainous chain to the east. The Argentinean
Puna is the natural continuation of the
- Maihuenopsis subterranea (R. E.
Fries) E. F. Anderson 1999
- Opuntia subterranea R. E. Fries 1905
- Pseudotephrocactus subterraneus (R. E. Fries)
- Tephrocactus subterraneus (R. E. Fries) Backeberg
- Cumulopuntia subterranea (R. E. Fries) F. Ritter
- Puna variiflorus
- cactus variflorus Backeberg 1962 (non val.
subterranea is a small plant
with very tuberous root which in remains half buried in habitat, showing
approximately 1 cm. from the ground. Plants have usually few segments
(up to 6). But at the northern localities this species can grow with
dozends of segments.
The form "incahuasii" with greener and thinner stems
forms large clumps with more than 100 heads.
This species is very variable and there are many forms of Puna
It looks like a small Tephrocactus, but the
fruit and the
seeds clearly show its autonomous nature.
Stem: Grayish-green, to brownish, round in cross section,
elongate, up to 6 cm wide and (but usually less around 15-18 mm in
diameter) and 2-4 cm tall. The stems reduces greatly in volume during
the dry season often retracting the plant underground.
Roots: This plant has deep tuberous roots with only 1 to 3 cm
growing above ground level.
Spines: 1 to 7(-10) pectinated, more or less bent toward the
Glochids: None or few in the basal areoles about 1 mm long.
Leaves: The leaves are very small and fall off early.
Flowers: The blossoms 2,5 to 3 cm. long have a larger diameter
than the segments is one of the reasons why Puna subterranea
sometimes is named 'Rebutia of the Opuntias'. At North of Argentina the
colour of the blossoms is rather variable; each specimen seem to show a
different colour. The flower colour ranges from brown to deep rose red
to a pale yellowish rose and rare, but possible with almost white.
Pericarpels without areoles but with a few scales bearing hairs and long
bristles in the axils. The flowers of the form "incahuasii"
are a deep purple and very showy.
Blooming: Time The flowering is diurnal and takes place during
Fruit: Globose, 12-15 mm in diameter, dry indehiscent (it cannot
open by itself)
Seed: 4 mm large covered with a tender arillum.
Growing tips: This species
resists cold well if it is dry and need to be kept in
a cool place during
winter rest (this is important for the flowers as well as for their
health) Without this cool winter period they normally wont get many
mountain cactus - because of the
taproot - necessitate deep
and a well
mineral potting mix. They
overwatering, but need enough water during
vegetation. Requires full sun. Specimens in culture, in
special grafted ones, presents a bigger amount of glochids than the ones
growing in their habitat. Need a sufficient
amount of air.
Usually propagated by
grafting . Grafted plants in culture are most common and sprout
strongly. But it is also feasible
to root them but they grow much slower on their own roots and takes
various years prior to they
Photo of conspecific taxa, varieties, forms and
cultivars of Puna