SETIECHINOPSIS

http://seedscactus.com/1228-thickbox_default/setiechinopsis-mirabilis.jpg
http://seedscactus.com/1228-thickbox_default/setiechinopsis-mirabilis.jpg

Autor: (Backeberg) De Haas

• ETYMOLOGY
“Echlnopsls with bristles”, because the genus has a floral tube covered with characteristic bristles.
• DESCRIPTION
A monotypic genus of small plants with a short life cycle (3-5 years, not much more), usually solitary (sometimes branched), with a short, thick taproot and fine secondary roots. Stem cylindrical, strongly pigmented, brownish or purplish green towards blackish. 11-12 low, straight ribs, areoles covered with white wool. 9-14 straight radial spines, 1 longer and stiffer central spine, finely pubescent.
Flowers nocturnal, self-fertile, appearing around the apex, closely funnel-shaped, with a very long and fine scaly floral tube, covered with hairs and bristles, petals acuminate, white, strongly scented, pollinated by moths with a long proboscis (Manduca sexta). Fruits fusiform (spindle-shaped), longitudinally dehiscent, drying when ripe, floral remains persistent. Seeds globose more or less elongated, dull, tuberculate, dark brown, covered with mucilage.
• HABITAT
The monotypic genus Setiechinopsis grows in an atypical area for cacti: saline areas, brackish lands, under low shrubs (Atriplex), in grasslands, at the foot of mountains, from 200 m up to 1250m in altitude.
• DISTRIBUTION
Argentina (Catamarca, La Rioja, Mendoza, San Juan, San Luis, Santiago del Estero).

Currently only one recognised species:
– Setiechinopsis mirabilis* (Spegazzini) De Haas (1940)

References: "TAXONOMY of the CACTACEAE" -  ISBN 978-84-617-3692-8 (Vol. 2)

 

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