Stenocereus pruinosus Species
Cactus species Stenocereus pruinosus is a large columnar tree like cactus with grey-green colored stem growth. Individual stems average 6 to 10 deep ribs, aerioles run along the rib edges and have from 1 to 4 central spines and 5 to 8 radials spines, brownish-red on new growth later turning greyish in color.Stenocereus Pruinosus can grow up to 20 ft. tall, solitary columnar when young but often branches from or near the base. Makes an attractive drought tolerant landscape plant. This species also produces edible reddish fruit about the size of a small apple.
Common names : Gray Ghost Organ Pipe Cactus, Pitayo, pitayo de Octubre.
Synonyms : Echinocactus pruinosus, Cactus pruinosus, Cereus pruinosus, Lemaireocereus pruinosus, Ritterocereus pruinosus, Rathbunia pruinosa.
Native to : Mexico in these locals; Chiapas, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Puebla, Tamaulipas, Veracruz-(In more arid parts).
Flower/ Fruit : The flowers are white with some light pink and cream anthers, funnel shaped, approx. 3" in diameter. The blooms open at night (nocturnal) staying open into daytime. Blooming occurs from spring to early summer followed by reddish colored fruit by October. The fruit exterior has many small spines on the exterior, but most of the spines usually fall off by harvest time when fruit turns reddish in October.
Care : Give ample water in summer for fast growth, but can be drought tolerant once well established. Very little water required in winter when semi-dormant below 75 degree average temps. Suitable for frost free areas, can take 32 degrees for very brief periods but as the apex indents or is flat if any frost/snow sits on top of stems slight damage can occur, if for prolonged periods or at even lower temps more severe damage will occur. Recommended for zones 9-a and up or grow indoors/protected in winter. Give semi-rich good draining soil. Full sun.