Octopus Cactus


Rathbunia alamosensis (Cactaceae) Collection: , U.S.A., New York Botanical Garden; flowering branch.
Artist: Eaton, Mary Emily – Date unknown – watercolor

Plate Number: 243
Publication: The Cactaceae Vol. 2 Pl 25, Fig 1
Client: Britton, N.L. and Rose, J.N. – Size: 11×14

From the Smithsonian Catalog of Botanical Illustrations

Currently known as Stenocereus alamosensis. The Rathbunia genus name is long gone, originally used in 1909, but superceded in 1979 by Stenocereus. The “Octopus Cactus” common name is shared with a few other plants that share it’s sprawly characteristics.

Shrubby, columnar plants, they spread outwards somewhat sinuously. The flowers are tubular red, as you can see. They will form 2″ red fruit, probably edible, probably called pitaya like the fruit from other Stenocereuses. Mexican, although the sample illustrated above was not geo-located.


    
    
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