The plant is usually unbranched forming a single column up to 2m tall
and 30cm in diameter. The ribs are 2.5cm high and tuberculate.
A large central spine and three auxiliary centrals form a crucifix
shape, The primary central is 5 to 7cm, angles down and is slightly to
moderately hooked, sometimes to 90 degrees. The other centrals are from
5 to 7.5 cm long. The centrals are noticeably annularly ridged and
flattened with a flat upper surface and rounded lower surface. Spines
can be very light grey to red and yellow but darken to black with age.
Flowers: Yellow flowers tinged with red appear in May and June at
the crown of the plant, 4 to 6cm. The fruit with scales is fleshy,
yellow or yellowish green 5cm long, 2.5cm in diameter
Taxonomy note: F.
acanthodes is differentiated between variety
lecontei with a central spine 5-7 cm in length, and variety
acanthodes with a central spine 7-15 cm in length. The former grows
at higher elevations 700-1500 m in elevation, while the latter usually
inhabits the 50-700 m elevational range.
full sun, Will take some frost.
Seeds are the only way of reproducing.
Photo of conspecific
taxa, varieties, forms and cultivars of
Ferocactus acanthodes var. lecontei
G. Lindsay 1955
Origin: The various variety of F. acanthodes are
spread across central and western Arizona, southeastern California and
southwards into Baja California and Sonora, Mexico
Habitat: This cactus is locally abundant in arid gravelly or rocky
foothills, canyon walls, fans and wash margins at 600 to 1250m elevation
among creosote bush scrub, it also utilizes slopes and Acid Igneous rock
lands. The species is limited in its northwards range by frost
conditions. To reduce the damage by frost the plant is found on south
facing slopes and it leans to the south to protect the sensitive growing
tip by placing it for best exposure to the sun .
Conservation status: Listed in
CITES appendix 2.
- Echinocactus wislizenii var. lecontei
- Ferocactus cylindraceus
var. lecontei Taylor 1979
Ferocactus cylindraceus var. lecontei
(Engelm.) Bravo 1980
Ferocactus cylindraceus subsp.
(Engelm.) N.P.Taylor 1998
F. acanthodes lecontei grows slowly forming in age a narrow column up to