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  Sulcorebutia tiraquensis
(Syn: Sulcorebutia steinbachii)

Cultivation and Mail Sale
of Cacti and Succulents.


Sulcorebutia tiraquensis (v. bicolorispina f. comachoi) KK1801
Epizana to Siberia, Bolivia Altitude: 3000m

Description: S. tiraquensis is a clustering species (rarely solitary) readily forming, especially in cultivation, clumps of many heads. The stems are almost completely concealed by fine variously coloured spines.
Stem: Soft globular,  flattened and somehow apically depressed,
greysh-green to dark green sometime very dark magenta-green.
Ribs: 12-26
, spiralling, forming oblong rhomboid tubercles with well-defined grooves.
Areoles: Elongated
with short grey felt (almost naked) 3 – 6 long, 1,5-2 mm large.
Roots: Mostly non-succulent, fibrous roots. More than 90% of the plant is concentrated in the stem.
Radial spines: 12-13 dense, erect,
thin, bristle-like and flexible, white, yellowish, brownish, reddish or mahogany red with darker tips The spines are often absent in new areoles and slow to develop.
Central spines: 1-3 often absent, stouter becoming whitish with age.

Arising from monoflorous areoles, in lower lateral flower zone. Rarely more than 3,5 cm long and 4,5 in diameter. Bright pink to light purple, numerous in a ring at the base of the plant.
Blooming season: April - May and remain open for up to five days.
Small papery olive green to reddish brown at maturity.
Seeds: Black.



This species loves a very permeable, coarse mineral soil  as well as to be strictly kept dry throughout  the winter quiescent period since it is very sensitive to any moisture excesses, To prevent rottenness it is also advisable to surround its root neck by very rough sand or grit, this help a fast water drainage and an appropriate air circulation. Plants are quite frost hardy -5 (-10)° C
Watering Needs: Water moderately in the growing season, keep dry during  the winter rest
Frost Tolerance: 
Overwinter  in a cool place (at 0/10°C)  this is important for the flowers as well as for plants health. Without this cool winter period they normally wont get any buds. Sun Exposure: Needs a full sun exposure ( light shadow my be useful in the hottest summer days)

Propagation: Seed, cutting, grafting


Photo gallery: Alphabetical listing of Cactus and Succulent pictures published in this site.

Photo gallery SULCOREBUTIA



Family: Cactaceae (Cactus Family)

Sulcorebutia tiraquensis

Accepted Scientific Name:
Sulcorebutia steinbachii (Werderman) Backeberg 1951

North and east of Cochabamba in the Cordillera de Cochabamba, in southern Bolivia.  Sulcorebutia is the type species of the genus  Sulcorebutia.  The first plants were collected near Colomi, along the route from Cochabamba to Chapare, by a Herr Steinbach.

Habitat: Grows mainly on a flat, dry, stony area along the banks of the Rio Lopez, just before the moister zone of the tiraquensis populations.

Conservation status: Listed in CITES Appendix II.

Etymology: Named for its occurrence near Tiraque, Prov. Carrasco, Dept. Chochabamba, Bolivia.


  • Rebutia tiraquensis Cárdenas 1957
  • Sulcorebutia tiraquensis (Cárdenas) F. Ritter 1961
  • Weingartia tiraquensis (Cárdenas) F.H.Brandt 1977
  • Rebutia steinbachii ssp. tiraquensis (Cárdenas) Gertel 1996 Not validly published
  • Rebutia steinbachii ssp. tiraquensis (Cárdenas) D.R.Hunt 1997
  • Rebutia steinbachii Werderman 1931
  • Sulcorebutia steinbachii (Werderman) Backeberg 1951
  • Weingartia steinbachii (Werderman) F.H.Brandt 1977

NOTE: Sulcorebutia steinbachii
is one of the most variable cactus species. The colour of the flower, the spines length, the body shape and pigmentation is extremely variable, even within a population. There are also many localized phenotypes capable of maintaining their separate identity, even though only a few kilometers apart and by former authors considered as separated species and varieties. They are nowadays considered just phenotypes of a highly polymorphic specie. These subpopulations are not only morphologically based but also geographically and can be grouped as follow:

Group 1a: Cochabamba to Chapare, northward and eastward to Tiraque

  • Sulcorebutia glomerispina
  • S. tuberculato-chrysantha
  • S. polymorphaS. kruegeri
  • S. hoffmannianaS. glanduliflora Card. n.n.
  • S. cochabambina
  • S. steinbachii & vars. australis, gracilior, etc.A

Group 1b: Province Tiraque to Epizana an eastward to Comarapa, 2,800 m-3.000 m.

  • Sulcorebutia tiraquensis & vars. longiseta
  • S. spinosior & aglaia (bicolorispina)
  • S. lepida
  • S. krahnii

Group 2: Cerro Tunari-south and east of Cochabamba-Izata to Anzaldo, 3,400-3,900 m

  • Sulcorebutia verticillacantha
  • S. tunariensis
  • S. taratensis & var. minima
  • S. mizquensis
  • S. pojoniensis Rausch n.n.A

Group 3: West of Cochabamba-Ayopaya, 2,000-2,500 m

  • Sulcorebutia arenacea
  • S. candiae
  • S. menesesii & vars. kamiensis
  • S. muschii
  • S. glomeriseta

Group 4: Around Totora and southward toward Epizana, 2,600-3,000 m

  • Sulcorebutia oenantha
  • S. totorensis
  • S. pampagrandensis

Group 5: A limited area around Pasopaya and eastwards, 2,000 m

  • Sulcorebutia cardenasiana
  • S. langeri

Photo of conspecific taxa, varieties, forms and cultivars of plants belonging to the Sulcorebutia steinbachi complex
(This Taxon has lots of synonyms whit several controversial varieties and subspecies and comprises a multitude of different forms, but where each form is linked to others by populations of plants with intermediate characteristics):

Home | E-mail | Plant files | Mail Sale Catalogue | Links | Information | Search

All the information and photos in cactus art files are now available also in the new the Enciclopedia of Cacti. We hope you find this new site informative and useful.