A. ornatum is a shortly columnar cactus appearing star-shaped
from above, with white cross bands of
wooly scales. It appears to be
a very variable
species especially for the density and distribution of white scales.
the largest and easiest to grow and also the fastest of the Astrophytums.
It is also generally more heavily spined than other Astrophytums.
globose when young ,
cylindric with age, 30 to 120 cm (or more) high, 15-30 cm across,
greyish-green to dark-green with more or less dense white or yellow
wooly flakes in bands forming an ornate pattern.
Ribs: It has 5 to 10 (generally 8) straight or frequently
spiralling, rather prominent, strongly compressed, more or less
Areoles: 1 to 5 cm apart, at first yellowish-white
Radial spines: 5-11 stout, 2-4 cm long usually straight,
subulated or ± laterally compressed, amber yellow, later brown and
Central spine. usually 1 rather larger.
Flowers: At apex, large, lemon-yelllow 7-12 cm broad, inner
perianth segments broadly oblong, with a broad, more or less serrated
apex, tube short woolly, scale on ovary, dark and very narrow.