Argentine Giant Cactus – Echinopsis candicans Description
Echinopsis candicans (argentine giant cactus) is a clump-forming columnar cactus that tends to lean or sprawl. It forms pups from the base and can create a large clump over time. Its cylindrical, light green stems, 5-7 in. across (12-18 cm), bear 9-11 ribs lined with large white-felted areoles, spaced up to 1 in. apart (2.5 cm), and packed with 10-14 yellowish radial spines and a central spine. Large, strongly fragrant, funnel-shaped, bright white flowers, 8 in argentine giant cactus . across (20 cm), adorned with yellow centers, are produced in late spring. Echinopsis candicans is a night flowering species, with its blooms opening at night and closing in the early hours of the day. The blossoms can stay open for two or more days if the weather is cool or cloudy. Easy to grow, Argentine Giant is reported to be cold-hardy down to 17°F (-8°C) for short periods. It adds long-lasting beauty to the landscape and is perfect for use in rock gardens, planted in groups in dry and sunny areas of the garden and in succulent or cactus gardens.
Description: Trichocereus candicans, formerly Trichocereus candicans, is a clump-forming cactus that resembles the ‘torch cactus’ but not as tall and does not stand as straight. It tends to lean on one side and forms pups from the base and on the other side. It eventually forms a large clump 1 to 3 m across.
Stem: Cylindrical erect or usually spreading rounded apicallly 12-18 cm across and 40-60(-100) cm long. The stem is medium green in colour on the shaded side and yellowish green on the sun baked side argentine giant cactus .
Ribs: 9-11, obtuse, usually low.
Areoles: Large white, 2-3 cm apart.
Spines: Yellowish to brownish-yellow , somewhat mottled awl shaped.
Central spines: Numerous up to 10 cm long (but usually less).
Radial spines: 10-12 unequal, spreading up to 4 cm long.
Flower: Showy, funnelform, bright white on the inside with yellow centers and pinkish on the outside, very large 18-25 cm from top to bottom and 11-19 cm across, scales on flower tube ovate, acuminate, bearing long hairs in their axils. They can be profuse. The fragrance of the flowers is very strong–perhaps one of the strongest in the cacti family. The flowers are nocturnal begins to open near sundown and close in the mid afternoon. It can stay open for two or more days if the weather is cool and/or cloudy argentine giant cactus .
Fruit: Globose to ovoidal, dehiscent, splitting on one side.
Blooming season: It usually blooms in late spring, but can be a early as mid March, and sometimes in September.
- Grows up to 24 in. tall (60 cm). Will eventually form a large clump 3-10 ft. across (90-300 cm).
- Easily grown in fertile, well-drained soils in full sun. Welcomes some light shade during hot summers since this cactus is subject to sun burning. Water well in the spring and summer, but allow to dry fully before watering again. Do not water in winter. Drought tolerant argentine giant cactus .
- Fertilize monthly with a balanced fertilizer during the growing season.
- Great for desert gardens, rock gardens, succulent gardens or Mediterranean gardens.
- Propagate by seed or stem cuttings.
- Virtually pest and disease free. Susceptible to fungal diseases if over-watered.
- Native to Argentina.
Native to Argentina, around the Monte Desert, the Argentine Giant is named for its nativity and how big it can get. During the late spring or early summer argentine giant cactus, the Argentine Giant will bloom. The giant fragrant white flowers open at night and usually last about 24 hours. The Argentine Giant prefers being planted in the full sun but will tolerate being planted in light shade. So full to partial sun is the best for its growth argentine giant cactus. The Argentine Giant usually propagates by cuttings or seeds. While it looks dangerous, the Argentine Giant is a gorgeous example of desert wildlife and is a fantastic addition to any desert style landscape. As you might imagine handling this can be tricky, so make sure to have us plant this one!