Guamishi (Ferocactus histrix)

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Guamishi
Give a thumbs up Biznaga
Give a thumbs up Guamichi
Give a thumbs up Electrode Cactus
Give a thumbs up Ferocactus

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Cactus/Succulent
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Plant Spread: 32 inches
Fruit: Dehiscent
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Yellow
Underground structures: Taproot
Suitable Locations: Xeriscapic
Edible Parts: Fruit
Eating Methods: Raw
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Drought tolerant
Pollinators: Bees
Containers: Needs excellent drainage in pots
Miscellaneous: Tolerates poor soil
With thorns/spines/prickles/teeth

Young plant, 6 years after purchase. Donated to a botanical garde

This plant is tagged in:

Posted by Baja_Costero (Baja California - Zone 11b) on May 24, 2019 3:14 PM

Broadly distributed, solitary, highly ornamental blue-green barrel cactus to 32 inches wide from central-eastern Mexico with depressed, wooly centers; 20-40 (or more) ribs; and straight or slightly curved yellowish spines (1-4 central spines per areole). Yellow, bell-shaped flowers lead to fleshy, juicy fruit which often dehisces to release seeds. Slow growing but not particularly difficult from seed. The time required to reach sexual maturity may be on the order of decades.

DNA analysis has placed this species close to F. glaucescens.

Well known in Mexico, along with Echinocactus platyacanthus, as a source of acitrĂ³n (or dulce de biznaga), a popular candy made from the body of the plant after adding sugar and boiling for a day or so. This crystallized candy is traditionally served with rosca de reyes in early January, as well as with other rituals. This has led to massive depopulation as wild cacti were harvested for this use. The production of acitrĂ³n is now regulated and supposedly limited to cultivated plants, though wild (illegal) harvesting goes on. The fruit (which goes by various names including borrachito or guamishi, spelled different ways) is delicious and fleshy, eaten raw or used to produce sweet or fermented beverages. Mature buds (cabuches) are also cooked and eaten.

[ Reply to this comment | Give a thumbs up ]

Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
New plants and an id by skopjecollection Dec 31, 2018 4:03 AM 3
Cactus and succulents chat by Baja_Costero Jan 17, 2020 12:11 AM 6,319

« Add a new plant to the database

« The Plants Database Front Page

Today's site banner is by mmolyson and is called "Moss Phlox Phlox subulata"

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.