|Full Description: Cactus species Espostoa lanata a columnar cactus type tree up to 15' ft.+ (5 m) high in the wild and slightly shorter in cultivation. Trunk diameter 2" to 4-1/2"+ (5 to 12 cm) in diameter, with 20 to 25 ribs flattened obscured by tissue woolly. The white cover is due to long fuses back. The central sharp goads sometimes cross the wool up to 2 inches long. Older plants have a cephalium on the side from which appear nocturnal white to purplish flowers, resulting fruit is edible. Makes an attractive drought tolerant landscape plant in frost free locations.
Synonyms : Cactus lanatus, Cereus lanatus, Pilocereus dautwitzii, Cereus sericatus, Espostoa laticornua, Espostoa procera
Common Names : Cotton Ball Cactus, Peruvian Old Man, Snowball Cactus
Native to : Southern Ecuador to northern Peru, habitat is primarily on the western facing slopes of the Andes mountain range.
Flowers and Fruit : Flowers average 2" diameter and are white to purplish colored, nocturnal flowers emerge from the beard like cephalium or whooly clumps. Fruit is spherical in shape and approx. 1" inch long and in diameter, purplish-red, very juicy, sweet and edible. The colorful fruit emerge from the woolly mass of the lateral cephalium and are very colorful.
The very small seeds inside the fruit flesh are black colored and shining.
More info. : The Genus or family of Espostoa was named after Nicolas Esposto, who was a Peruvian botanist.
Espostoa lanata is wide spread in in habitat and quite variable in size and length of spines so for this reason it has received several names.
Espostoa is a genus of columnar cacti, comprising 16 species known from the Andes of southern Ecuador and Peru. It usually lives at an altitude of between 800m and 2500m. Its fruit is edible, sweet, and juicy.
The candle-like cacti of the Espostoa genus are covered with thorns and white hair. Only the older specimens can divide.
In adulthood, a cephalium sometimes appears, similar to the Mexican genus Cephalocereus.
They were discovered by Alexander von Humboldt and Aimé Bonpland in the early nineteenth century.
Care : Regular water in summer, fast draining soil, full sun, keep above freezing, protect from frost, established plants have been known to tolerates down to 25°F but only for very brief periods. Little or no water in winter, rot prone in winter so keep on dry side in winter. Can be container grown or ground planted in frost free areas.
Offered as : A small cutting to all mail order locations. Larger rooted plant(s) are available for mail order within the U.S. only, or for pick up. See link below for info. about our walk in nursery.
( Below are more pictures of Espostoa Lanata showing close ups of cephalium; apex, side and a typical stem growth examples ).
Established 5 gallon rooted plant(s) up to larger specimen multi-plant(s) may also be available for shipping within the U.S. only or for pick-up as most are very large, so sorry but no international shipping of large plants.
Simply click the link below for info. about our walk-in nursery website, or to check availability and place an order with one of our friendly sales reps. today !