Trichocereus

If you have a cactus plant and need help identifying it, this is the place to post it.
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vs1969
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jun 26, 2019 9:43 pm

Trichocereus

Post by vs1969 »

This beautiful cactus came to us late in life, from the person who did not know anything about it. The younger spines are yellow, the older ones are greyish-black. The flower has a strong tuberosa-like odor i.e. it is like the flower of T.pachanoi and others.

Is this T. litoralis? It looks somehow similar on some pictures, but not so similar on others. I also thought of T.chilensis, but the spines are different, and of T. candicans and T. spachianus, but they also do not quite fit, as to me.

The difference between old and new spination is remarkable, I did not see it much on the online pictures of others.
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phil_SK
Posts: 1747
Joined: Sat Oct 14, 2006 10:47 am
Location: Stockport, UK

Re: Trichocereus

Post by phil_SK »

The plants we've been calling Trichocereus all these years probably include three groups of plants that are fairly closely related but not each other's nearest and dearest. One group consists of fairly thin-stemmed plants that grow upright to several metres, often not very spiny, and with quite a low rib count - maybe 4 to 8 typically. Flowers are white. T. pachanoi and peruvianus are in this group. The second group of Chilean and western Argentinian plants are sometimes massive trees or big shrubs. They're spiny and the Chilean species in particular have some long, thick spines. Flowers tend to be a bit more tubular/less widely opening but still white. T. chiloensis (and its ssp litoralis and skottsbergii), pasacana, terscheckii, nigripilis belong here. The final, largest group are shrubby, often sprawling things with thin stems but occasionally barrel-shaped, lots of bristly spines on numerous ribs. Flowers often white but plenty are coloured, too. T. candicans, formosus, huascha, schickendantzii plus many others belong here.
Your plant is definitely in the third group. T. spachianus (if that's the right name for the plant we call T. spachianus) seems likely. The must less frequently-encountered T. strigosus could be a possibility.
Your plant has been neglected/bonsaied for possibly decades: the old bits of stem are very old, hence their very different spine colour. I would predict that it would take 15+ years for your new growth to get that dark. Once you've given it lots of tlc and got it growing properly again (a few years), it might be worth chopping a nice healthy piece of stem off and rooting it to restart the plant.
vs1969
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jun 26, 2019 9:43 pm

Re: Trichocereus

Post by vs1969 »

Thanks for the detailed answer! How old could it be?

Regarding the growth - the indication that it feels a bit better now is that the new growth is on the 5 out of 7 stems and when it came a year ago it was only on 2 (the flower photo is from 2018, it was almost all dark). So hopefully time and full sun will make it more or less happy.
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Aloinopsis
Posts: 600
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2019 2:49 pm

Re: Trichocereus

Post by Aloinopsis »

I also want to say thanks for that explanation. It's very helpful!
vs1969
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jun 26, 2019 9:43 pm

Re: Trichocereus

Post by vs1969 »

Just wanted to make an update. The plant grew a lot over the last years (unfortunately, without more flowers), now it looks quite differently. Based on the second plant which I got in the meantime with very similar spination and precise identification, I now believe it is Trichocereus camarguensis.

Trichocereus camarguensis.jpg
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