genus that includes 50-60 species of cacti, globular or briefly columnar originating from South America. The stem is generally dark green, characterized by numerous ribs and whitish areoles with white or greyish spines; most of these plants tend to produce numerous side shoots, so they often form very large groups. In summer almost all species produce numerous tubular flowers of considerable size, which can reach 15-20 cm in length, which bloom at night and fade in a few hours; the flower buds are covered with a characteristic greyish down. The echinopsis flowers are usually pink, white or red, but there are numerous hybrids between the species, or with lobivia species, so you can see cacti with yellow, orange or fuchsia flowers. E. subdenudata is a thorn-free species with pink flowers. E. backebergii has deep red flowers; E. bridgesii has white flowers and produces many buds, often with their own roots.
the echinopsis love very sunny positions, even exposed to the direct rays of the sun, in the summer months they develop without problems even in partial shade; they fear temperatures below 7-9 ° C, therefore in winter they must be protected from frost, taking them indoors or in a cold greenhouse; cold winters favor summer flowering.
for a correct development of the plant and an abundant flowering it is recommended to leave the soil completely dry from November to March, with the first warm days watering moderately; at the arrival of summer water abundantly every time the soil is dry; like other succulent plants the echinopsis prefer drought to the abundance of water, but they need watering in the period of greatest vegetative development; avoid water stagnation at any time of year, watering the plant only when the soil is well dry. From March to October, provide fertilizer for succulent plants, then low in nitrogen, every 10-15 days, mixed with the water used for watering.
they prefer slightly acid, loose, very well drained soils, consisting mainly of sand and lapillus, or other draining material.
in spring it is possible to sow the echinopsis in a mixture of sand and peat in equal parts, the seedbed must be kept in a damp, well-ventilated and shady place until the seeds are completely germinated. Many species of echinopsis produce numerous basal or lateral shoots, often provided with their own roots, which can be detached from the mother plant, of which they retain the characteristics, and planted in a single container.
Honeymoon - Echinopsis eryesii: Pests and diseases
excess watering can favor the onset of root rot; often these plants are attacked by fluffy cochineal, which frequently lurks in the interstices that are created between the mother plant and the shoots.