Columnar cactus with bright green stems, usually very long and branched, which tend to mean over the years. The plants grow erect at first, with the years they stretch considerably bending, sometimes they tend to grow along supports, like tree trunks, or they fall back to the ground. They constitute real bushes; in summer they produce large greenish-white flowers, followed by roundish, fleshy, red fruits, covered with scales; the flesh is white and tender and is edible. There are about twelve species of acanthocereus, all originating in Central America, mainly found in the undergrowth or in the vegetation of coastal dunes.
These cacti prefer very bright areas, but they do not like direct sun for too many hours a day, so they should be placed in semi-shaded places that are hit by the sun only in the afternoon hours. They fear the cold, so in winter they should be placed in a tempered greenhouse or in places where the temperature does not fall below 10-12 ° C.
Compared to many other cacti, they like a little more water, which should be administered regularly from March to October, leaving the soil to dry between one watering and another. In winter, drastically reduce watering, until it is completely suspended in the coldest months, especially if the plant stays in unheated rooms. In the vegetative period, provide fertilizer for succulent plants dissolved in the water of the watering every 15-20 days.
The acanthocereus prefer very well drained, soft and sandy soils; use a special substrate for cactaceae mixed with small pieces of bark and leaf mold.
It can occur by seed, using the innumerable small seeds contained in the pulp of the fruit. These plants can be propagated very effectively even by taking the apical portions of the stems that easily root, in fact often the longer branches, falling, touch the ground and root, giving rise to a new plant.
Cereus - Acanthocereus: Pests and diseases
these plants fear water stagnation, which can cause root rot; sometimes they can be attacked by cochineal or red spider mite