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Scientific: Echinopsis huascha (Synonyms: Cereus huascha, Trichocereus huascha, and Helianthocereus huascha)
Common: Red torch cactus
Family: Cactaceae
Origin: Argentina

Pronounciation: E-ki-NOP-sis ha-US-ka

Hardiness zones
USDA 9-11 (in semi arid and arid regions only)

Landscape Use: This is a spectacular accent cactus for xeric or desert gardens, container culture.

Form & Character: A more refined, smaller, cylindrical, columnar cactus, formal, structured.

Growth Habit: Slow-growing columnar cactus, cylindrical stems, basally branches, up to 3-feet tall with equal or greater spread.

Foliage/Texture: Elgongated, yet plump, light green ribbed stems, 2- to 3-inches wide, 12 to 18 ribs per stem. Areoles on ribs are white or yellow, spines similarly colored are clustered up to 10 per areole and are generally up to 2-inches long, some shorter; coarse texture.

Flowers & Fruits: Simply amazing large orange, red or pink trumpet like flowers, multilayered petals, yellow star like style and distinct yellow anthers on extended filaments; fruits oblong, reddish when mature.

Seasonal Color: Spring to early summer flowers, typically April in Phoenix. Flowers are nocturnal, opening in late evening and remaining open for only about 18 hours.

Temperature: Generally heat loving to 112oF (above this stems begin to show photo inhibition indirect injury - a yellowing), cold hardy to 15oF.

Light: Full sun

Soil: Like all cacti, red torch cactus needs good soil drainage and prefers rocky soil low in organic matter content.

Watering: Generally only infrequently apply supplemental water during the hottest times of the Phoenix summer.

Pruning: Only occasionally every few years remove any elongated cylindrical stems that slough off and trail onto the ground.

Propagation: Asexually by removal and rooting of basal stems segments. Allow stem segments to callus for several weeks before directly sticking into the soil.

Disease and Pests: Root rot in poorly drained soil.

Additional comments: This is an outstanding, small bunching and branching cactus for both informal and formal desert gardens. Echinopsis huascha var. macrantha has orange flowers. Echinopsis huascha var. rubra has red flowers. Echinopsis huascha var. grandiflora has white flowers. They're all incredibly cool!