Pronounciation: Sten-o-CAC-tus mul-ti-co-STA-tus
Landscape Use: Small rock gardens, cactus gardens, container plant, raised planters.
Form & Character: Solitary, rounded, delicate, but not inviting, interesting, but not touchable.
Growth Habit: Very slow growing to 6 to 10 inches in height, small, and diminutive barrel cactus, sometimes growing a few offshoots with age.
Foliage/texture: Small barrel cactus with tightly packed, wavy ridges, aeroles contain short white spines; coarse texture.
Flowers & fruits: Cultivar 'Zacatecasensis' has small, star-shaped white to pink flowers, each petal has a brownish-purple stripe, flowers of regular species are pink; fruit inconspicuous.
Seasonal color: None
Temperature: Hardy to 15oF
Light: Full to partial sun, no shade.
Soil: Well drained, alkaline soil is best.
Watering: Needs little to no supplemental water.
Propagation: Seed, not known to be self fertile.
Disease and pests: Root rot in poorly drained soil.
Additional comments: Brain cactus is weird looking, a real oddity plant for creating interest in small Phoenix cactus gardens. The genus Stenocactus contains 10 species and is closely related to Ferrocactus.