|Fishhook Pincushion Cactus (Mammilaria grahamii)|
DESCRIPTION: Commonly 6" or less in height. Spines are so dense that it is difficult to see the stem body underneath. Central spines are often brown (versus white radial spines) and hooked. Flowers are pink (1" diameter) and grow in a ring just below the top of the cactus during the monsoon summer. Fruit are bright red (like those of Christmas Cholla).
NATURAL HISTORY: Flowers bloom about five days after the first summer rains and can produce two or three batches of flowers during the summer. This plants uses nurse plants to protect against frosts, harsh sun, trampling, etc. so one must look carefully under shrubs and trees to find them.