Ferocactus cylindraceus ssp. cylindraceus
"Compass Barrel"

     Native to California, Arizona and northern Mexico, Ferocactus cylindraceus is a magnificently spined barrel cacti to 14 inches wide and 8 feet tall. It's known as a Compass Barrel because the northern side, away from the sun, grows faster than the southern side. So eventually it will lean toward the south. Spine color varies widely from variety to variety and even within the same populations. They range from red to yellow or straw colored. Flowers can be yellow or reddish orange and the flowering period is spring through late summer.
     I picked this up at Home Depot. I had never seen one with spines so yellow before. I sprayed the plant with a little water to really bring out the color for the picture. I'll harvest the fruit and see if I can raise some from seed. Hopefully the seedlings will have the same gold spines. The pictures below were donated by Geoff Stein, a fellow member of the Davesgarden.com gardening forums. Thanks Geoff :-) The fruit and seed pic is mine.

A more reddish
form of the flower

Show specimen
with red spines

and seeds

All images and text are copyright 2005-Present, D.S. Franges, unless otherwise noted.
Flower and Show specimen pictures are copyright 2006 Geoff Stein