Cactus, Claret Cup - Echinocereus triglochidiatus

The Plant w/Flowers

The Flower

The Fruit


"Echinocereus triglochidiatus is a species of hedgehog cactus known by several common names, including kingcup cactusclaretcup, and Mojave mound cactus. This cactus is native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico, where it is a resident of varied habitats from low desert to rocky slopes, scrub, and mountain woodland. It is most abundant in shady areas.

There are a number of varieties of this highly variable cactus species, but not all are universally recognized. In general it is a mounding cactus, forming bulbous piles of few to hundreds of spherical to cylindrical stems. It is densely spiny and somewhat woolly. The showy flower is a funnel shaped bloom up to 8 or 9 centimeters wide and bright scarlet red to orange-red tepals. There is a thick nectar chamber and many thready pink stamens at the center of the corolla. The flowers are pollinated by hummingbirds." (Wikipedia)

Ethnobotanical Uses


"Hedgehog cacti, with their larger and probably tougher stems, were sometimes roasted in a pit. Years ago ethnobotanist Vlney H. Jones recorded the eating and preserving of the fruits of of one of the hedgehog species, the spectacular Echinocereus triglochidiantus, know as claret cup cactus, at Isleta Pueblo: 'The pulp is prepared in a variety of ways. It may be sliced and baked as squash is prepared. A sweet pickle is made by baking it with sugar. Cakes and candy are made from it in much the same way (Jones, 1931).'" (Dunmire and Tierney 191)

Internet Resources