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Cacti of the Southwest

By Del Weniger

Publication Year: 1970

Published by: University of Texas Press

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. ix

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pp. x

Support for this study was graciously provided by a grant-inaid for research from the Society of the Sigma Xi. Appreciation is expressed to Our Lady of the Lake College which granted me time for the study and made available certain facilities for growing and photographing the plants. ...

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pp. xi-xv

Portrayed among the ancient stone carvings of Mexico, woven through the legends of that land, and central in the seal of the nation itself is the strange thick stem or the spiny jointed bush of the cactus. These plants must have been ever present for the people of that land, interesting to them and of some significance to their lives as far back as we can know. ...


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pp. xvi-Plate 64

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What Is a Cactus?

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pp. 3-7

Before going directly into the description of the various cacti we might pause to consider, for those who have not concerned themselves about these things before, how a cactus differs from other plants, what is so special about it, and what are some of the problems the uniqueness of its form and physiology bring to it in its natural situation ...

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Key to the Genera of the Cacti

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pp. 8-9

The keys which are given here and before the discussion of each major genus are based as far as possible on the vegetative characters of adult individuals, but it appears to be impossible to construct workable keys for the cacti based on these alone. It was found necessary to refer in some cases to the flowers or fruits and sometimes even to the seeds. ...

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Genus Echinocereus Engelmann

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pp. 10-54

The Echinocerei make up one of the largest genera of cacti, both in number of different species and in number of individuals found growing in the area of this study. Many of its members are collected and grown by cactus fanciers all over the world as great favorites because of the beauty of their flowers as well as of the plants themselves. ...

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Genus Wilcoxia

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pp. 55-56

The genus Wilcoxia was erected by Britton and Rose in 1909. Some earlier writers had included its members in Cereus and some in Echinocereus. Since 1909 the species in the genus have been dealt with in various ways. Berger placed them in the genus Peniocereus, while Benson returned both of these genera to the genus Cereus, ...

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Genus Peniocereus

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pp. 57-59

Before Britton and Rose made this separation, the group had been part of the large genus Cereus. It is very hard to show significant characters to distinguish this genus Peniocereus from several other closely related genera. Perhaps its standing as a separate genus cannot be well justified, but the old genus Cereus has been so subdivided and reduced ...

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Genus Acanthocereus

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pp. 60-62

Here is a small genus of somewhere around a dozen species carved out of the huge old genus Cereus. No one seems to dispute this one. Whether it is so little criticized because it is more of a natural group or because so little is certainly known about it is a question which might occur to anyone reading the numerous but remarkably incomplete and often contradictory statements about its members. ...

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Genus Echinocactus

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pp. 63-94

Most of the cacti in the genus Echinocactus live up to the meaning of the name. Some of them present among the strongest, most rigid spines found on any cacti, and most of them are covered with as complete a spine cover as is found anywhere. Their main spines are often made especially troublesome by being hooked at the end, ...

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Genus Lophophora

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pp. 95-99

We come here to one of several cactus genera which seem to lie between the Echinocacti and the Mammillarias. Although there have been attempts in the past to submerge them in first one and then the other of these larger groups they seem to defy either combination. ...

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Genus Ariocarpus

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pp. 100-102

The body of an Ariocarpus consists of one or occasionally a cluster of low, flattened stems from only about 2 inches in diameter and not projecting above the soil level at all in some forms to as much as 10 inches across and 5 inches tall in one form. This stem sits on top of a large, carrot-like taproot. ...

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Genus Pediocactus

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pp. 103-106

Originated for one species of cactus, this genus has grown through the years until it now contains at least seven species. The increase has come about in two ways. Four of its species have been discovered and described only within the past twenty years, and three of these less than ten years ago. ...

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Genus Epithelantha

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pp. 107-109

The whole stem of this cactus is covered with very many, very tiny tubercles—apparently the smallest tubercles of any United States cactus. Hiding these almost entirely from view are very many tiny spines. The growing tip of the stem is in the form of a rather distinct depression which is filled with a great deal of hairlike wool ...

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Genus Mammillaria

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pp. 110-158

The members of this genus are for the most part comparatively small or sometimes extremely tiny cacti. The plant stems vary in different species from depressed and almost flat to globular or sometimes even columnar in shape, and are often referred to as “heads.” In some species these remain single, while in many others they multiply from the base to become caespitose, ...

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Genus Opuntia

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pp. 159-240

Placed last in this account is the large genus, Opuntia. Those who deal in matters of primitive versus advanced and theories of development tell us it should really be the first United States genus considered. The Opuntias are generally regarded as more primitive than the cacti we have already enumerated, and they also certainly deserve first place for their success. ...


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pp. 241-242

Index of Scientific Names

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pp. 243-247

Index of Common Names

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pp. 248-249

E-ISBN-13: 9780292784543
E-ISBN-10: 0292784546
Print-ISBN-13: 9780292700000
Print-ISBN-10: 0292700008

Publication Year: 1970