Hedgehog cacti (Echinocereus spp)
Hedgehog stems have ridges and grooves on the surface. The flowers are produced below the stem-apex, each just above a mature spiny areole and bursting the epidermis of the stem as it grows. Hedgehog fruit is spiny.
We are just beginning to examine the range of our Echinocereus species. First, an image from a flowering seen on March 31, 2003, along the Ridge Road of Pool Wash. Click on the images for a close-up view.
Second, an example from the slope near the Backbone (or Notch) Ridge, April 8, 2004.
The general vicinity of the Cow Camp, toward the upper end of Pool Wash, has a considerable number of Hedgehog cacti, and should be useful for distinguishing species. Here are two examples below,
first, a vertically grooved hedgehog photographed in March 2003, with a bud just beginning to form above its areole.
A number of hedgehogs photographed in March 2006 along the eastern flanks of Sierra Blanca showed these very long white central spines.