Astrophytum stellate (asterias) has the shape of a ball, on the ribs of which there are grayish fluffy areoles. Diameter – about 15 cm, number of ribs – from 6 to 8, no spines. The flowers are large, up to 7 cm, yellow with a red center.
Atrophytum Asterias ( Astrophytum Starry ) – the birthplace of culture is Northern Mexico. This variety is slow growing. It has a spherical, slightly flattened trunk. The ribs are weakly expressed. The color of the cactus is greenish-brown. There are white specks on the ribs of the trunk. The plant has sharp thorns, brown hue. Inflorescences are large, yellow with a red core. Flowering time is in summer.
DESCRIPTION AND ETHNOBOTANY
|Growth Form||The spherical to cylindrical stem is typically divided into 8 ribs. Young seedlings may have simple spines which disappear after a few months.|
|Flowers||Yellow, funnel-shaped flowers occur at the top.|
|Habitat||In nature, this species occurs underground with only the top exposed and level to the ground.|
|Etymology||The specific epithet asterias is Greek for being similar to a star.|
In Japan, the asterias are named Kabuto because of their resemblance to the helmet in traditional Samurai clothing. Thus, most cultivars will have a compound name from this “Kabuto” root.
The denser flaking with larger, fluffy white spots that distinguishes the Super Kabuto cultivar from the type species. The areoles, however, continue to be the same as asterias. This cultivar continues to be smaller, with a maximum diameter of 8–10 cm. It is embarrassing for the plant’s appearance when the epidermis occasionally has a tendency to crack.
and size (bigger, up to 20cm in diameter).
The whiteheads indeed resemble white paint spots on the epidermis since they were
as large as those in SK but flat, without relief, and without puffiness.
Additionally, Mirakuru-specific traits seemed to emerge later in the plant than in younger specimens, which retained the asterias’ traditional appearance.
All the other cultivars of asterias with a very developed flaking come from a selection based on hybrids of the cultivar Super Kabuto, but also numerous crosses between cv Snow, Hanazono, Zebra and V type giving an infinity of asterias with different flakes.
Astrophytum Asteria (star cactus)
Cactus enthusiasts appreciate the Astrophytum Asteria plant for its distinctive, hefty, tiny star-shaped appearance.
It is quite simple to grow and makes a wonderful accent to a terrarium or cactus display.
The body of this spineless cactus is fashioned like a greenish-gray star and is evenly divided into eight sections. It is coated in tiny white hairs. The ridges of each section of the cactus are accented with lovely white dots that drop from its surface.
A little, spineless cactus known as Astrophytum Asterias takes on a flat, non-branching appearance. Because A. asterias grows so close to the ground, the earth in its natural habitat practically entirely engulfs it.
The stem is flat, dark green, and has 8 ribs as well as several woolly areoles. The plant is covered with many, loose, hairy scales that occasionally form a line or arch around the areoles and are dispersed throughout in erratic patterns.
The plant produces huge, frequently larger-than-the-plant yellow flowers with orange centers, which are followed by an oval or circular fruit that is green, pink, or grayish-red in color and heavily covered in white wool and spines. The glossy, brownish-black seeds have either a bowl-like or helmet-like shape.
Position Full sun
Watering Water abundantly but rarely, water in winter
Size Height about 5 cm. Diameter about 15cm
Climate Semi hilly areas 8 to 9 (-7 C / -7 C)
Propagate the seed
Seasonality evergreen, winter dormant
Toxicity None Hazardous
Flowers Yellow daisy-like flowers from March to May
Height: 0 – 5 feet
Width: 0 – 5 feet
Growth Rate: Slow Growing
Grow Season: Summer
Flower Season: ForeSummer
Water Use: Low water Use
Given that it resembles a sea creature, Astrophytum Asteria, also known as the Star Cactus, has acquired a number of other names, including sea urchin and sand dollar cactus.
Astrophytum Asteria Star Cactus Care
Astrophytum Asteria grows outdoors and thrives in full sun to moderate shade in its native habitat of Texas and Mexico. This plant must be grown indoors in direct sunlight if you want it to thrive in colder locations.
Move your Astrophytum Asteria to a position with an abundance of sunlight that is a little bit cooler but still bright over the winter. Moving to a colder area will encourage flowering the next year.
A well-kept plant of the species grows very slowly, therefore persistence and patience will be helpful in this situation. After reaching full maturity, you can anticipate a height of 1–5 cm and a diameter of 3–15 cm.
Even by cactus standards, Astrophytum Asteria needs a lot less water than you might think. Water your cactus every two to four months during the summer, making sure the soil is totally dry between applications.
Watering should be minimized in the summer. It is due to Astrophytum Asteria, a plant that has a climbing season in the summer and is essentially dormant all winter. Even though your plant is in dormancy, it is still developing, only much more slowly and with less of a need for nutrients and water.
Push the dirt around the drainage holes in the pot’s base or press your finger down at least a quarter inch into the ground to check for stinging dirt. You can go ahead and water your cactus if the soil appears to be completely dry.
Keep a watch out for overwatering signs. All of these have a softer, mushier, or browner hue around the cactus’ base. This is often a few inches below the ground line’s surface. Your cactus might possibly cease growing altogether.
If your Astrophytum Asteria looks wrinkled or is tender to the touch, it probably needs water.
Always plant Astrophytum Asteria in well-drained soil, much like the majority of other cacti. To acquire the oxygen they require to thrive, the roots must be free of excess moisture.
Use coir or soil free of peat that has been combined with minerals like gravel, sand, or perlite. Planting in the right kind of soil will encourage healthy growth and aid in avoiding disease and root rot.
The sole unique requirement for Astrophytum Asteria, given how easily it can be grown, is a restful winter to give it the best chances of flowering successfully the following year.
Reduce the frequency and volume of watering and move your cactus to a cooler place
specifically for the winter in order to give it a well-rested period.
By doing this, your cactus is more likely to bloom the following year.
The Astrophytum Asteria cactus blooms from March to May. The flowers are yellow with an orange center and are about 8 cm in diameter. When followed, the flowers turn into hairy berries that are pink, red, or gray all at once.
Use pre-made cactus mulch and sprinkle water on top to encourage a good, strong root system and healthy growth. Only fertilize once every four to six weeks during the summer. In the winter, you don’t need to fertilize your Astrophytum Asteria. Our 10-10-10 fertilizer is dilute.
The slow-growing Astrophytum Asteria only requires repotting every two to three years. Always use well-drained soil for repotting, and give your cactus a few days to adjust by continuing to water it. then, as was previously mentioned, water.
How to Propagate Astrophytum Asteria
You can just grow Astrophytum Asteria from seed. If you are fortunate enough to have a mature plant, gather the seeds from the fruit that takes care of the flowering. Otherwise, use high-quality store-bought seeds. Use seeds that are as fresh as possible for the greatest possibility of success.
Gather the seeds from the fruit’s mature capsules once it has finished flowering. Before planting, remove the seeds from the capsule and allow them fully dry.
Use cactus soil, but supplement with extra sand to improve drainage. Then, sprinkle little sand over the dry seeds to gently cover them. Don’t expose seeds to direct sunlight. Young plants and seedlings demand a warm, sheltered position with plenty of soft, tight color if sexy enough, as well as good ventilation.
Water is just enough to keep the soil moist until the seeds germinate, which can take about 8 weeks.
Reduce the water once the sprouts have emerged.
The recognized dome form will take them around a year to develop, and your ridges and points will take about two decades.
Pollinator Effectiveness, Pollinator Importance, and Pollen Dispersal in Star Cactus (Astrophytum asterias)
Star cactus (Astrophytum asterias) is a federally endangered plant and from known records is restricted to a single south Texas county and a small number of sites in northeastern Mexico.
Star cactus is an obligate outcrosser that does not reproduce vegetatively, so all reproduction is the result of inter-plant pollen transfer by insects.
The most common visitor, Macrotera lobata, is a relatively ineffective pollinator, while the less common Diadasia rinconis is the most effective and important pollinator of star cactus.
Common Difficulties With Astrophytum Asteria (Star Cactus)
Astrophytum asteria cactus root rot is frequently caused by overwatering, letting the soil stay wet, or not utilizing well-drained soil.
You must take your Astrophytum Asteria out of its pot in order to treat the root rot.
The dirt around the roots should then be very gently brushed off.
Roots that are delicate and dark or brown are rotting and cut.
To eliminate root rot, always use clean, sterile scissors or a knife, and let the cuttings wash off
before repotting with fresh soil in a clean kettle.
Water thoroughly, but less often thereafter.
Scale insects, which are frequently found between the Astrophytum Asteria ridges,
produce a characteristic cotton-like pile on the surface of plants.
Their straw-like lips are gathered to the foliage, where they feed on plant sap.
To clean them, use detergent, neem oil, home pesticide, or warm water.
Repeat often until the infestation is eliminated.
Scales are dormant, shell-like parasites that sit on the ridges of Astrophytum Asteria and feed on the sap from within. Infestations cause the plant to look sick and withered. You can treat tartar by using diluted detergent or sterile water to wash them off.