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Mammillaria tetrancistra, commonly known as the Fishhook Cactus, based on factual information:


  • Light Requirements: Mammillaria tetrancistra thrives in bright, indirect light to partial sunlight. It can tolerate some morning sun but should be protected from intense afternoon sun, especially in hot climates.


  • Watering Needs: Water Mammillaria tetrancistra sparingly but deeply. Allow the soil to dry out completely between waterings to prevent rot. During the active growing season (spring and summer), water when the top inch (2.5 cm) of soil feels dry. Reduce watering in winter when the plant is dormant.


  • Soil Type: Plant Mammillaria tetrancistra in a well-draining cactus mix. A sandy or gritty soil with excellent drainage is essential to prevent waterlogging, which can lead to root rot.


  • Temperature Range: Mammillaria tetrancistra prefers warm temperatures between 65-80°F (18-27°C) during the growing season. It can tolerate slightly cooler temperatures but should be protected from frost, as it is not frost-tolerant.


  • Humidity Preference: Mammillaria tetrancistra prefers low humidity levels typical of desert environments. It can tolerate dry air and does not require high humidity.


  • Fertilization: Feed Mammillaria tetrancistra sparingly with a balanced, diluted fertilizer formulated for cacti once a month during the growing season. Refrain from fertilizing during fall and winter when growth slows down.


  • Propagation Methods: Mammillaria tetrancistra can be propagated from seeds or offsets (pups) that develop around the base of mature plants. Allow offsets to dry and callus for a few days before planting them in well-draining soil.


  • Pruning Requirements: Minimal pruning is needed. Remove any dead, damaged, or diseased parts of the cactus with clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears.

Pests and Problems:

  • Pest Control: Monitor for common cactus pests such as scale insects or mealybugs. Treat infestations promptly with insecticidal soap or neem oil. Ensure good air circulation around the plant to prevent fungal issues.

Potting and Repotting:

  • Repotting Needs: Repot Mammillaria tetrancistra every 2-3 years or when it outgrows its current container. Choose a slightly larger pot with drainage holes to accommodate its root system.

Special Care Notes:

  • Dormancy: Mammillaria tetrancistra may have a dormant period in winter, during which it requires less water. Reduce watering during this time to prevent overwatering.

By following these care guidelines, you can help your Mammillaria tetrancistra thrive and display its unique fishhook-shaped spines in your cactus collection. This species' adaptation to desert conditions makes it a resilient and rewarding addition to any succulent garden.

Mammillaria tetrancistra "fishhook cactus"

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