Mammillaria compressa De Candolle

Mammillaria compressa Fig.-1
Fig. 1 Group of three Mammillaria compressa plants highlighting spine variation within the species

Like most plants from this genus that come from Mexico, Mammillaria compressa grows in shallow soils within the states and provinces of Guanajuato, Hidalgo, Nuevo León, Querétaro and San Luis Potosí. This species was first described by the Swiss botanist Augustin Pyramus de Candolle in 1828. The plants shown here are in 14, 18 and 27cm pots (Fig. 1) and highlight the wide variability in spine arrangement for this species. One plant is trichotomising (Fig. 2). These are all at flowering size but are still small compared with habitat plants (and rarely in cultivation) that might reach mounds of one metre or more in diameter.

Mammillaria compressa Fig.-2
Fig. 2 Example of trichotomising in Mammillaria compressa

It is a fairly fast growing species that will form large clumps when compared to other species of Mammillaria. Most plants will offset readily, and clumps can fill a large pot or pan in time so space is needed to show it off at its best.

Mammillaria compressa is an easy to grow species, and does not require any special treatment. I grow this species in a John Innes and grit mix and water with a low nitrogen feed from around March to September.

Photos and text by David Bruno.

No part of this article may be reproduced without permission. Copyright BCSS & the Author 2023

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