Ariocarpus Fissuratus Cactus
Ariocarpus fissuratus var. lloydii is traditionally distinguished from var. fissuratus by its higher, somewhat rounded and more convex stem appearing above the ground.
Stem: Scarcely appearing above the ground, flat to somewhat rounded and sometime even columnar shaped in cultivation. In habitat the stems in adult specimens ranges from 10 to 15 cm in diameter.
Tubercles: The tubercles of var. lloydii are very different from those of the standard Ariocarpus fissuratus and easily recognizable. They are imbricated, ovate, broad at base and usually more rounded at the apex, about 2 to 3 cm wide. They lack edges and lateral longitudinal furrow (or are only weakly fissured). They are only finely rugose with quite coarse, often confluent papillae in the whole surface which form transversal ledges and irregularly warty.
Areoles: Filled with a dense mass of hairs, up to 3 mm wide, sometimes confined to middle of tubercle faces instead of extending to tips.
Flowers: These plants have a woolly crown, from which emerge 3 to 4 cm broad, white to purple (usually pink) 2 times wider than long when fully expanded. Inner perianth-segments oblong-oblanceolate; style and stigma-lobes white.
Blooming time: October, November. Flowers last for 3 to 4 days.
Fruit: Ovoidal, pale green.
Seeds: Black, tuberculate-roughened.
Root: Each plant has a large turnip-like taproot, which lies below the soil surface and serves for water storage.
Ariocarpus fissuratus, Ariocarpus lloydii and Ariocarpus intermedius
The Ariocarpus fissuratus is quite variable in shape of stems and tubercles for its wide area of distribution, ranging from USA (Big Bend region of Texas and along the Rio Grande) to Mexico ( Northern and central to southern Coahuila).
The typical A. fissuratus found on the northern part of it its range is very different from the southern form found in central Mexico that is characterized by rounder not fissured tubercles; this southern form was early described as A. lloydii. However in habitat this species species displays a continuum of characteristics over its range that make difficult to classify A. lloydii as a separate species. The more of less intermediate form found in northern Mexico ( Cuatro Cienegas in south-central Coahuila and Estacion Marte in southern Coahuila) was early named Ariocarpus intermedius.