Ferocactus Latispinus - Mexico Barrel Cactus
Known as the Devil's Tongue Cactus, or the Candy Cactus, this attractive barrel cactus is well known for its beautiful purple flowers and edibility.
Native to central and southern Mexico, particularly the Oaxaca region, this Ferocactus can reach up to around 40cm tall and wide, though more often than not is wider than it is tall. Its stem is a light green to blue-green, with a flat top, and notable for its sharp ribs. Spines grow in clusters of around 10, around 2.5cm long each, a reddish-brown and needle shaped.
Flowering from late autumn to early winter, its blooms are a beautiful deep purple colour, trumpet-shaped and around 4cm long. Blooms typically appear when there is plenty of bright sunlight, but can also appear when the cactus is still relatively small (around 10cm wide).
This cactus can be used to make sweets by coring the barrel of the cactus and soaking it in a sugar solution (as one would make candied fruit).
Requires full sun and a rich but well draining soil.
Frost tender to around 5°C, it can be kept down to temperatures of -4°C for short periods of time provided the soil is kept dry.