Archive for 'Cactaceae'

Refugio Los Volcanes Cactus

Finding cacti here was a surprise to me! I saw their red flowers  from afar, but assumed totally different species. Some were several metres long, like this one, and only limited by the abiliy to withstand the gravity and wind. Altitude: 1062 metres.

Cardon cactus (Echinopsis tarijensis)

When not in bloom it looks just like the white-flowering Echinopsis atacamensis, but this one is much rarer, and I found only one with flower here on the slopes of Cerro Tunupa. Altitude: 3989 metres.

Cardon cactus (Echinopsis tarijensis)

When not in bloom it looks just like the white-flowering Echinopsis atacamensis, but this one is much rarer, and I found only one with flower here on the slopes of Cerro Tunupa. Altitude: 3989 metres.

Cardon cactus (Echinopsis atacamensis ssp. pasacana)

The white-spined variety is my favourite of the cacti here, and with the backdrop of the white saltflats they create a surreal feeling of ice and snow! Altitude: 3716 metres.

Cardon cactus (Echinopsis atacamensis ssp. pasacana)

The flowers of this species are simply gorgeous! Huge, juicy and dripping with resin! Without these cacti, the local insect and bird populations would have a much harder time. Altitude: 3716 metres.

Cardon cactus (Echinopsis atacamensis ssp. pasacana)

Many of the local guides regard the white-spined Echinopsis atacamensis as a separate species from the brown-spined, but evidently this is one species that has a way of coming in two varities! Altitude: 3716 metres.

Cardon cactus (Echinopsis atacamensis ssp. pasacana)

Many of the local guides regard the white-spined Echinopsis atacamensis as a separate species from the brown-spined, but evidently this is one species that has a way of coming in two varities! Both have huge white flowers. Altitude: 3716 metres.

Cactus (Cumulopuntia boliviana)

When the flower is gone, the remaining part is well protected from being reached, so what species is the fruit aimed at? Only insects and small rodents will reach the fruit unharmed, so perhaps that’s it? Altitude: 4004 metres.

Cactus (Cumulopuntia boliviana)

This is the yellowish variant of this species found here on the Bolivian Altiplano. It appears it does not grow to the huge size of the orange variant (Cumulopuntia boliviana ssp. ignescens)), and also the orange variant seems to bloom a bit earlier than the yellowish species. Altitude: 4004 metres.

Cactus (Cumulopuntia boliviana ssp. ignescens)

These flowers are grand and beautiful, and are some of the plants as well. Some individuals grow to monumental sizes that simply makes you stop in your tracks to wonder and ponder how this can be in an environment so hostile. I was lucky to experience the last of the flowers on this specimen, but […]