Captivating Cactus and Striking Succulents: 20 in a series – Mammillaria

Photo: Douglas E. Welch

Mammillaria is one of the largest genera in the cactus family (Cactaceae), with currently 200 known species and varieties recognized.[1] Most of the mammillarias are native to Mexico, but some come from the southwest United States, the CaribbeanColombiaVenezuelaGuatemala and Honduras.[2] The common name “pincushion cactus” refers to this and the closely related genus Escobaria.

The first species was described by Carl Linnaeus as Cactus mammillaris in 1753, deriving its name from Latin mammilla, “nipple“, referring to the tubercles that are among the distinctive features of the genus. Numerous species are commonly known as globe cactusnipple cactusfishhook cactus or pincushion cactus though such terms may also be used for related taxa, particularly Escobaria. — Wikipedia

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