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Golden Rat Tail
Scientific Name: Cleistocactus winteri D. Hunt
Synonym: Hildewintera aureispina, Loxanthocereus aureispinus, Winterocereus aureispinus, Borzicactus aureispinus, Winteria aureispina, Cleistocactus aureispinus
Family: Cactaceae
Golden Rat Tail (Cleistocactus  winteri) Recommended Temperature Zone:
USDA: 9b-11

Frost Tolerance: Hardy in Phoenix to 28F (-2C)

Minimum Avg. Temperature: 50F (10C)

Heat Tolerance: Light shade in Phoenix in summer

Sun Exposure: Light shade to full sun

Origin: Argentina to Uruguay

Growth Habits: Columnar cactus forming masses of columns, up to 3 feet tall (90 cm), stems 2.5 inches in diameter (6 cm); 16 to 17 ribs; spines 50, 0.16 to 0.4 inch long (0.4 to 1 cm);

Watering Needs: Regular water in summer, keep rather dry in winter

Propagation: Seeds, cuttings


The Golden Rat Tail cactus is often encountered under a variety of botanical names. It has very attractive golden spines and grow rapidly. If it likes its growing conditions you will also be rewarded by the pink flowers that come in abundance.

Cleistocactus winteri crest

Golden Rat Tail (Cleistocactus  winteri)

Cultural Practices:
This cactus is sensitive to mealy bugs that find a lot of hiding ground among the spines.

Blooming Habits:
The Cleistocactus winteri has salmon-pink flowers in spring and summer, 1.6 to 2.4 inches (4 to 6 cm) in length, 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter. Mature plants bloom repetitively. The flowers are followed by green fruit, 0.4 inches long (1 cm).

Fruiting Habits:

Check for Field Collection numbers at Ralph Martin's Site


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Desert-Tropicals is dedicated to provide gardening advice, gardening ideas, and information about flower of all kind for landscape and collections. We try to check carefully the identification of the plants on the illustrations as well as the other information from the page, but occasionally errors do occur. if you notice anything that needs to be changed please contact us. Thanks.

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