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Rare and beautiful Neobuxbaumia tetetzos are one of my favorite species of columnar cacti.


While browsing through a popular cactus reference book I came upon a photograph of a forest of N. tetetzos growing on a hillside near Puebla, Mexico. The plants in the foreground took on a beautiful seagreen hue, while the ones in the distance looked frosty white. I instantly fell in love with these plants, thinking, Wouldn't it be nice if I had a forest of these plants in my landscape?!

Several years, while visiting Bach's Cactus Nursery (Tucson, Arizona) with a friend of mine who was into the cactus business, Dan Bach picked up on my enthusiasm for  collecting plants for my cactus garden, and as a result he kindly donated a flat of unidentified cactus seedlings to me . Dan's quote at the time was,"I'm not sure what these are, but I'll bet they grow well in your garden!"

Time passed.
Later, while visiting the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden, and observing their tetetzo specimens, I discovered that the plants I had received from Dan Bach were N. tetetzos.
Twenty-eight years later, you can find these plants strewn throughout a section of my cactus landscape, which I now happily refer to as my "Tetetzo Canyon."


Sherman Williams
Owner, Red Canyon Desert
October 26, 2013

Neobuxbaumia tetetzo.  
Distribution: Puebla & Oaxaca, Mexico.

Neobuxbaumia tetetzo is a dominant species which ranges of 150 square miles within the states of Oaxaca and Puebla. Tetetzos undergoe a mass flowering period in late April, and produce long whilte flowers which open a sunset and remain open until mid-morning of the following day.

This species is pollinated primarily by nocturnal visitors, primarily bats.
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Closeup view of spines structure
Neobuxbaumia tetetzo,
with a protruding, new arm
RCD Logo (Cooper)