Previous species
Previous Species

Next Species
Next Species

Home Page

Order CD-ROMs from the site

Tell a Friend

Gardening Books

Gardening Catalogs


Nellie Cory Cactus
Scientific Name: Escobaria minima (Baird) D. R. Hunt
Synonym: Mammillaria nellieae, Coryphantha nellieae, Coryphantha minima, Escobaria nellieae
Family: Cactaceae
Listed in CITES Appendix 1
Nellie Cory Cactus (Escobaria  minima) Recommended Temperature Zone:
USDA: 9-11

Frost Tolerance: Hardy to 20°F (-7°C)

Minimum Avg. Temperature: 50°F (10°C)

Sun Exposure: Light shade

Origin: Chihuahuan desert in the USA, they are found from only three populations, all in a tiny area of Brewster County, Texas

Growth Habits: Generally solitary, dark green stem, 0.5 to 1.1 inch long (12-27 mm), 0.25 to 0.7 inch wide (6-17 mm) in the wild, larger in cultivation; occasionally a short tap root; tubercles 2 to 4 mm wide; 1 to 4 central spines, 4 to 6 mm long; 13 to 23 radials, 3.5 to 5 mm long/

Watering Needs: Needs good drainage.

Propagation: Seeds, cuttings, grafting

This species is protected in Texas.

"Escobaria minima grows in desert grassland and is restricted to the Caballos Novaculite Formation. The Nellie Cory cactus is usually found growing among the chips of weathered and physically fractured novaculite, often in association with a spikemoss (Selaginella sp.). The cactus’ edaphic requirements are poorly understood. There is a need to determine these requirements to understand factors restricting its distribution, since it is only found on two novaculite ridges. The Nellie Cory cactus grows at an elevation of 1,200-1,350 m. The average annual precipitation is approximately 41.0 cm" U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Escobaria minima, picture by Gordon Smith

Blooming Habits:
The pink flowers are up to 1 inch in diameter (2.5 cm), 0.6 inch long (1.5 cm) in several flushes during the summer. The fruit is ovoid, green, 0.6 to 2 inches long (1.5-5 cm)

Fruiting Habits:

Check for Field Collection numbers at Ralph Martin's Site

Sponsors: Michigan Bulb - 120 x 60 Lawns Banner! Gurney's 120 x 60 A

We do get a small commission out of these sponsors that helps financing the website.  Let us know if you are satisfied or dissatisfied of their services, since obviously we are trying to advertise only for reputable garden supply companies.  They might be helpful to get plants not generally available at the local garden center, getting a new and unusual gardening tool or get a discount Better Homes and Gardens magazine subscription.


Desert Tropicals Home Page | List of All the Plants | More in the Cactaceae family | Tell your friends about this page

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.

© 1998-2005 Philippe Faucon, All Rights Reserved.