Gymnocalycium Pfeiffer ex Mittler (1844)

(Greek gymnos = naked; Greek kalyx = calyx)
naked flower calyx
because of the calyx without spines, bristles and hairs

usually flat globular, in age some thick columnar, very different sizes, simple or clumping
ribs 20 or less; spines adjacent or outspread, thin to very strong
flowers small short to large funnel shaped, often white or white with a red center, however also yellow or red,
calyx bare and scaly; fruits and seeds very different

Highslide JS


south America - Bolivia, Paraguay, south Brazil to Argentinia
almost complete south America eastern of the Cordilleras
steppes and mountains

Growth period

warm and partly shady, full sun is to avoid, temporarily a location outdoor is possible
plants with stronger spines is possible to get more direct sunlight
from early summer on abundant watering, but permanent moisture is to avoid
especially at warm weather the plants require more moisture

Winter period

bright and cool, not to dry, at 6–12°C (42–53°F), as possible not colder than 5°C (41°F)
species which origin in mountains occasionally somewhat colder


nutrient rich, very permeable to water with addition of peat
Gymnocalycium vatteri Buining (1950)
Highslide JS
  Highslide JS   Highslide JS


Córdoba - at the Sierra Grande, near of Non
on grassy hillsides in 2360–3120 ft (720–950 m) altitude


named to honor of Ernst Vatter, Buenos Aires
semi globular, 1.6 in (4 cm) high, 3.5 in (9 cm) Ø, dull matt olive-green
8–16 ribs, mostly 11, tubercles are gibbous swollen, below with sharp croswise notches
1–3 (–5) radial spines, horn colored or darker, variable in bending and length of the secundary spines,

occasionally very pressed to the surface, bended; moreover (also in habitat) partly 1 single spine
flowers 2 in (5 cm) long, 1.6 in (4 cm) Ø, white, with reddish center
seeds shiny light brown

Flowering time

June–July in cultivation
November–December in habitat
3–4 years from seed


Gymnocalycium ochoterenae var. vatteri (Buining) Papsch (1993)
Gymnocalycium ochoterenae
ssp. vatteri (Buining) Papsch (1993)
CITES Appendix II
Description of "Kakteen von A bis Z" by Walter Haage with courtesy by Kakteen-Haage made available.