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Cold Hardy Cacti
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Cold Hardy Cacti

Many of the plants on this list was obtained from: Home Gardening and

Cactus and other succulent species that are cold and moisture tolerant:

Plants that have an * (or are linked) are on the mail order list

Agave havardiana
- average cold resistance (-20C, -4F)

Agave lechuguilla
- average cold resistance (-20C, -4F) *

Agave Neomexicana (Mescal Agave) to +05F *

Agave parryi *
- average cold resistance (-20C, -4F), maybe even -30C, -20F
- better resistance to rain than most Agaves

Agave tomeyana
- average cold resistance (-15C, 5F)

Agave Utahensis
- average cold resistance (-20C, -4F), maybe even -29C, -20F

Agave utahensis var. nevadensis
- average cold resistance (-20C, -4F)


Coryphanta Macromeris (Flabby Pincushion) to +10F *

Echinocactus Horizonthalonius var. Moelleri to +10F *

Echinocereus Coccineus (Mexican Claret Cup) *

Echinocereus Dasyacanthus (Texas Rainbow Hedgehog) to 10F *

Echinocereus Fendleri var. Fasciculatus *

Echinocereus melenacanthus - very good cold resistance

Echinocereus Nicholii (Nichol's Golden Hedgehog) *

Echinocereus reichenbachii v. perbellus

Echinocereus Stramineus (Strawberry Hedgehog) *

Echinocereus triglochidiatus
- very good cold and average moisture resistance (reports of -34C, -30F)

Echinocereus viridiflorus
- good cold resistance (at least -25C, -13F)
- resistant to moisture and rain

Escobaria missouriensis (var. missouriensis)
- same as Mammillaria missouriensis, Coryphantha missouriensis
- one of the most hardy cacti
- grows up to the border of Canada
- survives even in Scandinavia, Northern Europe

Escobaria vivipara (var. vivipara)
- same as Mammillaria vivipara, Coryphantha vivipara
- very good cold resistance
- grows in Alberta, Canada

Opuntia basilaris (Beavertail Cactus)
- average resistance to moisture and rain
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)

Opuntia compressa
- resistant to moisture and rain
- very good cold resistance (at least -34C, -30F)
- easy to grow, one of the best Opuntia s to grow in north, tolerates light shade

Opuntia cyclodes

Opuntia cymochila

Opuntia Englemannii var. Aciculata (Chenille) can survive to +5 F *

Opuntia erinacea (Grizzly Bear Prickly Pear) *
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)
- poor resistance to moisture and rain
- var. columbiana is the northest species

Opuntia fragilis (Fragile Prickly Pear)
- average moisture resistance but rain is not a problem
- very good cold resistance (-34C, -30F), rumours about -60C, -75F
- light shade preferred
- var. fragilis grows in the most southern parts of Canada and even reports of growing in British Columbia near the Arctic Circle!
- description in Northern Prairie Wildlife RC

Opuntia gilvescens

Opuntia humifusa (Eastern Prickly Pear)
- very good cold resistance (at least -34C, -30F)
- resistant to moisture and rain
- tolerates light shade

Opuntia humifusa var. humifusa
- grows near the border of Canada and USA

Opuntia imbricata (Tree Cholla, Devils Rope)
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)
- good moisture and rain resistance

Opuntia mackensii

Opuntia Violacea var. Macrocentra (Texas Santa Rita)
- sensitive to moisture and rain
- reports of surviving from -40C, -45F

Opuntia macrorhiza (Plains Prickly Pear)
- resistant to moisture and rain
- very good cold resistance (-34C, -30F)
- easy to grow
- grows up to the border of Canada

Opuntia macrorhiza x phaeacantha
- resistant to moisture and rain
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)

Opuntia Phaecantha
- resistant to moisture and rain
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)
- easy to grow

Opuntia phaeacantha var. camanchica
- resistant to moisture and rain
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)

*Opuntia phaeacantha var. major *
- resistant to moisture and rain
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)

Opuntia polyacantha (Hair-Spine/Plains Prickly Pear)
- average resistance to moisture and rain
- very good cold resistance (-34C, -30F)
- grows up to the border of Canada and USA

Opuntia polyacantha v. hystricina

- var. polyacantha

Opuntia polyacantha v. polyacanta
grows also in Canada

Opuntia polyacantha x. fragilis
- very good resistance to moisture and rain
- very good cold resistance (-34C, -30F)
- grows in Canada

Opuntia pulchella
- good cold resistance (at least -30C, -20F)

Opuntia sandiana

Opuntia sanguinicula

Opuntia tardospina

Opuntia whipplei (Whipple Cholla)
- average resistance to moisture and rain
- good cold resistance (-26C, -15F)

Pediocactus nigrispinus
- good cold resistance (at least -30C, -20F)

Pediocactus simpsonii
- good cold resistance
- average resitance to moisture and rain

Pediocactus simpsonii var. minor
- good cold resistance

Pediocactus simpsonii var. robustior
- good cold resistance

Pediocactus simpsonii var. simpsonii
- good cold resistance

Pediocactus spp.
- average moisture resistance
- good cold resistance

Sclerocactus spp.
- average moisture resistance
- good cold resistance

Trichocereus Pachanoi (San Pedro) can survive to +10 F (for short durations) *

*Yucca filamentosa Adam's Needle Yucca
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)
- easy to grow, tolerates light shade

*Yucca glauca
- good cold resistance (-29C, -20F)
- grows in southern Alberta, Canada. It also grows well in Middle Europe.

Many Sedum and Sempervivum species are extremely tolerant to cold and moisture.



Most info supplied by Craig Howe, who grows these in his Northern California garden - around 40” rainfall
mainly during winter, annual lows of 20F, often much lower ( recently, 1997/8 it was 13F, around -10C ). High
humidity all winter long, many sunny days but sometimes no sun for a couple of weeks. No guarantees for this
lot, however. Opuntias have been omitted.

Acanthocalycium glaucum
Acanthocalycium griseum
Acanthocalycium klimpelianum
Acanthocalycium peitscherianum
Acanthocalycium spiniflorum
Acanthocalycium thionantha
Acanthocalycium violaceum
Astrphytum capricorne and var niveum
Astrophytum senile and var aureum
Cereus peruvianus
Coryphantha lauii
Coryphantha macromeris
Coryphantha maiz-tabulaensis
Coryphantha muehlenfordii
Coryphantha palmeri
Coryphantha poselgeriana
Coryphantha recurvata
Coryphantha sheerii and vars
Coryphantha sulcata
Coryphantha vivpara and vars
Denmoza rhodacantha
Echinocactus horizonthalonius
Echinocactus setispinus
Echinocactus texensis
Echinocereus chloranthus
Echinocereus coccineus v paucispinus
Echinocereus delaetii
Echinocereus engelmannii - most vars
Echinocereus fendleri - most vars
Echinocereus pectinatus v neomexicanus
Echinocereus ployacanthus
Echinocereus reichenbachii - most vars
Echinocereus rigidissimus
Echinocereus stramineus
Echinocereus triglochidiatus and vars
Echinocereus viridflorus and vars
Echinopsis ancistrophora
Echinopsis ferox
Echinopsis melanopotamica
Echinopsis obrepanda
Echinopsis rhodotricha
Echinopsis subdenudata
Echinopsis tubiflora
Escobaria dasyacantha v varicolor
Escobaria leei
Escobaria missouriensis and vars
Escobaria orcuttii
Escobaria organensis
Escobaria similis
Escobaria sneedii
Escobaria strobiliformis
Ferocactus covellei
Fericactus cylindraceus syn acanthodes
Ferocactus fordii
Ferocactus hamatacanthus
Ferocactus herrerae
Ferocactus macrodiscus
Ferocactus pottsii v alamosanus
Ferocactus wizlisenii ( Utah or high elevation Arizona )
Gymnocalycium baldianum
Gymnocalycium bruchii
Gymnocalycium gibbosum
Gymnocalycium horstii
Gymnocalycium monvillei
Gymnocalycium quehlianum
Gymnocalycium tilcarense
Lobivia backenbergia
Lobivia bruchii
Lobivia chrysantha
Lobivia ferox and vars horrida and longispina
Lobivia sylvestre ( Chamaecereus sylvestrii )
Lobivia thionantha
Lobivia winteriana
Lobivia wrightiana
Mammilaria heyderi and vars
Mammilaria meridiorosea
Mammilaria microcarpa
Mammilaria miegiana
Mammilaria obscura
Mammilaria senilis
Mammilaria zeyeriana
Matucana polzii
Neolloydia intertexta and var dasyacantha
Neolloydia subterraneous v zaragosensis
Neoporteria curvispinus
Neoporteria subgibbosa
Neoporteria transiens
Notocactus leninghousii
Notocactus mammulosus
Notocactus ottonis
Notocactus rutlans
Notocactus submammulosus
Oreocereus celsianus
Oreocereus fossulatus
Oreocereus magnificus
Oreocereus trollii
Oroya borchersii
Oroya gibbosum
Stenocactus erectocentrus
Stenocactus pentacanthus
Stenocactus pyllacanthus v grandicornusm
Stenocactus zacatecaensis
Thelocactus bicolor and var tricolor
Thelocactus heterachromus
Thelocactus hexaedrophorus v lloydii
Thelocactus lauii
Thelocactus lloydii
Thelocactus lophothele
Thelocactus mathsonii
Thelocactus megharizus
Thelocactus rinconensis and var phymatohelos
Thelocactus uncinatus
Trichocereus candicans
Trichocereus chilensis and vars
Trichocereus cuzcoensis
Trichocereus formosa
Trichocereus grandis
Trichocereus pasacana
Trichocereus poco
Trichocereus pseudocandicans
Trichocereus randallii
Trichocereus terscheckii
Trichocereus tarijensis

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