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 Mexico Trip - Part 4

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Chris43
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PostSubject: Mexico Trip - Part 4   Wed May 26, 2010 10:48 am

This part covers our searches to the west of Durango. We headed out on the Mex-40 in the direction of El Salto. We made a first stop just after the junction with the new autopista but found nothing there, but our second stop just before km 13 was more fruitful, finding Coryphanth compacta and more of the ubiquitous Mammillaria gummifera (of which you have seen enough so far!). Several more stops found more Coryphanthas and Mammillaria that looked rather different to the previous M. gummifera plants that we had seen. The central spine was very upward pointing and this we thought was a form of Mammillaria wagneriana.





Some distance further on, attracted by the bright red flowers that we could see on the hillside, we stopped and explored. The red flowers were of Echinocereus acifer, but the real prize was the discovery of Mammillaria longiflora.


One of the many plants with fully dried up flowers.


A close up of a dried up flower


M. longiflora


M. longiflora


M. longiflora


Where we found most of the M. longiflora plants, in rocky ground, partially shaded by the trees.

I was rather surprised at the length of the floral remains, which seemed to me to be really quite short. I didn't think we should have come across M. longiflora ssp stampferi in these parts, but it would seem that the length of the flower does vary somewhat.

There were also plants here which seemed closer to M. wagneriana than M. gummifera, but judge for yourselves from these next two photos - and let me know what you think!





Finally, just as we were getting back to the cars, literally beside the road on a rocky outcrop, again M. longiflora, this time still in flower - just!





We then went on to El Salto with the hope of finding Mammillopsis senilis. We searched a number of likely looking areas without success, and eventually asked help from the locals. A young man joined us, as he was supposed to know where these plants were, and we set out on a long drive into the mountains on what turned out to be an abandoned railway track, and though we found more Echinocereus acifer and also some other succulents (Agaves and probably Graptopetalum spp.) there were no M. senilis. Sadly an afternoon wasted, which could have been used better - but one has to get used to that, you can;t be lucky all the time.

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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip - Part 4   Wed May 26, 2010 2:45 pm

Hi Chris,

I had to do a search for Mammillopsis senilis to see what plant you were seaching for and found this picture that the poster states was "Taken in the Salto del Agua Llovida falls in the Western Sierra Madre, Durango, Mexico. "

Were you anywhere near this place?
Very Nice looking plant... Shame you couldn't find any
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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip - Part 4   Wed May 26, 2010 6:19 pm

I think we were in that area, but not at that waterfall. We did pass another one on our way, but it wasn't that one. This one is called la Cascada Mexiquillo, it is close to the town of La Ciudad.


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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip - Part 4   Thu May 27, 2010 2:51 am

Wow! That's beautiful.

I hope to one day get the opportunity to go cactus hunting like that Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip - Part 4   Thu May 27, 2010 7:40 pm

Thanks again for the pictures. They brought me wonderful memories.

I had managed to find M. senilis when I went there in 98 they were so common and on both sides of the canyon hugging the town of El Salto growing with E. acifer. Although I must say that at one point I found burnt out ones and on one side there was a dumping area for all the trash.

I have visited a similar waterfall and it was called La Cascada de Mil Dias, or Mil Dias for short. Which means literally 1010.

I was disappointed because I did not find M. longiflora which was reported by Lau from this part. And Oh, an E. acifer was growing right down the waterfall on one of the rocks.
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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip - Part 4   Fri May 28, 2010 8:55 pm

Thanks Chris for sharing the beautiful and interesting images from your Mexico trip
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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip - Part 4   Sat May 29, 2010 10:28 am

Thanks all for your comments, I'll post some more today.
Amante, I think we went a bit too far from El Salto, but access wasn't easy owing to a new autopista that is being made. I remember that we had a diversion and went past El Salto as a result, which we didn't think was a problem as we had a location to visit - but it was a heap of rubble when we got near there, the result of a lot of rock blasting for the new road.

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