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 Mexico Trip- Part 6

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Chris43
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Chris43

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PostSubject: Mexico Trip- Part 6   Mexico Trip- Part 6 Icon_minitimeSun May 30, 2010 5:06 pm

Again we left the hotel quite early, and made a number of stops during the day. Of these, 5 stops provided Mammillarias, although there were plenty of other plants, Escobarias, Coryphanthas, Thelocacti, Cylindropuntias etc. at all of them.

Our first Mammillaria stop was about 6km before Mapimi on Mex-30 heading west, and here we found several Mammillarias:

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Img_0510
Mammillaria pennispinosa

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Mammillaria pennispinosa

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Mammillaria pottsii

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A view of the site

Somewhat further along on the MEX-30, maybe 4 km before the turn to San Pedro del Gallo, we stopped to see some glorious Yuccas, and then explored the north side of the road. It was a lovely area, full of Coryphanthas, Echinocerei, and:

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Img_0514
Mammillaria stella-de-tacubaya

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And lots more Mammillaria pottsii

Now we drove on until we met the Mex-45 again, and turned off this road just before the bridge over the Rio Nazas near Absolo (or Barranco) which was signed as San Rafael. We were heading towards Minas Navidad, but stopped for lunch some distance along this dirt road. Here there were some lovely Thelocactus heterochromus plants in flower, and one species of Mammillaria:

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Img_0610
Another Mammillaria stella-de-tacubaya

Eventually we arrived at the location at which we hoped to find a certain Mammillaria. After a long time searching, not really knowing where at first to look, we did find a number of the plants, more on lower level rocks, a surprise as we had headed higher to start with.

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Img_0611
Mammillaria nazacensis (or pennispinosa ssp. nazacensis)

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Mammillaria nazacensis

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A view over the Rio Nazas valley from up on the hillside

Reluctantly we left this very beautiful spot, and returned to the Mex-45 to head back up north towards our overnight stop at Hidalgo del Parral. We made another stop just before the town of Las Nieves, and found an interesting Mammillaria.

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Imgjr_11
I think it is a form of M. heyderi.

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Pict1064
But the lower spines - are they centrals? or radials?

Again, I would like confirmation of my identification of this plant. It seems to have one very short central, and 15-18 radial spines, the upper ones white and short, the three lower much strongerl, much longer and of a darker colour. My take is that it is M. heyderi ssp. heyderi (or applanata).

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woltertenhoeve



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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip- Part 6   Mexico Trip- Part 6 Icon_minitimeSun May 30, 2010 6:37 pm

In my opinion, the last heyderi-like plant is M. gummifera. This nice form can be found in a very wide region, in the northwestern part of the state of Durango (perhaps also further north, I would have to check my photos).
Last year I also visited the Minas Navidad. In the area between the former mining village and the mine (abandoned since a year) I found M. nazasensis and M. guelzowiana, sometimes growing just a few meters from each other.
See nazasensis photo below. Your nazasensis location is probably much closer to the river. Interestingly, Woody Minnich, identifies the plants at Minas Navidad as M. sinistrohamata (WM 5730).

Wolter.

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Img_5010
M. nazasensis
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Chris43
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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip- Part 6   Mexico Trip- Part 6 Icon_minitimeSun May 30, 2010 7:54 pm

Hi Wolter,
The nazacensis location we searched was that of ML617.
I suggested the plant was heyderi ssp. heyderiIt based on the radial spine count..
This subspecies is (in Pilbeam) said to have 15-22 radial spines, and just one central - which conforms to the plants shown.
M. gummifera is decribed as having 10-12 radial spines, 1-2 central spines sronger than the radials.
So I end up being a bit confused as to the difference.

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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip- Part 6   Mexico Trip- Part 6 Icon_minitimeSun May 30, 2010 9:02 pm

Hi Chris,

The ML nazasensis location will be closer to the MEX-45 than my location. Originally, we also went to look for the ML location, but the description was not accurate enough for us and we missed that location and ended up at the mining village.
Reppenhagen says of M. gummifera that it has 10 to 13 radial spines, the lower ones being the longest and the thickest. He mentions 1 to 2, rarely 4, central spines.
In 2004 I saw similar (perhaps even prettier spined) plants north of Tepehuanes. I have added two photos from other locations, one from south of Las Nieves, along the unpaved road to La Parita and one from about 200 km further north, at El Pino (which is about 150 km west of Chihuahua, near Ciudad Guerrero).

Wolter.

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Img_1710

M. gummifera near La Parita (south of Nieves)

Mexico Trip- Part 6 Img_1810

M. gummifera near El Pino (near Ciudad Guerrero, Chihuahua)
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PostSubject: Re: Mexico Trip- Part 6   Mexico Trip- Part 6 Icon_minitimeThu Jun 03, 2010 2:38 am

Wow! I have never seen Mammillaria pennispinosa or Mammillaria stella-de-tacubaya! They're Gorgeous! Especially M. pennispinosa! I love those feathery radials!
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