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 Mammillaria formosa vs Mammillaria sempervivi

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PostSubject: Mammillaria formosa vs Mammillaria sempervivi   Mammillaria formosa vs Mammillaria sempervivi Icon_minitimeFri Feb 27, 2009 12:12 pm

Hi
Mammillaria sempervivi and Mammillaria formosa (specially som form of this) are very similar in the descriptions, How we can distinguish them?
I think the number of radial spines are important, but it is very variable! Neutral
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PostSubject: Re: Mammillaria formosa vs Mammillaria sempervivi   Mammillaria formosa vs Mammillaria sempervivi Icon_minitimeFri Feb 27, 2009 4:55 pm

Hi Lucio,
I don't think they are so difficult to distinguish, especially when in flower.
M. sempervivi has very few radial spines and they soon drop off, leaving just 1 or 2 central spines. The flowers also are quite definitely yellow.
M. formosa and its various forms, always have persistent radial spines, usually 2 or more central spines, and pale pink to white flowers. The only plant that differs in M. pseudocrucigera, often stated to be a form of sempervivi, but this has pink striped flowers, though its spines are more like the proper sempervivi. Pilbeam says that ssp. pseudocrucigera is the link between formosa and sempervivi - I agree in spine formation, but not in terms of flower, which is much darker than any formosa form I have seen.
I have heard, but not seen, of an apparently true sempervivi which has pink flowers, but in many cases the plant turns out to be pseudocrucigera.

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