Selenicereus pteranthus | ‘Princess of the Night’ | Live plant

Selenicereus pteranthus is not only a handy rootstock, but a beautiful cactus too! Live plant.

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Selenicereus pteranthus | ‘Princess of the Night’, ‘Snake Cactus’ | Live plant

(syn. Cereus pteranthus, Selenicereus nycticalus)

We’re happy to add Selenicereus pteranthus to our collection, an attractive ornamental plant and a useful and versatile grafting stock. Available from our shop as well-rooted cacti, cloned from our original mother plant.

Native to the tropical forests of Mexico, Selenicereus pteranthus is synonymous with both Cereus pteranthus and Selenicereus nycticalus. Beside Mexico, it’s widely distributed across countries such as the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands and Cuba. This globally popular species is known by many informal names, including ‘Dama-da-Noite’, ‘Flor de la Noche’, ‘King of the Night’, ‘Pitahaya Real’, ‘Pitayita-Nocturna’, ‘Princesa da Noite’, ‘Princesa de la Noche’, ‘Prinzessin der Nacht’, ‘Regina della Notte’, ‘Princess of the Night’ and ‘Snake Cactus’. The species’ botanical name is formulated from the Greek “pteron”, or “wing“, and “anthos”, or “flower“.

Similar to many other Selenicereus species, pteranthus is a climbing and/or hanging, spiny cactus with multiple purple-blue-green-coloured stems, which  grow to several metres in length and roughly five centimetres in diameter. Each stem consists of between four and six, evenly-spaced ribs, sprouting one to five, conical spines (up to approximately three-millimetres in length) from each of its – elliptical – areoles. Funnel-shaped, wonderfully fragrant flowers bloom only at night (prolifically, under optimal growing conditions), coloured pale cream-to-white and reaching roughly twenty-five centimetres / ten inches in diameter. These flowers are followed by red, spherical fruit, coated with fine, hairy yellow spines up to roughly one centimetres in length.

For best results, grow pteranthus in light shade to full sun, in a well-drained, roughly equal parts rich soil and perlite (or similar) mix. Water during the growing season, but only when the top few centimetres of soil dries out. Fertilise every two to four weeks during this time too. One more thing (relevant to most/all cactus gardens: avoid frosts wherever possible if you value your plants!

Product Details

Product Type

Live plant


1 cutting


~20cm tall

Common Name

Princess of the Night






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