Trichocereus pachanoi f. cristata variegata [form 1] | ‘Variegated Crested San Pedro’ | Live plant


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A rare specimen indeed – a magnificent, mutated crested AND variegated form of Trichocereus pachanoi! Live plant.

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Trichocereus pachanoi f. cristata variegata [form 1] | ‘TPCV’, ‘Variegated Crested San Pedro’ | Live plant

(syn. Echinopsis pachanoi f. cristata variegata, Trichocereus macrogonus subsp. pachanoi f. cristata variegata)

This listing is for excellent quality Trichocereus pachanoi f. cristata variegata [form 1, as we have another, distinct, form available] – the ‘Variegated Crested San Pedro! Available in limited quantities as live, rooted plants. We spent years avoiding getting stuck into variegated cacti for our own collection, but – now that we have a moderately-sized collection such plants of our own – now wish we’d started collecting them earlier! This fascinating, fasciated plant is not only a cristate (crested), mutant form of the much-loved Trichocereus pachanoi (syn. Echinopsis pachanoi), but it’s also variegated (mottled or patched with unusually-coloured growth) too!

Briefly, cristation is a process whereby a cactus starts growing abnormally, resulting in unusually cresting, fanning and/or twisting growth – reminiscent of brains or coral. It can occur due to genetic mutation, mechanical injury, lightning strikes, or consequent to the freezing of growth rings during heavy frost. The second interesting aspect of these particular genetics is variegation, a mutation which occurs in cactus (and other) species when there’s a total or partial absence of green chlorophyll, giving rise to mottling, marbling, striping, banding, blotching, or spotting of white, some shade of yellow, or other colours (for example, red).

Commonly known as ‘San Pedro’ (and also as ‘Achuma’, ‘Aguacolla’, ‘Giganton’, ‘Hahuacollay’, ‘Huachuma’ and ‘Wachuma’), the standard pachanoi form is a fast-growing columnar cactus found naturally in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. A native of the Ecuadorian and Peruvian Andes Mountains (at an altitude range of around 6,600 to 9,800 feet), pachanoi has been used for more than 3,000 years by humans, variously as an ornamental, for religious divination and in traditional medicine (human and animal). It’s closely related to other species such as Trichocereus bridgesii (the ‘Bolivian Torch’) and Trichocereus peruvianus (‘Peruvian Torch’). Typical forms of the species grow up to twenty feet tall (although the highest recorded was forty feet!) under ideal conditions in USDA Zones 8-10. Its stems, usually forming multiple branches from the plants base, grow up to fifteen centimetres in diameter and generally possess six to eight ribs.

Pachanoi’s origins in the Andes enable it to withstand far lower temperatures than can many other cacti and it’s consequently easy to grow indoors and outdoors in most areas. However (considering the form listed here is both cristate and variegated), we tend to baby it a bit more than either the standard type, or even its non-variegated crestate form. In practice, this means a little less water, a little less direct sunlight and a little more attention, but nothing too demanding. Simply plant in a well-drained, mildly alkaline to mildly acidic soil mix and water only as the top few centimetres of soil become totally dry. We fertilise ours two or three times each year (as we do all our other cacti), albeit applying roughly half as much as the manufacturer’s recommended dose – just in case we stress them out!

Product Details

Product Type

Live plant


1 rooted plant


~11cm diameter, ~7cm tall

Common Name

Crested San Pedro, San Pedro






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