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Origin and Habitat: Mexico, in the state of Tamaulipas, Nuevo León and San Luis Potosí. Turbinicarpus viereckii has a limited range (extent of occurrence about 2,000 km²) and the population consists of less than 10,000 individuals.
Altitude range: This species is found at an altitude of 750-850 metres of altitude.
Habitat: Turbinicarpus viereckii grows in semi-desert (Tamaulipan Shrubland) among calcareous rocks in cracks, on cliff faces, so they get very little nutrients, and grow nearly free of organic matter. The only naturally occurring organic matter will be leaves blown around and getting caught on the spines. Illegal collecting threatens some subpopulations.
SPANISH (Español): Biznaugita
Description: Turbinicarpus viereckii, more often known with its old name Gymnocactus viereckii, is an attractive dwarf cactus covered with characteristic glassy white and black spines with bright magenta flowers.
Habit: Usually solitary, occasionally clustering.
Stem: Dull green, globose to slightly cylindrical 3-5 (-12cm) tall, 3-5(-7) cm in diameter apex with abundant white wool.
Ribs: 15 to 18 ribs divided in tubercles.
Tubercles: 6 mm long rhomboidal conical.
Central spines: 3 to 5 white with black tips in a cross like formation, 2-4 cm long.
Radial spines: 17 to 22 rigid white translucent, some with brown tips, 0.8-1.3 cm long.
Root: Swollen bundled.
Flowers: Bright magenta or pink with greenish-white throat and darker mid-ribs, 1.5-2.5 cm long, 12-20 mm broad.