Sclerocactus papyracanthus is a widespread species growing in the high plains of western New Mexico and eastern eastern Arizona. It typically grows in association with grama grass, and is therefore given its common name of "the Grama Grass Cactus". This is typically a very small plant growing to maybe 3 inches tall ( but it is frequently shorter) with club-
Over the years, accounts have varied concerning how rare or common this plant actually is, but the present view is that while it is seldom seen in great numbers in any single locality, this plant has a wide distribution, with many identified populations, many of which occur within protected forests and parks, so this species is regarded as non-
Over the years, this species has been shuffled back and forth between several genera, and has been variously identified as Sclerocactus papyracanthus, Pediocactus papyracanthus, and Toumeya papyracanthus, and may still be found in the trade under any of these names to this day.
About 10 years ago, I grew a plant from seed purchased from Mesa Garden. Plants in some portions of its range probably experience brief exposure to temperatures to as low as -
This is a reasonably easy species to grow and flower, but it really requires very bright light for best growth and development. It probably does best when grown outside through the warm months of spring through fall, but in cold climates, plants should be over-
It is possible to grow this plant from seed, and some specialist nurseries may carry seeds of this plant from time to time. Scarification and cold stratification are probably necessary for best germination, and even then, germination is erratic and sporadic. Plants which are grown on grafts typically mature more rapidly and will typically produce more offsets than plants on their own roots.