|Cover illustration. Turbinicarpus species are among the most popular of cacti, yet their stems and flowers are amomg the smallest. Indeed, it is their very minuteness that is one of their most appealing features, as well as the way in which they blend inconspicuously into their habitats. Under close examination, the stems also display much attractive variation in ribbing and spination. An entire collection of the 30 or so taxa could be grown in a square foot of space.|
Turbinicarpus pseudopectinatus (Back.)Glass & Foster is one of the jewels of the genus, notable for its comb-like spine-clusters. Its specific name also refers to its resemblance to Solisia pectinata (now known as M.pectinifera). Over the years, T.pseudopectinatus has been placed in six differnt genera, a process that will prbably continue in the future.
Our photo is by Julia Etter and Martin Kristen, many of whose images you will see in their Mexican travelog in this issue. Their high resolution digital camera has captured our cover plant in fine detail, including the splitting fruit and several seeds poised for dispersal. They encountered the plant growing under a bush along an old cart track running form El Quelital to Cerritos, San Luis Potosi, Mexico.