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Family of cactus. Wide area of distribution Bolivia, Paraguay, Peru, Colombia, Uruguay, Northern Argentina, Central and Southern Brazil, mainly in rocky highlands, at an altitude of 2000-3000 m above sea level. The genus includes about 50 species, many of which were transferred from the genera Eriocactus, Notocactus and Wigginsia, others from independent species were transferred to subspecies. The inclusion of the genus Notocactus in the genus Parody was carried out by the International Organization for Succulent Plant Studies in the late 80s of the last century, and is still disputed by many biologists.
The last accepted classification in the world by Edward Anderson (2005), according to her, the genus Parody Parodia consists of three subgenera: Subgenus Parodia, Subgenus Eriocactus and Subgenus Brasilicactus.
In turn, the subgenus Parody Subgenus Parodia includes the parody group Group Parodia and the Notocactus group Group Notocactus (which includes plants previously attributed to the genus Notocactus and the genus Wigginsia).
Research of the Parody genus does not stop, there is also debate over the correctness of the taxonomy, the problem is that there is no law - which classification to adhere to. Some collectors use Anderson's classification, others - Bakkeberg, others their own, the same plants appear under different names (one plant can have about a hundred synonyms). The inclusion of Notocactus in the genus Parody is especially violent protest from cactusists. But since the time of changes in the last taxonomy of cacti, the technical possibilities of studying plants have increased to unprecedented heights, now they are being investigated using a scanning electron microscope, which makes it possible to take detailed photographs of cactus seeds, find the smallest differences in their structure, and scientifically substantiate belonging to separate genera or subspecies … Therefore, perhapsin the near future, we will see more changes in taxonomy.
Cactus Species Parody
- Parody small-seeded Parodia microsperma (Group Parodia) - with a short cylindrical stem up to 20 cm long and about 10 cm in diameter. Ribs 15-30, arranged in a spiral on the stem, tuberous. Radial spines on average 15-20, and more, they are almost white, up to 7 mm long. There are 4 central spines, reddish or brownish, one of them is longer, on average 1-1.5 cm long (sometimes up to 2.5 cm), with a hook at the end. Flowers 5-7 cm in diameter, golden yellow or orange. It blooms in early summer, several flowers bloom at the same time, keep open for about 3 days. This type of parody is very changeable, in view of the wide distribution area (they live at altitudes from 500 to 3000 m above sea level, in Bolivia, Argentina), has more than 7 dozen synonyms, taxonomy is still controversial among botanists. So far, two subspecies have been identified:
- Parodia microsperma ssp. microsperma - it has a spherical green stem, the radial spines are thin, flexible, grayish, filiform, central spines with a hook, long, thin.
- Parodia microsperma ssp. horrida - has a cylindrical stem, green with a reddish tint. Radial spines are matte, gray; central spines are curved or straight, strong, hard, thick gray-brown.
- Parody of the golden-spined Parodia chrysacanthion (Group Parodia) - the stem is initially spherical, slightly flattened, stretches with age, up to 10 in diameter and 20 cm in height. Ribs about 24, they are not high, arranged spirally, areoles on small tubercles-papillae, with short white pubescence. Radial spines from 30 to 40, they are thin, slightly golden. Central spines from 1 to 4, the color does not differ from the radial, one is longer, straight. The flowers are bright yellow, about 2 cm in diameter. Homeland Argentina. This parody prefers light shading during the hot hours of the day in summer and the soil is slightly richer in humus.
- Parody beautiful Parodia formosa (Group Parodia) - stem is spherical, flattened, ribs about 18-26, areoles are white, fluffy, on low tubercles. radial spines about 30, up to 8 mm long, gray-brown. There are 6-12 central spines, they are 8-10 mm long, of the same color, slightly darker at the ends. The flowers are lemon yellow. Homeland Bolivia.
- Parody snow Parodia nivosa (Group Parodia) - has a spherical stem, reaching 10 cm in diameter. Ribs 16-26, tuberous, areoles white, fluffy. Radial spines up to 40, they are 10 mm long, 4 central ones, they are thicker, up to 1.5 cm long. All spines are white. The flowers are bright red, up to 5 cm in diameter. Homeland Argentina.
- Parody racemose Parodia penicillata (Group Parodia) - stems are cylindrical, rather long - in old specimens they reach 60-70 cm in length and 15 cm in diameter. Ribs 17-19, arranged spirally, areoles on tubercles with white pubescence. Radial spines up to 40, thin. The central spines are thicker, stronger, up to 5 cm in length, there are about 10-15 of them. All spines are light brown. The flowers are red, up to 5 cm in diameter. Homeland Argentina.
- Parody of Maass Parodia maassii (Group Parodia) - with a spherical-cylindrical stem, reaching a length of about 15 cm. Ribs 13-21, arranged spirally, tuberous. Areoles in young cacti are strongly pubescent; with age, the pubescence is greatly thinning. 8-10 radial spines up to 1 cm long, amber in color. Central spines from 1 to 4, reaching 5-7 cm, yellow-brown, slightly curved downwards. With age, the radial and central spines lighten, acquire a gray or gray-brown color. The flowers are about 2.5 in diameter, bright yellow. Blooming in spring, flowers appear in turn one after the other.
- A parody of the majestic Parodia magnifica (Subgenus Eriocactus) - a spherical bluish-green stem up to 15 cm in height and 12 cm in diameter. Pronounced deep ribs, areoles sit tightly to each other. Radial spines are thin, golden in color, up to 1 cm long, in the amount of 12-15 pieces. Flowers up to 5 cm in diameter, lemon-yellow, during flowering several flowers bloom at the same time. Synonyms: Eriocactus magnificus and Notocactus mignificus.
- Ritter's parody Parodia ritteri (Group Parodia) - spherical at first, then a cylindrical stem, ribs 13-21, arranged slightly in a spiral. Areoles are large, white, woolly. There are 10-14 radial spines, they are white-pink, there are 4 central spines, one is long, dark brown at the end, curved, the other three are almost indistinguishable from the radial ones. Flowers about 3.5 cm in diameter, dark red, brownish, with long white hairs at the base. Berries up to 8 mm long, completely covered with white hairs. Seeds are black, up to 0.7 mm long, tuberous. Synonyms: Parodia splendens.
- Parody of Hausstein Parodia hausteiniana (Group Parodia) - spherical stem, about 5-7 cm in diameter, 13 ribs, sharp, areoles are large, white fluffy. Radial spines up to 30, they are gray-white, up to 1 cm long. Central 4, from 1.5 to 3 cm long, brownish. The flowers are small - about 1-1.5 cm in diameter, the fruits are olive green, ovoid, up to 4 mm long, the seeds are dark brown. Synonyms: Parodia laui, Bolivicactus hausteinianus.
Temperature: Normal in summer, room temperature, the more fresh air the better. In winter, a dormant period at an average temperature of 8-10 ° C, with a dry content. The permissible minimum is + 6 ° С, at temperatures above + 12 ° С, the parodies continue to grow and can stretch out strongly.
In the summer, it is advisable to post parodies in the open air - on a balcony, or in a garden under cover from rain and wind. In their homeland, these plants live in conditions of wide fluctuations in daily temperatures, some species are able to tolerate even short-term frosts down to -1 ° C, but potted plants do not need to be kept at subzero temperatures. In the absence of cold wintering, even with a content of 15 to 18 ° C, parodies may not bloom.
Lighting: Bright sunlight, in spring the sun is taught gradually to avoid burns. Many species require shading during the hottest midday hours. Focus on the protection of the cactus stem with thorns - the more thorns, the better it is adapted to the scorching sun.
Watering: Moderate in summer, after the soil is completely dry. From the end of summer, when the snap gets cold, the frequency of watering decreases, and in winter, during the cold dormant period, without watering or with very rare (a little once a month) moisture. Parodies are prone to root and stem rot when the soil is waterlogged. Also, cacti are sensitive to water quality, so it is better to use soft water, rain, boiled or filtered with a household filter for irrigation. It's not about the need for calcium, but about the deposition of salts, which cause ugly corking at the base of the stem.
Fertilizer: From late spring to mid-summer, they are fed with a special fertilizer for cacti, in a dose that is half that for other cacti. Do not overdo it with feeding - cacti do not tolerate overfeeding of fertilizers.
Air humidity: Parodies are resistant to dry air. In hot summer weather, you can apply a dusty mist spraying in the morning.
Transfer: You can make a soil mixture from the following components: 1 part of sod land (sifted from sod, or from molehills), 1 part of coarse river sand, 1 part of brick chips, 1 part of fine gravel (2-3 mm). Plus a few pieces of birch charcoal. Young plants are transplanted annually, old (more than 5 years) in two years.
Seeds and some types of babies. The seeds germinate better, and in the future the seedlings develop well, with daily temperature fluctuations, when the temperature is + 25-28 ° C during the day, it drops to + 8-10 ° C at night. That is why it is good to sow parodies in the second half of August, keep crops on the balcony, covered with glass. As soon as the shoots appear, add light, especially if it is cloudy. For the first winter, cactus cubs are grown warm, with additional lighting with fluorescent lamps and drip irrigation, as the substrate dries up. Some parody collectors advise, in order to accelerate growth at an early age, to carry out more frequent picks of seedlings - after a month and a half.
For more information about the features of various modes of maintenance, transplantation and reproduction, see the section Cacti.