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Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Ordo: Caryophyllales

Familia: Cactaceae
Subfamilia: Cactoideae
Tribus: Cacteae
Genus: Pelecyphora
Species: P. aselliformis – P. strobiliformis

Pelecyphora Ehrenb. (1843)
Type species: Pelecyphora aselliformis Ehrenb.


Ariocarpus sect. Pelecyphora (Ehrenb.) Halda, Acta Mus. Richnov., Sect. Nat. 5(1): 38. 1998.
Ariocarpus subg. Pelecyphora (Ehrenb.) Halda, Acta Mus. Richnov., Sect. Nat. 5(1): 37. 1998.

Encephalocarpus A.Berger, Kakteen 331. 1929.
Ariocarpus sect. Encephalocarpus (A.Berger) Halda, Acta Mus. Richnov., Sect. Nat. 5(1): 38. 1998.
Type species: Encephalocarpus strobiliformis (Werderm.) A.Berger

Native distribution areas:

Continental: Northern America
Regional: Mexico
Mexico Northeast, Mexico Southwest

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition
Primary references

Ehrenberg, C.G. 1843. Bot. Zeitung (Berlin) 1: 737.

Additional references

Butterworth C.A., Cota-Sanchez J.H. & Wallace R.S. 2002. Molecular systematics of tribe Cacteae (Cactaceae: Cactoideae): a phylogeny based on rpl16 intron sequence variation. Systematic Botany 27: 257–270 [1].


Govaerts, R. et al. 2021. Pelecyphora in Kew Science Plants of the World online. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Mar 26. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2021. Pelecyphora. Published online. Accessed: Mar 26 2021. 2021. Pelecyphora. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Mar 26.
Hassler, M. 2021. Pelecyphora. World Plants: Synonymic Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the World In: Roskovh, Y., Abucay, L., Orrell, T., Nicolson, D., Bailly, N., Kirk, P., Bourgoin, T., DeWalt, R.E., Decock, W., De Wever, A., Nieukerken, E. van, Zarucchi, J. & Penev, L., eds. 2021. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Mar 26. Reference page.
USDA, ARS, Germplasm Resources Information Network. Pelecyphora in the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN), U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. Accessed: 09-Oct-10.

Vernacular names
suomi: Hilakaktukset
lietuvių: Ropenis
русский: Пелецифора
svenska: Gråsuggekaktussläktet
中文: 斧突球屬

Pelecyphora is a genus of cacti, comprising 2 species. They originate from Mexico.

Pelecyphora is known for its medicinal properties and may have been utilized as a psychoactive in the same way as Lophophora williamsii. It is known as "Peyotillo".


The two accepted species are:

Image Scientific name Distribution
Pelecyphora asseliformis 20070526.jpg P. aselliformis San Luis Potosi, Mexico
Pelecyphora strobiliformis.jpg P. strobiliformis Nuevo Leon, San Luis Potosi, Tamaulipas states in Mexico


At genus level

The genus Encephalocarpus A.Berger has been brought into synonymy with Pelecyphora.

At species level

The following are synonyms of species now placed outside of Pelecyphora:

Pelecyphora aselliformis var. pectinata (= Mammillaria pectinifera)
Pelecyphora pectinata (= Mammillaria pectinifera)
Pelecyphora pseudopectinata (= Turbinicarpus pseudopectinatus)
Pelecyphora valdeziana (= Turbinicarpus valdezianus)
Pelecyphora plumosa (= Turbinicarpus valdezianus)
Pelecyphora pulcherrima (= Turbinicarpus pseudopectinatus) Wikimedia Commons has media related to Pelecyphora.
Conservation status
Both P. aselliformis and P. strobiliformis are classified as being of Least Concern on the IUCN Red List, however both species are contained in Appendix 1 of CITES species (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) as at June 2013.

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