I became interested in the genus Echinocereus in the 1950s when I came upon plants of Echinocereus fendleri and Echinocereus coccineus while hiking in the hills and mountains about Las Cruces, New Mexico. My interest was further stimulated by Dr. Benson’s book, The Cacti of Arizona, Britton and Rose’s Monograph, the Cactus and Succulent Journal and the catalogs of Gates Cactus Garden. The first problem I noticed in my study of the genus was the confusing plethora of names. I began the Echinocereus Index in the early 1960s as an effort to produce a list of all the names of species, subspecies, varieties and forms of the genus Echinocereus. Britton and Rose’s monograph provided a starting point, to which were added names from the Index Kewensis and the Gray Herbarium Card Catalog. Over the intervening years many other sources have been consulted and the index revised several times. Early in 1996 the index was transferred to a computerized file. This file has been circulated to many people through the internet, and late in 1996 the file was added by Martina and Andreas Ohr to their „Echinocereus Homepage.“ Since then, through the response of many Echinocereus enthusiasts, the index has been updated and corrected. Undoubtedly there are still errors and omissions in the index despite considerable effort to eliminate as many of these as possible. In a few cases the original sources have not been available to check the accuracy of the entry. These have been marked in the bibliography with an asterisk. The „Echinocereus Homepage“ file will continue to be updated with future corrections and additions.
Although the genus Echinocereus was not described by Dr. Engelmann until 1848, the first species which belong to the genus were described by Augustin de Candolle in 1828 from collections made by Thomas Coulter in central Mexico. These were Cereus pentalophus and Cereus cinerascens. Other species were described as Echinocactus or Echinopsis. At the suggestion of Prince Salm-Dyck, Engelmann (1849) reduced the genus to the rank of subgenus under Cereus. Labouret (1853) and Coulter (1896) followed Engelmann in placing Echinocereus in the genus Cereus, but Lemaire (1868), Rümpler (1885), Schumann (1897), and Britton and Rose (1922) all keep Echinocereus as a separate genus. Most modern taxonomic treatments also keep Echinocereus as a separate genus. Taylor (1985b) added those plants formerly classed as Wilcoxia to Echinocereus and the index has been revised to reflect this addition. Many people have been helpful in creating this index. Some of those who encouraged my early efforts such as Dr. Edward Castetter, Dudley Gold, Dale Morrical and Dr. Lyman Benson, are no longer with us, but without their help the index project would have been abandoned many years ago. Recently I have had the assistance of many people via the Cactus_ect e-mail list, in particular Lino Di Martino, Andreas and Martina Ohr, Billie Beaston, Bill LaHaye, and Michael Lange. The index has been expanded from just a list of names so that it now includes the author and place of publication for each name and information on the type locality and type specimen. The basionym and a list of synonyms (which are based on the same type specimen, designated by their author as synonyms, or contain the basionym) have been added so that the index can be used as an organized guide to the many names which have been applied to the plants in this genus. Information relating to other possible synonyms based on taxonomic interpretations are contained in notes at the end of each entry. The application of taxonomic synonyms is subject to different interpretation by different botanists. The index is intended to be a guide to the different names in this genus for Echinocereus enthusiasts and not a taxonomic treatment of the genus. I have not indicated any preference for any of the different taxonomic systems that have been proposed. Names that do not conform to the standards of botanical nomenclature have been marked with an asterisk. Since the name of a plant includes the name of its author and date it has been necessary in some cases to list the name more than once. In most cases the earlier names are just nom. nud. that probably belong to the later properly published name, but in some cases the different names refer to entirely different plants. I hope this index will be of help to everyone interested in the study, propagation, and preservation of these marvelous plants. The index is alphabetical by species, then subspecific ranks, then date. The order of the data is Genus, species, subspecies/variety/ forma, (basionym author if different) Author, date published:page. = basionym or index base name. TL: [Type locality], collector and type if known, date collected. The abbreviation of the herbarium where the type specimen is deposited and the specimen number are surrounded by ( ). The symbol (?) indicates it is uncertain if a type specimen was preserved. The full citation of the work in which the name was published can be found by checking under the author’s name and date in the bibliography, i.e. Taylor 1985b:120 is page 120 of The Genus Echinocereus. An asterisk* before the genus name means the plant properly belongs to another genus. An asterisk * after other names means the name is invalid or illegitimate. Names in bold are index base names and are followed by information about the basionym and other publication data. For full information of names that are not index base names please check under the name which follows the = sign. Please note that in those cases where the base name is not the basionym the basionym follows the = sign under the bold faced index base name. For the purpose of this index the rank used by the original author has been followed in determining the index base name. In those cases where the original author raised the rank of the plant the higher rank is followed in determining the index base name. This is for reference purposes only and does not indicate any preference in regard to the proper placement of any plant. Names that have never been published under the name Echinocereus are listed with the name of the genus that was used in the basionym. Autonyms (such as Echinocereus acifer var. acifer) are not listed. To find Echinocereus xxx var. xxx fa. yyy look under Echinocereus xxx fa. yyy. Nomenclatural synonyms are listed chronologically.
Las Cruces, New Mexico 1 May 2006. Permission to copy or reprint
for noncommercial purposes is granted.
Terry L. Corbett