Pediocactus paradinei
B.W.Benson 1957
Pediocactus paradinei is an attractive tiny plant with its long white hair like spine. This species has many characteristics in common with P.simpsonii.
Body, solitary 3-7.5cm in high, 2.5-5cm in diameter. Color is graish green. Central spine 3-6, 1-3cm, radial spine 15-20, to 5mm, but difficult to distinguish from centrals. Central of adult plants are very variable, sometimes long hairlike spine, white to gray with yellow to brown tips. Many people think "hair-like" spine is a "typical" characteristics of P.paradinei but in habitat there are few plants with such a long white hair. There are also hair-less adult plants. They are very variable in spination. Flower 20mm long, 25mm in diameter, pinkish beige to yellow, late April to early May.
They live in relatively higher altitude of northern Arizona., from 1600m to 2100m called Kaibab Plateau. The place P.paradinei live does not look like "cactus habitat", it is like "cool summer resort" in forest. Actually, winter of Kaibab Plateau is very cold, sometimes snow even in the spring. We can find good colony of P.paradinei in open area around 2000m in altitude, under the sparse trees of Ponderosa pine. Body of P.paradinei barely emerges out of the ground even in growing period. In summer and winter when they are in dormancy all of their body is sunken under the ground level and it is almost impossible to locate them.
The distribution area of P.paradinei is very small and they need protection.

Cultivation of P.paradinei is according to P.simpsonii from higher altitude. It is relatively easy among the genus. Plant on their own root are very hardy. But they do not like heat and very severe sunlight in summer. Do not keep them in hot and humid green house, keep them in airy place, because they like "wind". P.paradinei endures more humidity than other Pedio&Scleros. But I water them only from early March to May, rest of year keep them in dormancy. They are extremely slow grower. I think it needs 7 to 10 year to grow P.paradinei to adult specimen with long hairly spine. It's a long lasting challenge!
Coconino Co. ARIZONA  2,100m

Habitat of P.paradinei. It is not seem to be cactus country because of dense woods, like a rim of Grand Canyon.
Early in May, P.paradinei in bloom. Flower color are from cream such as this picuture to pinkish.
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Even 2cm individual, without hairlike spine, have flower.
In this year the snow had laid so deep in mountain..So P.paradinei were pumped up and in full brooming.
There are two young individuals.Their shapes are exactly like little "simpsonii".
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Somewhat lower altitude than above mentioned. P.paradinei occur in open place in sparse wood land like this picture.
You can find 5 individuals with "moss-covered" rocks in this picture. So we know the place is moderate moist..
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In June, The pot shaped fruits is almost ripen.The side skin of fruits will dehisce and seed will be out.
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The characterize long white spine begins to come out. It's really beautiful!
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The biggest individual, reaching 6cm in diameter. The long hair-like spine are rude and the body are covered with.
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Coconino Co. ARIZONA  1,900m