Science notes


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CEREUS - Cereus sp. Acanthocereus sp. Bergerocactus sp. Carnegiea sp. Cephalocereus sp. Eriocereus sp. Harrisia sp. Hylocereus sp. Lemaireocereus sp. Lepidocereus sp. Lophocereus sp. Marshallocereus sp. Neovansia sp. Peniocereus sp. Pilocereus sp. Piptanthocereus sp. Selenicereus sp. Stenocereus sp. Wilcoxia sp. Cactus, Cierge, Sšulenkaktus, Torch Thistle. Russian: Kaktoos Kroopnotsvetnii, Tsaritsa Nochi.

Cer. emoryi (Echinocereus e., B. e.). Cacto Aterciopelado, Jaramataca, Pitahayita, Pitayita, Sacamatraca, Saramatraca, Velvet Cactus. The seeds and fruit are eaten by birds, rodents, and insects.

Cer. flagelliformis: Cuerno, Flor de LŠtigo, Flora de las Antillas, Floricuerno, Hierba de Alferecia, Junco, Junquillo. Exotic. Has pharmacological properties. Ornamental. Use the floral infusion as a prophylactic for eclampsia, and to cure this problem. The juice used externally is rubefacient, and internally it is vermifuge or anthelmintic. It is dangerous to use.

Cer. grandiflorus (Cactus g.): Cierge a Grandes Fleurs, Cirio de Flores Mayores, Night Blooming Cereus. Exotic. Has pharmacological properties. Use the stem and flowers. They contain grease, resins, coloring material, a bitter principle, glucose, latex, dextrin, starch, sacrosa, albuminoids, chlorophyll, volatile oil, oxalates, cellulose, woody material, and mineral salts. They also contain cactine, a doubtful alkaloid. The medicinal uses are those of digitalis, without which it exhibits a secondary effect. Use 1 cc of the alcoholic tincture, a half cc of the fluid extract. The flower is stimulant.

Cer. greggii (Pe. g., Cer. pottsii): Arizona Night Blooming Cereus, Deerhorn Cactus, Huevo de Venado, Night Blooming Cereus, Nightblooming Cereus, Queen of the Night, Reina de la Noche "queen of the night", Sweetpotato Cactus. Akimel: Hook vaao "Witches' ladle". These plants tend to grow among shrubs and are hard to find. They tend to bloom for several nights in June. Each flower blooms only one night, and has a strong scent which can lead one to the plant. However, some people cannot smell them. The flowers are called Reina de la Noche: Queen of the Night. This plant is becoming rare, and a person may have to have a permit to collect or use it. The root ordinarily weighs 5 to 15 pounds, but has been known to weigh up to 87 pounds. The tubers are edible. They taste like turnip or beet but are less pungent. They can be baked in ashes, peeled, and eaten. Or, slice the tubers and fry them in deep fat. They can also be chewed to quench thirst. The fruit and flowers are edible. The shoots are edible as greens. Saturate a cloth with the juice of the crushed roots and place it or the tuber on the chest for lung inflammation or congestion. They can be cut up, boiled, and eaten for diabetes, or they can be sliced, and the juice can be sucked. Mix the pod in deer grease to make a salve for sores. The root can be used as soap. Birds eat the fruit and seeds.

Cer. scandens: Prickly With, exotic. The fruit is edible, and it is used to make withes. It grows on trees.

Pil. johnstonii: Matraca, Pitayita, Saramatraca. The night flowers are fragrant. The fruit is edible, and the spines are easily brushed off. The root is edible and medicinal. This plant is scarce.

Neoevansia diguetii (N. striatus, d., Pe. d., W. d., striata, Cer. digueti, striatus) : Dahlia Rooted Cereus, Jacamatraca, Rajamatraca, Wilcoxia. Seri: Xtooxt. The root is edible raw, but it may cause skin sores or rash. The fruit is edible raw. Peel and grind the tuber, sait, heat with oil, such as olive oil, and put it on a swollen area. Grind the tuber, salt it, and put it on a baby's head to harden the fontanel. Birds eat the seeds of this species.

Science Notes