The golden barrel cactus has a globe-like appearance and is recognized by its magnificent color that comes from vertical yellow ribs that line its edges. The spines of the golden barrel cactus will light up any landscape with its magnificent color. This architectural beauty is a signature cactus of the Southwest desert. The golden barrel is considered a rare and endangered species. It grows slowly to three feet high and spreads two feet wide. At maturity, yellow blossoms appear at the top of the plant in spring, followed by fruit. Use this showy accent in containers with other desert plants. It can also be planted in groupings, as a mass planting with boulders in rock gardens, or to create a striking statement in the landscape. The golden barrel cactus can add significant texture and accent to the landscape. This plant is native to central Mexico from San Luis Potosi to Hidalgo.
This cactus is drought-resistant, so water it once per month during the warm, dry season. It does not need any irrigation during the winter months. Too much water can cause this cactus to rot. Plant the golden barrel in well-draining soil. It prefers full sun or filtered shade locations and is hardy to thirteen to fifteen degrees Fahrenheit.