Mammillaria parkinsonii

Mammillaria parkinsonii fruit.

The Mammillaria parkinsonii is indigenous to central Mexico. It grows in lime and calcareous (calcium carbonate), rich soil. The regions in which it grows are classified as semi-desert. They are characterized by a warm/temperate, dry climate.

The Mammillaria parkinsonii is a woolly, mound forming species. As it matures, small clusters of elongated and flexible outgrowths (tufts), form by means of dichotomic division. In turn, this forms compact bunches. Flowers are diurnal (open during the day/close at night), and are funnel-shaped. Flowers take on a beautiful pale yellow to pinkish color with a central brownish to pinkish midvein. Flowers grow in a circular formation in close proximity to the apex. They originate from the areolas at the base of the tubercles. Buds are surrounded by a mass of white wool. Fruits are club shaped and take on varying colors including orange, red and scarlet.

This cactus is a summer grower. It is easily cultivated, making it a great choice for beginners. Full sun is preferred, however, it can tolerate light shade. Propagated by seed.


Cactus parkinsonii (Ehrenb.) Kuntze
Neomammillaria parkinsonii (Ehrenb.) Britton & Rose
Mammillaria auriareolis Tiegel
Mammillaria cadereytensis R.T.Craig
Mammillaria parkinsonii var. cadereytensis (R.T.Craig) Rogoz. & Plein
Neomammillaria cadereytensis (R.T.Craig) Y.Itô
Mammillaria cadereytensis var. quadrispina R.T.Craig
Neomammillaria cadereytensis var. quadrispina (R.T.Craig) Y.Itô
Mammillaria morganiana Tiegel
Mammillaria neocrucigera Backeb.
Mammillaria crucigera var. sensu Boed. non Mart.
Mammillaria pseudocrucigera Boed.
Mammillaria parkinsonii var. brevispina R.T.Craig
Neomammillaria parkinsonii var. brevispina (R.T.Craig) Y.Itô
Mammillaria parkinsonii subs. dietrichii (Tiegel) Backeb.
Mammillaria dietrichiae Tiegel
Mammillaria rosensis R.T.Craig
Neomammillaria rosensis (R.T.Craig) Y.Itô

Plant Details
USDA Zone Information: 
9b - 11
Flower : 
Yellow to pinkish
Ideal Light Conditions: 
Full sun to light shade
Ideal Water Conditions: 
Moderate in summer/Dry in winter
Speed of Growth: 
Mature Height: 
Mature Width: 
8" (forms clumps)
Latin Name: 
Mammillaria parkinsonii
Common Name: 
Owl's Eye Pincushion, Owl's Eye, Owl Eye Cactus, Owl Eye Pincushion

Corporate Clients (The King hangs hard)


RoboCop (1987)
RoboCop 2 (1990)
Hot Pursuit (2015)


USA Network's Queen of the South (2019)

Botanical Gardens:

New York Botanical Gardens
Oklahoma City Zoo/Botanical Gardens
Mercer Arboretum in Houston, Texas
Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids, Michigan


Houston, TX Zoo
San Antonio, TX Zoo

Other Clientele:

Houston, TX Rodeo

The Cactus King's cacti and succulents have gone international! If you ever find yourself in China with a little spare time, head to the Chimelong Ocean Kingdom. It is the largest Aquarium in the world (no big deal, pun definitely intended).

The Cactus King's plants are also featured in the Chimelong Ocean Kingdom's partner parks. These include their water park, amusement park, crocodile park and botanical gardens.

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