May 7, 2011 0 Commentsadmin
The stem is globe-shaped, later short cylindrical, up to 25 cm high, pale green, thickly covered with white flakes which the plant sheds in part in age. The crown is covered with densely interlaced flat, brown spines. There are about 9 sharp-edged ribs up to 2 cm high. The areoles with thick white felt are spaced 1.5 to 3 cm apart. The spines, about 10, are brown to grey, regularly arranged, flat, with stripes on the upper and underside. They are from 3 to 7 cm long, 2 mm wide, and break off easily in age. The flowers grow from the crown. 7 cm across, they open in full sunlight and have a typical fragrance. They are glossy, yellow, with carmine throat. The anthers are cream coloured, the style is yellow with 7 to 10 lobed, somewhat richer yellow stigma. The seed is large, boat shaped and chestnut.
The specific name capricornis means goat-horned; the spines resemble curved horns. Astrophytum capricorne, like all Astrophytes, is very popular for its attractive appearance and large glowing yellow flowers, which grow almost throughout the whole summer. Collections contain several varieties and hybrids, all of which show a marked resemblance.