Epithelantha micromeris Seeds
Epithelantha micromeris, also known as button cactus, is a small, globular ornamental cactus. Its green flesh is entirely covered by a tight mesh of ornate spines, giving it a white appearance. This species was also known as Hikuli Mulato by the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico who believed the cactus gave them clarity, long life and speed. Considering this cactus sacred, they reportedly placed the cactus’s red, tubular fruits before the altar at ceremonies. Epithelantha micromeris is also known for having extremely small flowers, which are light pink and bloom in late spring. It is also extremely hardy, reportedly surviving temperatures as low as -12°C.
Epithelantha micromeris is valued by the Tarahumara as 'híkuli mulato,' the 'dark skinned peyote.' Why it is considered 'dark skinned' is not fully understood as the plant has very small white spines almost completely hiding its green epidermis. It is likely the name has a much more symbolic rather than literal meaning. Epithelantha micromeris is credited with great intellectual and moral qualities. Its fruits are laid before the altar in ceremonies and it had continued to play a minor part in Tarahumara festivals well into the 20th century. The 'medicine' is said to give speed to runners, prolong life, and make the eyes large and clear to be able to see sorcerers. It, and its fruit, are ingested as a stimulant and protector by runners, but are considered less effective than L. williamsii. In addition to alkaloids, five triterpenes and one sterol have been reported from within Epithelantha micromeris."
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