Gymnocalycium

ENDANGERED

gymnocalycium.jpg

Gymnocalycium oenanthemum is a species of flowering plant in the Cactaceae (cactus) family native to Argentina. It has the shape of a slightly flattened sphere growing up to 12cm in diameter. It grows in high altitude grasslands, in summer it blooms a wine-red or pink flower. This species is only found in two locations. It is often collected by locals and occasionally some specialised collectors, as it is a very popular houseplant in Europe and the UK. This, in turn, causes a strain on the population and depletes it. However, the major threat this plant faces is human-made fires in the grasslands, which strip and degrade its natural habitat, making it increasingly difficult for the species to mature. As this cactus does not find itself in any protected areas, there are currently no conservation efforts in place to prevent it from going extinct in the wild.