swirl cactus

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and this couldn’t be more true than for cacti and succulents, considered to be some of the most unusual plants in the world.

Quirky by nature, they are revered for their strange shapes, funky textures, extraordinary flowers and unusual colorations. Add to it that they can withstand some of the harshest conditions and store water like camels, we believe they are worth a closer look. Although we might not have names for all of them, we think their distinctive beauty is worth showing off. Here are some of our favorites.

Euphorbia-obesaEuphorbia obesa is commonly known as the baseball plant due to its shape. The one pictured here reveals how it propagates with pups, or offshoots, growing on top.

Astrophytum astericus
Astrophytum astericus—also known as sand dollar cactus, sea urchin cactus, star cactus and star peyote—is considered an endangered species.

Rare Cactus
Whatever this is, it’s clearly one of the rarest of the cacti and most likely considered a great collector’s

Gymnocalycium mihanovichii
Most likely a Gymnocalycium mihanovichii, this variegated cactus is also known as moon cactus, ruby red cactus, ruby ball cactus and mutant cactus. Notice the two flower buds on top.

Euphorbia mutante 
This rare and freakish Euphorbia mutante is part of a vast genus comprising more than 2000 species in odd-looking characteristics.

Conophytums are from the plant family of living stones, pebble plants or cone plants, and in the center of them a single daisy-like flower puts forth its bloom.

Crested Mutation cactus
With its undulating crested mutation looking like an eel wrapped around its prey, this cactus is reminiscent of something from the bottom of the sea.

Haworthia cooperi
Haworthia cooperi is a slow-growing succulent that produces clumps of small rosettes. The leaves are tiny, fleshy and transparent, making them look like green bubbles.

Gymnocalycium mihanovichii
Another example of a Gymnocalycium mihanovichii, this globular cactus gets its colorations from a lack of chlorophyll. 

Aloe polyphylla
Spiral aloe (Aloe polyphylla) features symmetrical leaves twirling around in a circle to form a rosette. Each plant has about 150 leaves.

Possibly a Notocactus, this beauty has variegated coloring and yellowish-brown spines on its globe-shaped body topped by a showstopping daisylike flower.

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