Strawberry cactus, coast fishhook, California fishhook
South California - San Diego, Riverside and San Bernardino counties
Single, or small clusters
Coastal scrubland, pinyon-juniper woodland; up to 4,500 feet elevation
Pale yellow, with deep red stripes underneath. Produced between February and May
Distribution map for mammillaria dioica
Mammillaria dioica is most widespread along the San Diego coast, but is also found in the Anza Borrego Desert area, as well as Baja California in Mexico. Stems are medium sized, up to 6 inches tall, and about 2 inches across, and may be solitary or part of clusters of up to 50 members. There are between 11 and 22 radial spines per areole, and three or four reddish central spines, of which the longest, perpendicular to the stem, is strongly hooked.
The flowers are the most distinctive feature of the plant owing to the deep red stripes through the middle of the undersides of the otherwise pale yellow tepals. Tepals are not fringed. Flowers may have only pistils, or both pistils and stamens. Stigma lobes are greenish-yellow.