Lepismium. Cruciforme (Vellozo) Miquel, Bull. Neeri. 49. 1838
Info from Bradleya 13
The date of 1825 accepted for the publication of Vellozo's Florae fluminensis by Britton and Rose (1923) was incorrect and has necessitated a proposal to conserve the name Cactus cruciformis Vellozo over various priorable synonyms (Taylor 1994).
This species is enormously variable in habit and flower colour (cream, yellow, pink, or rarely magenta), such variation being partly linked to ecological factors. The extreme forms are probably of neotenic origin, resulting in slenderly cereoid plants with up to 6 ribbed stems and tiny flowers, which contrast strongly with larger-flowered forms with flattened axes up to 7 cm or more broad. Further study may enable some of these to be given formal recognition, but at present this variation appears to be more or less continuous.
Desc from Hunt 2006.
Branch segments very variable,3-6 angled, ribbed or winged, or flat, up to 50 x 1-7cm, usually suffused purple, margins more or less deeply crenate; areoles in the crenations, tufted with white hairs, subtended by a scale-like leaf rudiment; flowering areoles immersed; flowers lateral, 1-5 per areole, 10-13mm, almost white; pericarp somewhat emmersed; outer tepals tinged red or brown; fruit sub-globose, ca 6mm diam, purple red