Stamps featuring Cacti and Succulents

The Philippine Postal Corporation will issue a set of topical stamps featuring Cacti and Succulents .

Kind of Issue: Special
Denomination and Quantities: P6.00 – – – – – – 200,000
Souvenir Sheet: 24 00 – – – – – 12 500
Date of Issue: December 5, 2003
Last Date of Issue: June 5, 2004
Sheet Composition: 16 (4 x 4)
Size of Stamp: 30mm x 40mm or
40mm x 30mm (in souvenir sheet)
Perforation: 14
Printing Process: Litho-Offset ( 4 colors)
Paper: Imported Unwatermarked
Printer: Amstar Company, Inc.
Design Coordinator: Ferdinand C. Lao
Layout Artist: Alfonso V. Divina
Graphic Artist: Edgar P. Patricio
Design: Cacti and Succulents

Rebutia sp. (Photo by Johann Espiritu)
Genus of mostly clump forming, spherical to columnar, perrenical cacti with flowers produced in profusion from plat bases, usually 2-3 years after raising from seeds. Much ribbed tuberculate, green stems have short spines.

Turbinicarpus alonsoi (Photo by Johann Espiritu; plant in the collection of Kevin Belmonte)
From Guanajuato, Mexico. First described in 1996 and named after its discover, a Mexican boy named Alonso. It is one of the most beautiful and distinct members of the Genus Turbinicarpus, a group of rare and small sized, globular cacti with spines which are usually papery, hairy or feathery and found only in Mexico. The plants have beautiful flowers. T. alonsoi is solitary, possesses a large tap root, is globose greyish-green or glaucous with a flattened top. In the wild, it grows partly underground, and attains a size of up to 4.4 inches long (11cm), 2.4 to 3.6 inches in diameter (6 to 9cm). The spines are weak and generally falloff from the older tubercles of the plant. T. alonsoi generally flowers from March to October, mainly between April and June. The flowers are cherry red to pink-magenta, with a more intensely coloured mid-stripe.

Mammilaria sp. (Photo by Johann Espiritu)
Most are native to Mexico, some are native from southwestern USA, Caribbean, Central America or even a couple in northern South America. In their range you can find Mammillarias from sea level to high elevations. They also vary in size from miniature 1 inch in diameter (2.5cm) to columnar types 1 foot tall (30cm). In general the Mammillarias bloom easily, but many species need a rest period in winter during which they are kept cool in order to bloom. Furthermore, flowers form a ring on.tissue grown the previous growing season, so it is important to get them to grow every year, which means regular watering and fertilizing during their growing period.

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Stamps, Souvenir Sheets and Official First Day Covers will be available starting 5 December 2003 at the Philatelic Service, Door 203, Liwasang Bonifacio, 1000 Manila and all Regional Offices of the Philippine Postal Corporation.

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