The Epithelantha complex contains small species that are widely distributed from eastern Arizona to Texas and south to San Luis Potosi. The globular stem with its depressed apex is covered with many rows of small tubercles tipped with white spines, set so close together that the green epidermis is hidden. The flowers are pink and develop from the apex. The fruit are elongated bright red pods. These seedlings are full-sized plants in 3-inch pots.