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Friedrich Ritter (1898-1989)

Ritter's diaries (Die Ritter Tagebücher)

Under copyright (with persmission of DKG)

Kakteen in Südamerika was written on the basis of the field notes of Ritter. These notes were written in a series of diaries that are proposed below. The first file presents a table of contents in German, the next files are the diaries. Most of the diaries were numbered consecutively by Ritter along the years. Some supplementary files, above 74, have been numbered arbitrarily; they contain various data like tables of contents of previous diaries, FR numbers, details about visited countries, etc.

These diaries provide some useful, new and personal informations that are not reported in Kakteen in Südamerika.



Kakteen in Südamerika

Under copyright

This book is still under copyright. In spite of our efforts it has been impossible to find any interested party. The book is nevertheless proposed owing to its historical interest. A reprint is unlikely since Ritter published the book himself. However, if you can help solving the ownership problem, please contact us.


The book was edited from 1979 to 1981. It is made of 4 volumes, 1692 pages and 1416 illustrations. Friedrich Ritter presents his extensive field work throughout South America and his point of view about cactus classification. Even though the latter is now out of date, the field data and plant descriptions (including many latin diagnoses) are of high interest. Unfortunately, the illustrations are of very bad quality, most in B&W (from color originals!), and they are thus of limited help 1)



Description of flower colors:
Ritter used the Pflanzenfarben Atlas of E. Biesalski to decribe the colours accurately. The chart is based on the German standard DIN 6164. A colour is defined by 3 numbers T, S and D:

  1. The hue, T (for Farbton) is the reference colour (from yellow to green through red and blue).
  2. The saturation, S (for Sättigung) defines the “strength” of the coulour. When S = 0, an image is in black & white.
  3. The shadow (or darkness), D (for Dunkelstufe) defines the brightness. The higher D, the darker the colour (D = 9 is black).

The DIN6164_A0.pdf file gives a sample colour model and the associated T:S:D numbers.

Die von Curt Backeberg in "Descriptiones Cactacearum novarum" veröffentlichten Diagnosen…

Under copyright
This book is still under copyright. In spite of our efforts it has been impossible to find any interested party. The book is nevertheless proposed owing to its historical interest. A reprint is unlikely since Ritter published the book himself. However, if you can help solving the ownership problem, please contact us.


This booklet was edited by Ritter in 1958. Ritter critically comments the “new descriptions” of Backeberg published in Descriptiones Cactacearum novarum. 54 pages of text (German), no picture.

1) The original illustrations should be reprinted, probably from Kew Gardens
2) The file contains a “searchable” layer of interpreted text.
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This project is hosted by cactuspro.com, a web site mainly in French (some pages translated) dedicated to cactus and other succulents.
Cactus and Succulent Plants Digital Library, https://www.cactuspro.com/biblio/