January 2008

Photography31 Jan 2008 11:59 am

I got a new camera, and before trying it out in macro mode on plants, I took a picture of a bottle.<br /><br /><img width="432" hspace="5" height="324" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/misc/bottle.jpg" /><br /><br />I hope you like it. The original photo is a humongous file, since it’s a 10mp camera. Here, let me zoom in….<br /><br /><img width="432" hspace="5" height="404" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/misc/bottle2.jpg" /><br /><br />Oy, that’s close up. You can really see the dust collecting on it. Where’s my dust rag? Let me get that…<br /><br />

Photography31 Jan 2008 07:54 am

<img width="335" hspace="5" height="432" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/cactus/grant04.jpg" /><br /><br />Grant Street<br />Echeveria<br /><br />

Questions30 Jan 2008 03:24 pm

The <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1807&amp;entry_id=1619" title="http://www.lvrj.com/home_and_garden/14177812.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.lvrj.com/home_and_garden/14177812.html';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Las Vegas Review Journal</a> takes a question about cactus.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Q: In my neighborhood is a house with three large saguaro cacti. They are at least 30 feet tall and very big around. One of the huge ones is splitting. What should be done?<br />
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A: Splitting of saguaro cactus is most likely due to frequent overwatering. These cacti have ridges and furrows running vertically along with their trunks and stems so that they can expand and contract like an accordion.<br />
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When water is available, saguaro cactus stems expand with stored water. When water is no longer available from the roots, stored water in the trunk and limbs is used for survival, ultimately causing the trunks and stems to contract.<br />
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Applying water frequently never gives the trunk and stems a chance to contract. As it grows, the already-expanded trunk splits.<br />
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Water these plants less often. They are shallow rooted, so water them deeply and apply it quite a distance away from the trunk. This will help keep the trunk sturdy and prevent it from possibly falling over. Watering this large cactus close to the trunk could be dangerous.<br />
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Another possibility is bacterial necrosis, but the split would be foul smelling with ooze coming from it and flies attracted to it.<br />
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There is nothing you can do about a split saguaro. It should heal on its own if you follow good irrigation practices.</span><br /></div><br />

News30 Jan 2008 11:22 am

They have cactus classes in Oklahoma, it turns out, so they can’t be all bad. The <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1806&amp;entry_id=1618" title="http://newsok.com/article/3196235" onmouseover="window.status=’http://newsok.com/article/3196235′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Oklahoman</a> has a story.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><img width="180" hspace="5" height="224" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/misc/cactuswoman1.jpg" /><br /></div><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Joyce Hochtritt of Midwest City, a member of the Central Oklahoma Cactus and Succulent Society, tends to cactus plants. She began collecting cactuses when she was 8. By Jim Beckel, The Oklahoman</span><br /></div><br />

Berkeley Succulents30 Jan 2008 09:03 am

<img width="287" hspace="5" height="432" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/cactus/arlington01.jpg" /><br /><br />Arlington Ave.<br />Aloe arborescens. It’s a good time of year for the winter-blooming aloes.<br /><br />

News29 Jan 2008 03:16 pm

The <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1805&amp;entry_id=1617" title="http://newsok.com/article/3196242/1201138138" onmouseover="window.status=’http://newsok.com/article/3196242/1201138138′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Oklahoman</a> recommends a few cactus in your tabletop garden in the Sooner State. (That is Oklahoma, isn’t it? I think so, but who can know for sure. Maybe it’s the Buckeye State or the Wheelbarrow State.)<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Close your eyes and visualize an early spring, a trickling stream and fragrant, fresh blooms….<br />
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Create a cheerful early spring garden in your kitchen window with flowering bulbs…. Balance a paper-white narcissus, hyacinth or crocus on the rim of a glass or narrow vase with just the roots in water…. A few blossoms on a single stem of freesia will add fragrance and color indoors and should last for weeks in a cool setting.<br />
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The thought of growing a delicate orchid could cause a new gardener to opt for a cactus garden.</span><br /></div><br />Oh. So they’re not telling you to add cactus to your tabletop garden after all, those crazy Oklahomans.<br /><br />

Questions29 Jan 2008 11:07 am

Q: Can cactus be found growing in Oregon’s nature or are the conditions not right? Hopefully you could align me with some hikes but I’m still a bit doubtful it even exists.<br />
Thank You,<br />
Andrew<br /><br />A: Andrew,<br />
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There are several species of Opuntia as well as other genus of Cacti (Pediocactus and others) that grow throughout Eastern Oregon. I have seen Opuntia fragilis as well as a much larger mystery prickly pear (Opuntia polyacantha?) while hiking in the hills south and well east of Salem… but that was about twenty years ago… so other than to tell you it was somewhere way up &quot;Thomas Creek&quot; if my memory is not confusing that hike with where the best rope swing and swimming hole is…<br />
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You should check with the Oregon Cactus &amp;Succulent Society:<br />
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Meets: Sacred Heart Villa, 3911 SE Milwaukee, Portland, Oregon. 7pm every 3rd Thursday (except December, June, July, and August when meetings, locations, and times will be announced.<br />
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They should be able to tell you where to hike to see some of the native cacti.<br />
Good Luck,<br />
Hap<br /><br />

Berkeley Succulents29 Jan 2008 10:02 am

<img width="432" hspace="5" height="324" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/cactus/marin01.jpg" /><br /><br />Marin Ave.<br />Aeonium garden and a great Agave lophantha.<br /><br />

Blogs28 Jan 2008 02:42 pm

A writer and/or photographer, <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1799&amp;entry_id=1607" title="http://itofoto.wordpress.com/2008/01/20/cactus-land-1/" onmouseover="window.status=’http://itofoto.wordpress.com/2008/01/20/cactus-land-1/';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">ItoFoto</a>, goes to a writing retreat and finds cactus all over the place. Photos follow. Agave, Aloe and more.<br /><br />

Questions28 Jan 2008 01:05 pm

Q: Hello. I bought a Macodes petula orchid from you about a year ago. I am having a hard time finding information about how to care for it online. It has not grown much and doesn’t usually have more than two leaves. Is this normal? I am watering once a week, and I keep it out of direct sun but in a somewhat lighted place. Can it get too cold near a window?<br />
Anyway, if you can give me any care instructions for it I would be extremely grateful! It is one of my favorite plants.<br />
Thank you!<br />
Tasha<br /><br />A: Tasha,<br />
These are a tricky plant. We find they often will have only 2 to 3 leaves, with old ones dying as new ones grow. Generally, they want bright indirect light only. Water once a week, letting it drain. And mist the leaves every 2-3 days. If it is near a window in winter, keep it at least 4&quot; from the glass.<br />
If it’s been a year, now would be a good time to fertilize with something like liquid kelp (actually 2-3 times per year would be good). You may also want to use a bloom food in March. And repotting into fresh orchid soil yearly is always a good idea.<br />
Peter<br /><br /><br />

Nursery28 Jan 2008 10:59 am

Did I tell you that the nursery is reopening this Friday, Feb. 1? 10:00am, rain or shine. It’s been a very busy January, indeed. We’ve loaded up the nursery with all kinds of new plants and tools and fertilizers and bird feeders and other stuff too. Are you getting our monthly email? No? <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1804&amp;entry_id=1612" title="http://www.cactusjungle.com/contact.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.cactusjungle.com/contact.html';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Then go here and sign up</a>, for gosh sakes, and you’ll be just in time to get our February email later this week.<br /><br />

Questions27 Jan 2008 10:56 am

They got them a lot of ants in Florida.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Q: One of my cactuses has ants in the container, and I would like to get them out without using pesticides. What should I do?<br />
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A: Ants don’t like water, so a good soaking should get them out of the pot. Perhaps this is best done outdoors in an area where you don’t want an ant explosion. Dunk the cactus’s pot with root ball under water for about five minutes. The unhappy ants should scurry to the surface. When you think all the ants are out, set the ant-free cactus out to drain before giving it a permanent location.</span><br /></div><br />Those clever devils at the <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1803&amp;entry_id=1611" title="http://www.orlandosentinel.com/features/food/orl-docsun1308jan13,0,7389558.column" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.orlandosentinel.com/features/food/orl-docsun1308jan13,0,7389558.column';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Orlando Sentinel</a>. What will they think of next. <span style="font-style: italic;">Dunking</span>.<br /><br />

Misc26 Jan 2008 11:52 am

They have a strange set of interests in Colorado. They go to the desert and they find a toaster. Then they write an entire article about the toaster and print it in the newspaper. I’m not shocked, after all, since Coloradans are living pretty high. From the <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1802&amp;entry_id=1610" title="http://dailycamera.com/news/2008/jan/17/head-southwest-for-saguaros-singletrack/" onmouseover="window.status=’http://dailycamera.com/news/2008/jan/17/head-southwest-for-saguaros-singletrack/';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Boulder Daily Camera</a>.<br /><br style="font-style: italic;" /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;"><img width="384" hspace="5" height="512" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/misc/G0117TUCSON.jpg" /><br />An old toaster decorated with cactus is part of the folk art adorning the Fantasy Island riding area in Tucson, Ariz.<br />
Photo by Marty Caivano</span><br /></div><br />That’s a nice toaster.<br /><br />

Blogs25 Jan 2008 03:41 pm

<a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1798&amp;entry_id=1606" title="http://elysiummcc.blogspot.com/2008/01/never-sunset-in-tucson.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://elysiummcc.blogspot.com/2008/01/never-sunset-in-tucson.html';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">A Work in Progress visits Tucson</a> and takes a lot of family portait style pictures of Saguaros. It seems like a reasonable thing to be doing.<br /><br />

Whippets25 Jan 2008 02:34 pm

<img width="432" hspace="5" height="324" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/whippets/benjamin_and_amica_turn_5.jpg" /><br /><br />Benjamin and Amica at Pt. Isabel last week on the occasion of their 5th birthdays, before the storms moved in.<br /><br />

National Parks25 Jan 2008 09:49 am

The <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1801&amp;entry_id=1609" title="http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/arizonaliving/articles/0118quicktrip0118.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/arizonaliving/articles/0118quicktrip0118.html';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Arizona Republic visits</a> their local National Park, Saguaro National Park, and comes away the better for it.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Even if you haven’t been to the western part of this park, you can imagine what it looks like. Massive stands of the namesake cactus are everywhere.<br />
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But fewer people are familiar with the park’s Rincon Mountain District, 30 miles east of the more visited Tucson Mountain District.<br />
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There are fewer saguaros in the eastern section, but it’s thick with other cactuses: cholla, prickly pear, barrel, hedgehog.</span><br /></div><br />There are some nice back roads too. It’s all so dense with so many different types of cactus you could just collapse from all the spiny goodness.<br /><br />

Misc24 Jan 2008 03:44 pm

<a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1800&amp;entry_id=1608" title="http://houstonist.com/2008/01/18/houstonist_bart_51.php" onmouseover="window.status=’http://houstonist.com/2008/01/18/houstonist_bart_51.php';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Houstonist finds a recipe</a> for a cactus juice cocktail that contains prickly pear fruit juice, and of course tequila.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Houstonist is heading to Big Bend National Park this weekend to participate in our annual camping extravaganza…<br />
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This year, we decided that it was time to "live off of the land" and "leverage" available natural resources. What’s plentiful in West Texas besides sand and sun? That’s right – cactususes. [We know cacti is correct, but cactususes is more betterer. So, deal.]…</span><br /></div><br />Recipe after the break….<br /><br /><br /><a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/archives/1608-guid.html#extended">Continue reading "Drink Your Cactus"</a>

Blogs24 Jan 2008 02:39 pm

An Indian gardening blog, <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1797&amp;entry_id=1605" title="http://sliceoftheday.wordpress.com/2008/01/23/blue-agave-agave-tequilana/" onmouseover="window.status=’http://sliceoftheday.wordpress.com/2008/01/23/blue-agave-agave-tequilana/';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Slice of the Day</a>, tells you everything you need to know about Agave and tequila.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Archaeologists say the agave has been cultivated for at least 9,000 years.</span><br /></div><br />

Berkeley Succulents24 Jan 2008 10:42 am

<img width="324" hspace="5" height="432" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/cactus/oxford06.jpg" /><br /><br />Oxford Street<br />Aloe arborescens<br /><br />

News24 Jan 2008 08:41 am

New York theater audiences are feasting on cactus and goat curry, according to <a href="http://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1796&amp;entry_id=1602" title="http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601088&sid=aCtBcClsLWjg&refer=muse" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601088&sid=aCtBcClsLWjg&refer=muse';return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">bloomberg.com theater</a> critics and food afficionados. Delicious!<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;"><span style="font-weight: bold;"> Brick Lane Curry House</span> has a London Underground sign for a logo, a tribute to its namesake street in the British capital, home to many curry restaurants….<br />
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Plump shrimp were cooked in a spicy coconut curry; goat was simmered in sweetish, creamy gravy tinged with saffron. <br />
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<span style="font-weight: bold;">La Palapa</span>, named for the thatch-roofed huts that dot the coast of Mexico, is a festive space decorated with pottery, old maps of Mexico and a sunburst made from bronze stalks of corn….<br />
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Catfish is baked in a corn husk with <span style="font-weight: bold;">chunks of cactus</span>, jalapenos and pungent epazote leaves ($8.95).</span><br /></div><br />Oh, so the cactus and the goat curry aren’t in the same dish…. Now I get it. It’s the cactus and catfish together. I didn’t think the goat cactus combo sounded so good.<br /><br />

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