Nursery27 Mar 2014 08:39 am

We had some of our Special Order Pottery just get here this week – A late edition to our Terra Cotta Pottery Sale! Check it out – we have giant terra cotta strawberry pots. Plus cubes and eggs!

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Thru March  30, 2014
30% OFF All Terra Cotta Pottery

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Cactus Jungle Nursery and Garden
1509 4th Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
(510) 558-8650

Open 7 Days
9:00a – 5:00p Weekdays
10:00a – 5:00p Weekends

2014-03-26 17.02.58

Reader Photos26 Mar 2014 10:31 am

Dear Peter,

You may recall that I came in a few weeks ago with some photos of my Agave celsii, which had sent up 7 flower spikes. I was asking what to do now that the spikes were beginning to rot and you suggested taking the whole plant apart, which I did. I managed to rescue three pups, which are now planted and hopefully at least one of them will begin to replace the plant that is no more.

At the time, you asked me to send you some photos, for your blog. I am sorry to have taken so long to get around to this, but here they are.

A few months later, an A. paryii also bloomed – in some ways even more spectacular.

Thanks again for all your help.


Agaves in bloom - 02

And a lot of pictures were sent. Click through to see all of them. (more…)

Berkeley Succulents25 Mar 2014 01:47 pm


Pardee St, Berkeley
Aeonium “Schwartzkopf”

This one has enough rosettes that it will pull through the bloom period just fine, but many would not make it alive after the flowering.

News24 Mar 2014 11:02 am

Wayfair sells miscellaneous home goods type crap and such, and for some reason they wanted to let me know they also have butterfly maps for the US. So here, have a link to their Butterfly Maps for the US.

With Butterfly Pictures too:


It’s an odd thing for that website and I wouldn’t have blogged it but for the pretty pictures. That’s what it takes for me to blog something! Send me a link to pretty pictures!!!!!!!

Plants24 Mar 2014 09:45 am


It’s a tiny little bud on the side of a Pachycereus marginatus! This one is only 4ft tall, we’ve never had one this size bloom!

Now it’s a race to see if it flowers before it sells so I can get a picture.

Nursery21 Mar 2014 12:23 pm

I don’t use this blog to advertise the business very often, but when I do it’s usually to promote our annual pottery sale. You know you can get 30% off all terra cotta pottery right?


Have some pictures of pots!

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Whippets21 Mar 2014 10:07 am


California Native Plants21 Mar 2014 07:22 am


Cercis occidentalis
Western Redbud

Southwestern US/California Native
Evergreen tree

Sun: Full to Partial
Water: Winter rain, summer drought
Size: 20ft.

Careful not to disturb roots when transplanting. Magenta flowers in Spring. From rocky soils at foothills. Bright green kidney-shaped leaves.

News20 Mar 2014 07:01 am

That’s a great idea! We should invent a wifi enabled smartphone plant minder. The devices should cost only $5 per plant, with a base unit that costs about $25. You could connect all your plants to your smartphone for under $100, unless you’re like me and have a lot more plants than that.

You could check the soil moisture and temperature of each plant. You could check the amount of ongoing photosynthesis happening on sunny and cloudy days. You could make sure your roommate isn’t overwatering.


Too bad it doesn’t exist. But this does:

Questions19 Mar 2014 10:34 am

My Sick Euphorbia Lactea

My cactus is sick. A few weeks ago it was fine and beautiful, maybe a few tiny (pin prick or freckle sized) raspberry red dots on it, then – BAM – I looked at it yesterday and could barely believe it was the same plant. I don’t know what to do to treat this plant and protect my other plants.

20140312_190734 20140314_121706

It has strange rings (brown filled with raspberry/pink edges) and brown spreading patches. I’ve already looked online a little and couldn’t find anything like it.

Is it terminal and I should start chopping off branches to try to grow a new plant before the disease spreads to the entire plant? Do I isolate and treat all the plants in the one pot or is this a Euphorbia-only fungus? Isolate all the plants within a ten foot radius?

Also, will I get a response via email or will I have to check the blog? Both?



It looks like a virus from the ring pattern. I don’t know what caused it but it could have been from a sunburn – if the plant was put out into direct sun after having been inside or protected, or if it got turned around. If the infection is on one side of the plant only then that indicates it was caused by a sunburn.

You can try to treat it – I can recommend Oxidate by Biosafe, which is a ready to use disease control, or Neem Oil, both of which we carry. But the prognosis is only 50/50. If the plant survives it will have scarring.

Go ahead and isolate the plant in the meantime.

You can also check out the blog now – the answer is there too. Share with friends!


California Native Plants&Questions18 Mar 2014 08:42 am


Dudleya brittonii, the Giant Chalk Dudleya from Baja California. Now don’t argue with me here – I have an answer for any objections you might have to my answer below.

Q: How do you differentiate between a dudleya and a echeveria?

(via Instagram)


They are very closely related! But Dudleyas are California native and summer dormant, while Echeverias are Mexican and winter dormant. Also Echeveria flowers are more brightly colored.


California Native Plants17 Mar 2014 06:58 am

Rikki and Jordan went hiking yesterday and found some very photogenic succulents.

Dudleya farinosa Pt Reyes

Dudleya farinosa is the most common of the local native Sea Lettuces. Still, the plants are small and often found in rocky crevices, so look for them!

Dudleya farinosa

Thanks Rikki!


Whippets14 Mar 2014 11:11 am



Plants12 Mar 2014 11:15 am

Aeonium Jolly Green

Our newest green Aeonium is “Jolly Green”. Well that’s a festive name. I wonder who decided this particular succulent was festive enough for that name?

It is low growing, staying under a foot tall, and will spread about 4 feet wide. Red edged in sun, more green in shade. Hardy to 25F or so. Maybe below 30F you should throw a frost blanket on it.

Apparently this hybrid has uncertain garden parentage, so we’re not going to make a claim on the species or species.

Plants11 Mar 2014 09:57 am


Leucospermum “Veldfire”

Now that’s an amazing inflorescence  in the Proteaceae family.

4 to 5 feet tall, and from New Zealand? Why do they get all the best pincushions?

Plants10 Mar 2014 12:27 pm


Aeonium undulatum

These only grow about 3 feet tall, but the giant rosette and the wavy leaves are quite distinctive. Full Sun at the coast, but afternoon shade inland for sure.

Questions09 Mar 2014 11:28 am

Your blog came up in a Google image search for plant identification. I was hoping you could tell me a name for attached photo.


Thanks so much,


Well the picture is extra tiny, but I think that’s an Agave attenuata.


Plants08 Mar 2014 09:34 am

People seem to love them some Sedums these days. The low groundcover varieties are very popular right now, and not just in the areas where they’re cold-hardiness is more important than the mild Bay Area climate, but right here in the Bay Area, where our coastal mild climate doesn’t test the hardiness of these Sedums at all, are they also very popular.

I wonder if I got the grammar of that last run-on sentence right? I could reread it and try to fix it, but that would hurt.

Sedum Tricolor

First up is a very colorful Sedum “Tricolor”, one of the S. spurium cultivars.

Sedum Lemon Ball

Check out the tape measure for scale! It’s  Sedum “Lemon Ball”, very chartreuse, stays chartreuse, doesn’t get red in sun, although otherwise superficially similar to S. “Angelina”, one of the S. rupestre cultivars.

Run-on sentences for everyone!

Sedum hispanicum purpurea (2)

Finally we have the not very colorful right now Sedum “Purpurea” although the Sedum “Aureum” is right now the most popular of Sedums, but this one does get purple in sun, but not too much sun or they wilt. And this one is onje of the S. hispanicum cultivars.


Whippets07 Mar 2014 11:12 am


Plants07 Mar 2014 06:45 am

Big fat Dasylirion
Dasylirion wheeleri
Desert Spoon

These never get this tall here in the Bay Area. Generally they can get 6 feet across, but with very little to no trunk at all. These have been growing in Arizona, and it’s true what they say about Arizona – it gets hot. Some plants need extra heat to grow to their full potential.

These plants do look like they want to get out of those pots and into the ground so those roots can ease out a little bit, or a lot….

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