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Cactus Blog Writers

Peter Lipson
Hap Hollibaugh

61 Cactus Blooms


Dominic sends along this San Pedro photo. Wow! The bees must be going nuts!

I bought this San Pedro cactus from you many years ago. It has bloomed a few times with only a few flowers. This year we got 61 flowers from it!

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Tokidoki Special Edition


It’s the Tokidoki Unicorno Pride Special Edition – It’s a 2-pack!

We sell a lot of the Tokidoki toys, mostly the Cactus Friends and the Unicornos (also spiky!) since we are a spiky kind of nursery kind of place. And now they’ve released a Pride Special Edition?!? And we are in the middle of Pride season here in SF!?!

Awesome. And we have them…

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Knobbly Mesembs


Cute South African succulents in the Mesemb Family, also known as the Iceplant Family, also known as the Living Stone Family. Indeed! To be clear the actual family name is Aizoaceae, Sub-Family Ruschioideae. And yet they’re called Mesembs because at some point in the past the family was called Mesembryanthemaceae. And some will dispute the current family name anyway, and insist these all belong under Ficoidaceae instead. Don’t get me started!

Aloinopsis schooneesii

Small dense clumps of speckled blue-green leaves sit on large tuberous roots, which can be esposed over time to form an unusual bonsai. Yellow flowers in spring.

Titanopsis calcarea

Small clumper forms dense mats of thick open leaves. Winter-growing, keep dry in summer. Grows in limestone strewn areas.

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Winter Succulent Damage


Hi cactus jungle

A few of my cacti have struggled after the rains.

I have attached a photo and I’m wondering if you can tell me what is happening with this plant.

Is it a lost cause😞? If not, how can I help it?

Thank you
Brian

Brian,

The plant is a Euphorbia, and hopefully it is just the tip that got damaged in the winter. Depending on where you live, they are only semi-hardy here in the Bay Area, so they can take damage to the tip when we get below freezing, or with heavy rains, or especially with both (See: This year.)

You can cut the top part off the plant and it looks like the damage is limited there. Cut at an angle, using a bread knife, and make sure the flesh is clean and white. If there is still some rot there, cut lower. Be careful when cutting a Euphorbia as it has a caustic milky-white sap. Where gloves, long sleeves, and eye-protection. Spray the cut end with Hydrogen Peroxide and put a paper bag over it to keep the sun off it until it is healed. Good Luck!

Peter

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Haworthia Questions


Hi Peter
Would you be able to tell me the name of the succulent in the attached?

And perhaps more importantly, what is happening with the dry, papery bits toward the crown? Can this plant be saved? I am not sure what to do next. It was lovely and plump and then this started happening and I am not sure what I did (or am doing)

Much thanks to you!
Ann

Ann,

The plant is a Haworthia. It looks like it’s growing towards sun, maybe not enough sun where it is? It’s doing well since it can handle lower light levels for a succulent, but the result is the long stems with the dried leaves along it. You can pull them off or leave them in place, doesn’t really matter. But it is time to repot into a fresh fast-draining cactus soil and a larger pot.

Peter

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Cactus ID Is Difficult 


Hello!

I recently purchased a cactus to put on my windowsill to brighten up my room a bit, my problem is that I threw away the container right after I repotted it and now I don’t know what it is exactly. Could you help me?

The pot it’s in in this picture is four inches across and the ends of the spines are a dark red color.

Thank you so much!

Emma

Emma,

Hard to know for sure at that size, but I would guess a Gymnocalycium, although my 2nd guess would be a Ferocactus. If it blooms young, it’s probably a Gymnocalycium. Also, it looks like it could use more sun.

Peter

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