CactiGuide.comcactus forum
cactus home cactus identification cactus tech care for your cactus learn more about cactus
cactus nomenclature where cactus grow cactus forum cacti pests and diseases why I grow cactus

Snowfella's cactus trials

This is a place for members to post on-going topics about their plants and experiences.

Moderator: hob

Snowfella's cactus trials

Postby SnowFella » Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:55 am

Being a beginner with a new and growing collection I guess it's about right that I start up a thred here rather than clog other parts of the forum with every new addition.
Keep in mind though that the flowering season just about are over here downunder, only cactuses I expect to still come out in bloom are the christmas cactuses.

Start up with my "free" cactuses growing outdoors and not under roof.
Image
Temporary garden bed that I did in the last few weeks.

Image
Half wine barrel with some cactuses and a triangle palm for shade that's been subjected to the elements for a few months now. One has grown quite a bit, one got sunburnt and one has been flowering constantly for well over a month now.

Image
The day I planted them out in December

Image
Flowering little Mammillaria Sheldonii in the wine barrel.

Image
Small bed in the corner of my pool enclosure, everything there seems to grow like crazy.

Image
Same spot around june/july last year.

Then for the ones living under roof at the moment.

Image
Had to move my growing shelf the other day as they wasn't getting enough light so I lined them all up for a group photo. The 3 single pad opuntiads (2 O. cacanapa and one O. stricta) are currently rooting. The stricta will never be set free though as it's classed as a weed down here.

ImageImage
2 "ornamental" groups on the outdoor table. That grafted Gymno has been flowing constantly all summer and still has buds coming up aswell as offsets on every rib.

Image
Repotted my O. microdasys the other day and spotted this new growth coming up. Didn't want to ruin my potting gloves with glochnids so I tested double gloving using some of the wife's surgical gloves, worked perfectly :D

ImageImage
2 pots of christmas cactuses underneath the awning.

Image
Last year as one of them was out in bloom, at one stage it loked all white from a distance.

Image
And the odd one out under the awning, a Burro's tail (Sedum morgaianum) that finally is starting to recover after a fall when the pot broke free from the hanger. Nearly reached the ground before it fell. :cry:

ImageImage
Latest purchases.
Notocactus buiningii, Lobivia ? and Mammillaria zeilmanniana.

That's it for now though there likely will be additions to the family tomorrow as the wife as agreed on allowing me a visit to the local cactus nursery :D

Edit: and one that I wish was in my yard but currently life's in a tree in the neighbours yard.

ImageImage
Flowered 3 times now in the last 2 months, first time it was atleast 10 flowers all at once.
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby fanaticactus » Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:44 pm

Very nice collection--very neat & tidy. From my limited experience growing cacti in large containers, but based on what I've read here & elsewhere, just be sure those smaller ones in the half rain barrel don't get too much water; there's a lot of soil there for small roots. Good luck with all of them during your winter & keep us posted with new developments. Have fun shopping for more at the nursery!
Catch a falling star--but don't try it with a cactus!
fanaticactus
 
Posts: 2596
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 7:44 pm
Location: Grand Isle Co., Vermont

Postby SnowFella » Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:01 pm

Thanks

Funny you should mention the water situation for the ones in the wine barrel. I thought they all were going to drown the day after I planted them out, had a freak rain/hail storm hit that dumped a reported 30mm of rain in just 15 minutes. Luckily just smallish hail and not like the hail we saw in 2008 that was near tennisball sized.
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby fanaticactus » Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:12 pm

Back here, we've been hearing about the terrible weather Australia's been having the last couple of weeks. The cyclones seem to more plentiful this year. I think the worst hit areas are NOT where you are, so let's hope you can remain relatively protected from the real bad stuff.
Catch a falling star--but don't try it with a cactus!
fanaticactus
 
Posts: 2596
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 7:44 pm
Location: Grand Isle Co., Vermont

Postby SnowFella » Fri Feb 25, 2011 2:16 am

Yeah, luckily (for me that is) the worst has hit up north and not down here around Sydney. Won't say it can't happen but a cyclone getting this far south is VERY unlikely to happen.

Anyways, back from the nursery with today's haul.

Image
Front row left to right: Mammillaria bocasana, Echinopsis sp, Mammillaria carmenae, Mammillaria fuscohamata
Back row: Opuntia microdasys contorta, Oreocereus celcianus, Mammillaria rhodantha, Echinocactus grusonii albispinus
And behind them an Epiphyllum hybrid.
3 small ones at the front without labels in the pots are going to the oldest granddaughter as last time she was here she asked when she could get some cactuses of her own. :D

Closeups of 2 of them
ImageImage

Was aiming to get a stack of the medium sized ones but instead came home with just 2 of that size since the wife talked me into getting the 2 larger ones. lol
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby daiv » Fri Feb 25, 2011 5:23 am

Great collection. I also wonder about the combo of palm and cactus. I think the palm will want more water than the cactus so either the cactus will get too much or the palm will not have enough. Can't say I have much palm experience, however.

The neighbor's Hylocereus is pretty awesome. Surely thy would give you a cutting to start your own, no?
All Cacti are succulents, but not all succulents are Cacti
User avatar
daiv
Site Admin
 
Posts: 23597
Joined: Mon Aug 16, 2004 10:15 pm
Location: Long Prairie, MN

Postby SnowFella » Fri Feb 25, 2011 6:33 am

To be honest the cactuses in that barrel was an afterthought, it was originally planted with the palm and some strawberry plants in regular potting soil. Strawberry plants didn't survive my infrequent watering during the really hot weather we had but the palmtree took off nicely. So when I put the cactuses in I dug out the soil near a foot deep around the palm and swapped it out for cacti/succulent mix combined with sand, with alittle gravel between the 2 mixes, so the theory (least in my mind lol) is that any water should drain quickly through the soil the cactuses are in, through the gravel layer and then into the soil where the palm has it's roots in.
So far it's worked alright even throught some massive rainfalls combined with heawaves we've had in the last months, palmtree is kicking up new leaves constantly and even the little M. gracilis monstrose I have there isn't rotting. The test will be the winter rain and colder temperatures though.

As for the neighbours Hylocereus, I'd ask for a cutting if I acctually knew them. lol For some funny reason folks down here are obsessed by privacy and just about every house is surrounded by 2 meter high fences.
Image
Good example of it, taken when we were checking the house out before buying it in 2009.
Previous house we were renting we had stayed near 8 years in and some of the neighbours on the other side of one of those fences I had never even seen :lol:
Plus I'm not even sure they know what they have growing out in the backyard, from what I have seen the Hylo has no connection with the ground and seem to originate from 2 forks in the tree a few meters up from the ground. Guessing it could of been naturally sown by local sulphur-crested cockatoos that roost there during summer nights.
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby SnowFella » Fri Feb 25, 2011 10:29 am

Oh, and I might add in here that it turns out I still have cactuses I didn't even know was still alive.
Talked to my parents back home in Sweden the other day and it turns out most of the cactuses I had in my old room and apartment as a teenager/bachelor are still alive and growing. :D
Be very interesting to see what they are like 10 or so years later when I go back for holidays later on in the year! Shame though that there is no way for me to bring them with me downunder once the holidays are over :cry:
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby Tony » Fri Feb 25, 2011 1:35 pm

Great looking collection you have there Snowfella!
I like all the newbies too. :)

The fencing you have is typical for southern california backyards, folks like their privacy here as well.
Now where my family lives in and around Pennsylvania, there are no fences anywhere, except maybe to keep animals out of vegetable gardens.
You can just walk right through everyones backyards. I found that very strange the first time I visited, but its cool because everyone knows each other.
On the other hand, my sister lives in Garland Texas. Many of the fences around the backyards of the houses go all the way up to the roof on the houses, they really like their privacy in texas.
Forget the dog...Beware of the plants!!!

Tony
User avatar
Tony
 
Posts: 10770
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2005 2:56 am
Location: Chino, Ca, USA (zone 10)

Postby iann » Fri Feb 25, 2011 4:31 pm

Looks good. I'm not sure how much winter rain you have, or how cold, so maybe you'll have to protect some of them a bit.
--ian
iann
 
Posts: 15644
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2006 11:10 pm
Location: England

Postby paul280981 » Sat Feb 26, 2011 2:47 am

Hi,

It's good to have a fellow Australian on the forum as well. I'm in Melbourne (south of Sydney) and we have copped massive amounts of rain over this summer. We also copped the tail end of the cyclone which dumped yet more rain on an already soaked state.

I like the barrell set up you have there. Can you move it around, or is it too heavy?

Have you thought about a greenhouse for winter? Although Sydney seem to have milder winters compared to us.

Cactus can become quite addictive for some reason as I'm sure you're finding out. A really nice collection though!! I wouldn't mind putting a few of mine in a barrel set up simlar to the one you have there.
So I bought another cactus today.... don't tell the missus!!
User avatar
paul280981
 
Posts: 139
Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2010 11:40 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Postby SnowFella » Sat Feb 26, 2011 6:10 am

Cheers.

Don't really have anything planned for winter in the ways of protection for the outdoors living cactuses. If I get losses from cold or rot then I'm just going to have to live with it as the ultimate plan is to create a self sustaining cactus patch in the backyard. So everything that's planted outdoors now are on a trial basis, if they live through winter then they get moved to the bed that still only is in planning stages and if they die then I move on with other cactuses.
Got a few other varieties that I'm planning on buying and testing aswell.
With the average temps and rain we get here during summer/winter I'm keeping my fingers crossed that most will make it though.
Lowest recorded temperature during winter is a balmy -1.6C and rainfall seems to go down during the colder months. Guess that's due to getting plenty of afternoon thunderstorms here during summer, something that hardly ever happen during winter.
http://www.weatherzone.com.au/climate/station.jsp?lt=site&lc=67113

Ofcource some will never get put out though as I already know they likely wouldn't survive so they will stay underneath the awning for now....mentioned the word greenhouse to the wife yesterday and all I got back was a blank stare..lol
Right now the only protection I've got is some removable shadecloth over the ones I planted out most recently. Try to limit their exposure to avoid sunburn, ofcource I forgot to put it back up this morning before going to work and some of the small ones show signs of sunburn. :(

@Paul: Indeed nice to see another aussie in here.
I might be able to move that winebarrel....if I had a forklift to do it with! :lol: It's half of a "proper" 200 something litre barrel so you can imagine how much soil it took to fill it, from memory I had to dump something like 6 bags of potsoil into it to get it filled. I'd hazard a guess that it weighs in at well over 100kg dry.
And I class it as proper because I acctually know it was used for wine before Bunnings got their hands on it and cut it in half. Was the only barrel they had for sale when I picked it up that was stained red on the inside and smelled strongly of wine :lol:
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby Thord Håkansson » Sat Feb 26, 2011 11:25 am

So,are you an aussie or a swede living in Australia?
Thord- from Sweden
Thord Håkansson
 
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2010 8:55 am
Location: Stockholm, Sweden

Postby SnowFella » Sat Feb 26, 2011 11:56 am

Swede living in Australia.
Born and raised for the first 24 or so years of my life in Sandviken, Gästrikland. Escaped the cold 10 years ago now and moved down here as the wife's Australian.
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Postby SnowFella » Sun Feb 27, 2011 10:13 am

Thinking about those fences, having grown up where a fence what thigh height these tall one are alittle overkill. But I have to admit having them that tall especially around the pool area is nice for privacy...plus I'm sure one of the neighbours that have a weird plant, got these odd serrated 7 bladed leaves :lol: , growing out on the back veranda appreciate the fences too!

Ans cactus related, call me a nerd or just obsessed but I've been keeping track of my columnars growth over the last 2 months. Everything bar one of the 2 C. peruvianus has put on pretty decent growth, wondering if that odd one out has terminated or just isn't happy.
One C. peruvians has put on 8cm in 2 months, C. strausii in the winebarrel another 8cm, the T. Bridgesii 3cm in just a month but the high performer has to be my T. pachanoi with 8cm's growth since 2nd February. Might of given that one a cm or 2 extra growth when I planted it out though but I think it was planted out at the same depth it was in the pot. :lol:
Going to keep on tracking them once a month and see how they go
User avatar
SnowFella
 
Posts: 1701
Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 4:27 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Next

Return to Member Topics

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests