Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

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iaeen
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Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by iaeen »

I have heard from several sources now that "The Cactus Family" is the book to have for cactus enthusiasts, but as we all know, it is unfortunately out of print. Does anyone know of a more available (read: more affordable) alternative that gives a good rundown on cacti along the same lines as Anderson?
DaveW
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by DaveW »

Affordable is not a word I would use for specialist books on cacti. Coffee table picture books on the subject may be cheap, but authoratative works are usually pretty expensive. You may be able to pick up out of print books secondhand on EBAY etc, or from secondhand dealers online, but such works often sell secondhand for more than they did new.

Andersons single volume work was very good on N. American cacti but left a little to be desired on S. American ones. I think it's successor, also based on the IOS classification, the two volume "New Cactus Lexicon" was also more expensive. It is also out of print now.

The cheaper cut down illustrations volume containing just the pictures without the plant descriptions is still available I think.

http://keithsplantbooks.co.uk/details.a ... or=Hunt+ed" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The latest work is that of Joel Lode, but it is in two volumes and fairly expensive. It adopts a "splitters" classification and dismantles many of the genera David Hunt lumped in the New Cactus Lexicon:-

http://cactus-aventures.com/Taxonomy_of ... e_ENG.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

http://cactus-aventures.com/Taxonomy/DetailENG.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The cost of printing and distributing books is one of the reasons so much is going online these days.
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adetheproducer
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by adetheproducer »

Anderson the cuctus family is available as a pdf online if you do some searching. It's a pretty good book although I don't necessarily agree with the classification but useful none the less.
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DaveW
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by DaveW »

https://www.scribd.com/doc/151680749/Th ... F-Anderson" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

https://3bcd2daa-a-62cb3a1a-s-sites.goo ... edirects=0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

http://twitpic.com/aketm9" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Seemingly even the New Cactus Lexicon illustrations volume is online. How legitimate these downloads are though I am unaware.

http://www.read4freebooks.com/recommend ... ustrations" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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leland
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by leland »

Sadly, the answer to your question is no, there are no current, economical, comprehensive book available on the whole cactus family. Gone are the days of buying Anderson on Amazon for $69!

The cost of printing such huge volumes with so many pictures for relatively small press runs makes it impossible. Just the shipping alone of 15 lb. volumes can be considerable. Maybe we will get lucky and one of the publishers will make regional volumes so one could buy the volume of most interest.

Less comprehensive volumes are available form http://www.exoticplantbooks.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; and others. These may be great for somebody doing field work in a specific region, but not for somebody building a collection from different areas of the world.

Also note, that as new information arises and is interpreted by different authors, the nomenclature changes. For some plants, Anderson, Hunt, and Lode will have 3 different names. Cacti-guide has remained loyal to the Anderson nomenclature, so it can be used as a point of reference to the others.

On of my projects long overdue is to cross-reference the 30 plus species of Nicaraguan cacti, with 4 columns--Anderson, Hunt, Lode, and older names still in common use, especially on CITES lists. When I get a chance to brings my Lode books down from the US I can start working on this list.
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by DaveW »

How long specialist paper books of limited runs will continue is debatable. As Ieland says they are expensive to produce and out of date as soon as printed, if not before since the manuscript goes to the printer quite some time before publication. Even the Encyclopedia Britannica has now ceased a print version through being too expensive and gone online, where it can be quickly updated:-

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2012/ ... ublication" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Other books will go onto CD or memory sticks in future, or just be downloadable by subscription onto your computer etc in to avoid the cost of printing and binding. Also online journals are taking the place of printed ones too for the same reasons, that of printing and distribution costs.

The single volume Anderson book was the first to use the IOS classification, which was really worked up in Hunts two volume "The New Cactus Lexicon", (Britton and Rose's "The Cactaceae" took four volumes and Backeberg's "Die Cactaceae took six volumes to cover a then much smaller known Cactaceae in their days).

Hunt rather than Anderson was the one really behind the IOS classification. Anderson's and Hunt's books were really based on a morphological classification decided by an IOS committee, which also drew up the CITES check lists, whereas DNA Sequencing later showed a lot of the lumping of genera they used was erroneous.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classific ... _Cactaceae" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

To be comprehensive Ieland you really need to add Britton and Rose and Backeberg to your list.

There will always be some luxurious aurthoritative printed books, but as in the early days of print these will become more and more collectors editions and luxury items beyond most peoples finances, again reserved for the libraries of the aristocracy and rich.
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by leland »

B and R is a charming book from the historical point of view, It can be had free online or for very little on ebay in the 4 volumes in 2 books print version. I particularly like the line drawings and original descriptions but a century old scientific book is limited.
Anderson is online free, I do not know if Mr. Anderson's heirs released the copyright but it is available from several sources. Hunts works, including the volume 2 paperback appear to be out of print. Lode's more recent book is available, in 3 languages no less, for around $200.

I agree with your thoughts that DVD or online download are the only way forward.

Another limitation of print books, again usually revolving around cost, is that to properly display a species, you need multiple photos such as juvenile, mature, flower, fruit seeds, etc. , and this would only be cost effective in electronic format.
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by DaveW »

The problem with the New Cactus Lexicon is it lacks a decent synonymy, unlike Backeberg's Die Cactaceae, or Britton & Rose. Lode produced a separate synonymy but it is incorrect in some cases. As I recall he sank Neoporteria wagenknechtii v. napina under N. napina, which is an entirely different plant. N. wagenknechtii v. napina is simply a tuberous rooted form of N. wagenknechtii, whereas N. napina is a "Thelocephala".

You can download Lode's synonyms list here:-

http://cactus-aventures.com/Taxonomy_of ... errata.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

He has printed a page of corrections at the end that did not apear in the original synonymy sent out with the books themselves.

I have the 6 volume Die Cactaceae (in German) if you don't have it and need anything from it Ieland, so can scan it if needed.
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by DaveW »

Both Anderson and the New Cactus Lexicon are evidently still available in the UK, either second hand or new, but still expensive (often more than the original cost) since now out of print. However these books usually never get reprinted.

You need to scroll down the list.

http://www.keithsplantbooks.co.uk/Recen ... tm?Books=C" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by 7george »

It is kind of old but still very useful:

Image
https://b-ok.cc/book/2372573/fe151b?dsource=recommend
Free for download.
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by phil_SK »

DaveW wrote: Sat Oct 15, 2016 10:18 amI have the 6 volume Die Cactaceae (in German) if you don't have it and need anything from it Ieland, so can scan it if needed.
It's available as a pdf at https://cactuspro.com/biblio/en:accueil I would really recommend this resurce - there are some fantastic books and journals here. They've made an effort to seek permission to reproduce works from authors and publishers and have only reproduced them without permission where all efforts to trace an owner have failed (Backeberg's Die Cactaceae falls into this category). You won't find dodgy copies of NCL or The Cactus Family there.
One other resource that hasn't been mentioned yet is mostly just a list of names but represents an update of those used in the New Cactus Lexicon. It's the third edition of the CITES Cactaceae Checklist and a supplement. They are available at https://www.kew.org/science/our-science ... -resources (scroll don to 'succulents'). There's a bit of a fudge in that there are accepted names and alternative names (as well, of course, as lots of synonyms). The reasoning behind this is explained in the introduction but was basically a move towards a reclassification of lots of plants based on post-2005 information without causing confusion for the CITES permit system. I use this nearly as much as my copy of the NCL.
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by Pereskiopsisdotcom »

One thing I find nearly absent in most cacti books is growing advice for your own home environment whether indoors or outdoors. Most of the books will discuss cacti in habitat, but the majority of the books are read like checklists for a collection. And that makes sense because their goal is taxonomy and classification. Just don't forget that. Anderson's book actually has a rather enjoyable introduction discussing growing cacti and some of their human connectivity but is not something you couldn't find online. I love books and wish I could own more, but very often I find growing blogs and posts on forums like this to be more helpful in growing.
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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by eduart »

Pereskiopsisdotcom wrote: Mon May 25, 2020 1:11 pm One thing I find nearly absent in most cacti books is growing advice for your own home environment whether indoors or outdoors.
Well, we have too many variables here - you can list here all factors involved in cactus cultivation. Except for dummy advice on some websites or popular books, no serious author will try to advise readers from say Sweden, France, Greece, Australia, Brazil and Canada at the same time... it's simply not possible. And of course no one will risk. I am not even mentioning the particular needs of different species. There is no formula to all inclusive. I have only one shortcut: check with an experienced grower in your area.

I moved almost 20 years ago from Romania to New Zealand and I had to forget (almost) everything I knew and start again.

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Re: Alternatives to Anderson's "The Cactus Family"

Post by Pereskiopsisdotcom »

eduart wrote: Mon May 25, 2020 10:10 pm
Pereskiopsisdotcom wrote: Mon May 25, 2020 1:11 pm One thing I find nearly absent in most cacti books is growing advice for your own home environment whether indoors or outdoors.
Well, we have too many variables here - you can list here all factors involved in cactus cultivation. Except for dummy advice on some websites or popular books, no serious author will try to advise readers from say Sweden, France, Greece, Australia, Brazil and Canada at the same time... it's simply not possible. And of course no one will risk. I am not even mentioning the particular needs of different species. There is no formula to all inclusive. I have only one shortcut: check with an experienced grower in your area.

I moved almost 20 years ago from Romania to New Zealand and I had to forget (almost) everything I knew and start again.

Cheers,
Eduart
I agree. There are way too many variables and there is no one formula for all species. And my point is that that is not the intention of these books to be growing guides. That doesn't mean the expectation from the reader, especially a new reader doesn't exist.

To be fair though, there are definitely sound principles of growing from an academic point such as Environmental Biology of Agaves and Cacti by Park S. Nobel or The Cactus Primer by Arthur Gibson and Nobel that discuss at length topics like photosynthetic active radiation which can be applicable to someone hopping to imitate sunlight with grow lights for example.
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Interests include: Rhipsalis, Turbinicarpus, Gymnocalycium, and Lophophora.
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