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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

PLANT BEBES // CACTI SPOTLIGHT

Today's focus for my PLANT BEBES series is my CACTI family. I currently only have a trio of cacti but I hope to expand on this collection a lot next Spring. Here is a cacti family portrait:


Aren't they ADORABLE? I think cacti are SO COOL. And there are so many different varieties. The first of my cacti that I want to focus on today is Mammillaria gracilis fragilis or "thimble" cactus. My personal name for her is Thumbelina. And here's her portrait:



I love the new growth that is happening on almost ALL of the buds. I can't wait to see how much she'll grow next Spring. This gal really likes porous soil with good airflow, bright light and very little water. I used a mixture of regular indoor potting soil and perlite. I keep her on the dining room table with some of her buddies, near an east-facing window. I usually give her a thorough watering with cacti liquid plant food once every two weeks [watering until the soil is fully drenched and water starts dripping out of the drainage hole]. I will probably have to cut down to only watering once a month in the winter. She's been doing great and supposedly she will have creamy white flowers in the winter so that will be fun to see.

Next up we have Mammillaria elongata 'Copper King', or, as I call her, Penny:


This gal follows the same care instructions as the "thimble" cactus. Lots of light, porous soil, and little water. I love her copper-colored spines. She hangs out on the fireplace mantle in the living room, so she doesn't get quite as much sunlight as her two sisters but she still thrives. I planted her in a faux mercury glass candle holder because I thought it was cute. But, because there is no drainage hole, I filled the bottom with small pebbles to ensure that she doesn't get over-watered.

Last, but not least, we have Mammillaria mystax, or, as I like to call her, Pom Pom:

I replanted Pom Pom not that long ago so she hasn't quite grown into her pot yet. So cute. I'm hoping next growing season she will expand out quite a bit. Her care instructions are the same as both Thumbelina and Penny and most, if not all, other cacti. She lives on the dining room table, too.

Well, there you have it - my CACTI PLANT BEBES! The next update on these gals will be sometime in March or April, when the next growing season begins. Stay tuned! AND check back on September 3rd for a spotlight on my SUCCULENT FAMILY.

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