When to pricking out cactus seedlings, how to do it correctly, and what potting soil to use

Speaking of cactus sowings, a classic question, and one not infrequently asked with a fair amount of (unnecessary) apprehension, is: after how long should seedlings be repotted? In other words, when do the young seedlings need to be repotted and perhaps divided into individual pots? Again, as with many other “cactophilies matters”, the answer depends on various cultivation factors. Based on experience, however, it is possible to give general indications useful to those who experiment with sowing for the first time.

Let’s see in detail, in this article, everything we need to know about this fundamental step for the proper growth of plants from our sowing. (…)

Per proseguire nella lettura dell'articolo Accedi o Registrati
To continue reading the article LogIn or JoinUs

Repotting cacti: a few tips on how best to do it without… donating blood!

Repotting is often one of the reasons why many people steer clear of cacti. Maybe they like the plant, but the idea that sooner or later it has to be repotted, with all those thorns, frightens those who are new to this kind of plant. Many people even decide to give up on cacti for getting leafy succulents, which are much easier to deal with when repotting. In fact, even particularly prickly plants like Echinocactus grusonii or Ferocactus are not so complicated to repot. A little experience and a few “tricks”, and you can get out of it without literally having to “give blood”.

Let’s see how to proceed and all there is to know about repotting,
especially the most challenging ones due to the plant’s size and the thorns on the stem. (…)

Per proseguire nella lettura dell'articolo Accedi o Registrati
To continue reading the article LogIn or JoinUs

Echinocactus texensis, an in-depth study of the “horse crippler”

The following is an in-depth article on the Echinocactus texensis species that I wrote some time ago and which, with my great pleasure, was published in the Cactus World magazine, published by the British Cactus & Succulents Society (BCSS). My thanks to editor Al Laius for the publication in the prestigious magazine.

Per proseguire nella lettura dell'articolo Accedi o Registrati
To continue reading the article LogIn or JoinUs

The Asclepiadaceae family: African succulents with beautiful but… smelly flowers

Although more than twenty years have passed, I still remember my first encounter with an Asclepiadaceae. A few years ago, I approached the world of succulents, and I went to visit a nursery just outside my city. I had been browsing among the succulents for quite a while when the owner of the nursery, an elderly but very chirpy lady, noticed me and my interests in plants, approached me and said: “Do you want to see a succulent plant with beautiful flowers?” I said yes, of course, I wanted to see it, so she took me down a narrow corridor cluttered with plants and pointed to a large succulent in a hanging pot. It had thick fleshy, straight green stems with reddish edges, and from one of these stems hung a big star-shaped flower with elongated, thin tips and shaded yellow petals crossed by tiny dark streaks. “Come closer, sniff how good it smells”, the lady said to me, passing from a restrained smile to an open, fat laugh, as soon as I obeyed and immediately withdrew, disgusted by the smell of rotting flesh that from that flower had entered right into my nose.

Keep on reading the article (…)

Per proseguire nella lettura dell'articolo Accedi o Registrati
To continue reading the article LogIn or JoinUs

September is a brilliant month for all cacti, but pay attention to proper care ahead of autumn

Even in Northern Italy or, generally speaking, in Europe, September is usually a good time for cacti and succulent plants in general. Temperatures drop considerably, there is still plenty of light, and many plants start to vegetate again after the slowdown or stagnation of August when the highs are very high, and many succulents stop to save energy. However, September is also an important month ahead of the fall and winter season, when cacti and succulents stop growing altogether and allow themselves a long period of “rest” while waiting for the new growing season. It’s therefore decisive to accompany the plants on their journey and make the right treatments to arrive in the fall with healthy specimens and ready for the months of drought. Fundamental, for example, is the irrigation regime in this period.

In this article, we see what you need to do this month for keeping cacti and succulents in perfect health, even preparing them for winter diminishing the risk of rot and loss.

Per proseguire nella lettura dell'articolo Accedi o Registrati
To continue reading the article LogIn or JoinUs