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Cacti and Succulents: Spring flowers and blushing plants

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 13, 2012
2:27 PM

Post #9081262

This first set of photos shows Dudleya brittonii doing its spring thing. Last picture shows the inflorescence on a green plant.

These flowers are popular with hummingbirds.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 13, 2012
2:29 PM

Post #9081264

Blushing and flowering Dudleyas.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 13, 2012
2:31 PM

Post #9081267

Echeveria flowers.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 13, 2012
2:33 PM

Post #9081269

Aloe and Opuntia flowers in the garden.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 13, 2012
2:36 PM

Post #9081274

Gasterias in the garden and in pots. You can just barely see the inner parts in the last picture (right side, halfway up).

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 13, 2012
2:41 PM

Post #9081283

Blushing Echeveria, Aeonium, Euphorbia (note crested arm at 3 o'clock).

The graph shows seasonal changes in sunlight here at the start of spring.

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zone10

zone10
San Diego, CA
(Zone 10b)

April 13, 2012
2:46 PM

Post #9081288

Wow Baja, the colors on that dudleya are amazing! Such contrast.
Little_things
Port Elizabeth
South Africa
(Zone 10a)

April 14, 2012
12:54 AM

Post #9081782

Beautiful - love the dudleya as well. All of them looking great.
helenchild
Decatur, GA

April 14, 2012
5:36 AM

Post #9081867

Beautiful plants and flowers. You have a great environment to bring out the best in your plants. Not to mention careful culture by you!
Helen
Little_things
Port Elizabeth
South Africa
(Zone 10a)

April 14, 2012
10:28 AM

Post #9082155

As we are going into winter things are slowing down...but my Strelitzia gave me a bonus..for you Baja, because of your great succulent show..

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 14, 2012
2:53 PM

Post #9082479

Nice. That's one of the few non-succulents I installed in the public garden. We had some rain yesterday, could be the last of the season. In a couple of months the Dudleyas will slow way down. I'm thinking the big blue one will end up in the ground, so as to keep going strong. The main question is where. It was essentially rootless when I received it, now I believe it can fend for itself.

zone10

zone10
San Diego, CA
(Zone 10b)

April 14, 2012
6:03 PM

Post #9082667

Just love the "Bird of Paradise" plants! They are taken for granted here as easy landscape plants, but they are so uniquely beautiful. They look like they glow when backlit at sunset.

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 19, 2012
4:31 PM

Post #9089389

Do Strelitzias grow wild around where you live, LT? I just read they are from South Africa.

The blushing medusa just got an upgrade (one size up). Here she is without any accoutrement and then seated in her new home. There's a short bit (few mm) of naked caudex above the root ball. I filled the gap around it with top dressing, so the arms are all laying on a cushion of pumice. Not the easiest job but pretty bulletproof in the end.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 19, 2012
4:40 PM

Post #9089394

Pleased to see fruit develop from Euphorbia flowers I hand-pollinated back in February. There's a total of 8 like the one on the lower right. Dad paused for a while but will soon be back in flower, just in time for another round with the paintbrush.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 19, 2012
4:47 PM

Post #9089404

A few aloes with highlights from afternoon sun.

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Little_things
Port Elizabeth
South Africa
(Zone 10a)

April 19, 2012
8:33 PM

Post #9089660

Hi yes the S. reginae v. juncae does occur around here, but most are a little up the coast towards Kwazulu-Natal province (little more hot & humid). Love the aloes.

NancySLAZ

NancySLAZ
Sun Lakes, AZ
(Zone 9a)

April 22, 2012
10:51 AM

Post #9092868

I love the aloes too and also the medusa. My Aloe dorotheae has been inside for 3 days at the Central AZ Cactus & Succulent Show and it has turned all green already. Boo hoo, I miss the red. I need to get it back outside so it looks like this again.

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zone10

zone10
San Diego, CA
(Zone 10b)

April 23, 2012
1:45 PM

Post #9094738

Baja, love the symmetry of the aloe on the second photo. Looks familiar, but can't think of the name? Also, great job on the Euphorbia repot. Nice plant! I like how it looks like the "branches" are cascading downward.

Nancy, one of my fav aloes! Nice healthy one! Yep, get 'er back out in the sun ASAP!

NancySLAZ

NancySLAZ
Sun Lakes, AZ
(Zone 9a)

April 23, 2012
2:13 PM

Post #9094766

Thanks z10! I have the aloe back where it belongs now! I also love that symmetrical aloe. Do you know the name Baja?
DMersh
Perth
United Kingdom
(Zone 7b)

April 23, 2012
5:05 PM

Post #9095020

Great pictures, the medusa plant is a very unusual looking succulent.

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 23, 2012
7:36 PM

Post #9095244

Thanks, guys. The second aloe is A. suprafoliata. The medusa was definitely due for a repotting, glad it all went well. No Euphorbia juice in my eyes, no arms ripped off the plant.

It's amazing how light changes affect the color (and growth) of A. dorotheae. I had to dial down the sun on my plant to keep it from stalling out. It gets 2-3 hours right now.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 23, 2012
7:44 PM

Post #9095259

The big blue Dudleya ended up in the ground next to a Pachyveria. Second photo shows the plant with a final layer of coir around it. Eventually that will settle down and sink in, and the color will be bleached by the sun to a dull brown.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 23, 2012
7:46 PM

Post #9095262

This is the first time this Hesperaloe has made a flower.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 23, 2012
8:02 PM

Post #9095282

Here's some seed I collected from four winter flowering aloes (open pollination). Left to right: A. marlothii, lutescens, "Cynthia Giddy", arborescens. The lutescens fruit was invaded by some bug and most of the seeds inside were eaten, but the ones that were left were all quite large. The arborescens seeds are noticeably smaller (well, in real life anyway) and much more numerous. I collected a lifetime supply from the top third of the inflorescence (which works out timewise to when the lutescens next to it started flowering, but before the other two were really going). Otherwise the paternity is up for grabs.

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Little_things
Port Elizabeth
South Africa
(Zone 10a)

April 23, 2012
10:07 PM

Post #9095398

So I guess you will sowing seeds? Like the Dudleya.

My A. cryptopoda is flowering for the first time (about 16 years) and it is the yellow, so it is actually the old wikensii v lutea - very pleased. The flower head sat in 80km/h ocean winds for a few day and it seems to have coped very well - this is great news for me. Some of the other aloes with less compact flowers just blow away in this type of wind.

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 24, 2012
11:41 AM

Post #9096043

Wow, good news. That's a long time to wait.

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

April 26, 2012
1:29 PM

Post #9098837

Gasterias in bud (right one recently rescued from a low-light situation), nectar catching the light on a hazy day, Aloe aristata, A. jucunda, unknown.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 3, 2012
10:33 PM

Post #9109631

Gymno. saglionis flower and bud, Aloe "Twilight Zone" inflorescence and rosette.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 3, 2012
10:41 PM

Post #9109635

A few shots I took last week after it rained. Dry season just ahead.

Aeonium, Echeveria, Dudleya, Aeonium, Pachypodium.

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zone10

zone10
San Diego, CA
(Zone 10b)

May 3, 2012
11:25 PM

Post #9109653

Love the irony in photos of succulents covered in water droplets. Love that first aeonium Baja!
amanzed
Los Angeles, CA
(Zone 10a)

May 4, 2012
12:04 AM

Post #9109659

It looks like I need to get Aloe dorotheae. That plant looks amazing.

zone10

zone10
San Diego, CA
(Zone 10b)

May 4, 2012
8:09 AM

Post #9110025

Amanzed, I highly recommend A. dorotheae. Beautiful color; smooth, shiny, prominently toothed leaves; fast clumper; low grower; not sensitive to off season water. One of my fav's!

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 4, 2012
1:42 PM

Post #9110414

Yes.

Another reason I like the aloe is that it's quite robust for its size, with a "pumped up" look even when it's grown fairly dry. Unlike other aloes that burn through their lower leaves, it tends to hold on to what it's got.

There are a few different clones out there, Dean, so you know. It's probably a good idea to offer sun protection (ideally filtered light) to young plants, keep them on the green side for a while. Then once they reach a decent size you can play freely with the color.
amanzed
Los Angeles, CA
(Zone 10a)

May 4, 2012
2:11 PM

Post #9110437

Thanks for the info, zone10 and Baja_Costero,

I'd seen it around the hobby in this area. I think someone had one at a San Gabriel Valley CSS meeting. I sorta clocked it mentally then but now it's firmly on my mental list.

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 4, 2012
9:48 PM

Post #9111022

I put a few offsets in the ground when I potted up the one in the container. Since then they have been running in parallel and there are some differences. Even though I water the landscape plants considerably less often and they receive essentially day-long blazing BC sun, they still hold on to a little bit of green, especially in the winter and spring. Makes sense I guess that a containerized plant would color up more than the one in the ground.

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 13, 2012
5:51 PM

Post #9122519

The local Ferocactus in flower (just opening up) and bud (red sepals!). Both are rescue plants. First one has been in my care for about 6 months. Second one just graduated to the ground after 15 months.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 31, 2012
2:01 PM

Post #9146544

Dudleya in flower the second time this season, recently repotted.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 31, 2012
2:04 PM

Post #9146552

Haworthia, Gasterias, Aloe jucunda.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 31, 2012
2:18 PM

Post #9146562

Cotyledons, Hesperaloe, unknown vining volunteer.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 31, 2012
2:19 PM

Post #9146564

Nopalitos!

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 31, 2012
2:21 PM

Post #9146568

A few aloes in the ground.

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amanzed
Los Angeles, CA
(Zone 10a)

May 31, 2012
2:24 PM

Post #9146570

I think that vining volunteer is notorious "Bindweed", Convolvulus

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 31, 2012
2:26 PM

Post #9146571

Found and removed this mite attack yesterday on a coral aloe inflorescence gone to seed.

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Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

May 31, 2012
2:28 PM

Post #9146572

Bindweed it is. Seems to do quite well all over the garden. At least it makes nice flowers.
amanzed
Los Angeles, CA
(Zone 10a)

May 31, 2012
2:38 PM

Post #9146577

Yes! I couldn't understand as a kid why my dad's face would fill with something like rage at this delicate little plant with the white flowers. Very well adapted to semi-arid circumstances and extremely hard to eradicate once established. Maybe it's not the garden-eating tyrant in your conditions that it can be elsewhere. Fortunate!

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

June 8, 2012
4:12 PM

Post #9157450

All things considered, there are worse weeds in the garden. I seek and destroy two spiny ones on a regular basis. One is a tumbleweed-generating thing that grows very quickly from seed. The other is a vicious shrub that keeps coming back from the roots, but not necessarily in the same place.

More succulents...
1. Aloe aristata. Bunch of 'em going right now. As usual the flowers open before the inflorescence is fully formed (see branch in bud).
2. Oscularia deltoides with a few visitors.
3. Aloe brevifolia in profile.

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lmccameron
Rodeo, CA
(Zone 9b)

June 25, 2012
8:29 AM

Post #9179933

I have several different echeveria plants that are about to bloom and I would like to cross pollinate them so that I may produce and collect some seeds so that I may start my own plants. Any direction to get me started would be wonderful. my fear is that some of the hybrids that I have are sterile. I also have several that are not hybrids

And off we go.
Lynn McCameron
amanzed
Los Angeles, CA
(Zone 10a)

June 25, 2012
8:40 AM

Post #9179945

Do you mean how-to direction? I haven't gotten too involved with breeding, though I've attempted to cross-pollinate a few of my plants.

I always hear that small, cheap paintbrushes are the best tool for the job. In fact, some dedicated breeders keep little cups attached to their growing benches at 6-foot intervals so that a small paintbrush is always within arm's reach. I never seem to have small paintbrushes so I've frayed fine the end of clothesline and diddled the flowers with that. I intend to buy small paintbrushes soon.

Is that what you meant?
lmccameron
Rodeo, CA
(Zone 9b)

June 25, 2012
10:30 AM

Post #9180162

I guess in a way. More so in the direction of when to harvest the seed and when I do do they have to be 'treated' in anyway.

Baja_Costero

Baja_Costero
Baja California
Mexico
(Zone 11)

June 25, 2012
1:55 PM

Post #9180530

I've never pollinated Echeverias, but have been successful with other plants. A little scrappy paintbrush works great. Ideally a contrasting color of bristle to the pollen you're trying to collect. Timing is key, on both ends. Nature's pollinators may do their thing if the plants are together, nothing wrong with an open hybrid. I was reading a Mexican paper about this (the second Google result on Echeveria pollination) and hand pollination of E. gibbiflora, presumably by people who know what they're doing, only gave around 50% more fruit and seed than just letting the hummingbirds take care of business.

As for harvest time, I think you just have to watch for fruit and wait for it to mature in the days to weeks after you pollinate a plant. This requires some attention while you're observing the process and getting to know your plants. The seed is very fine, collect it carefully. Some Echeverias are notoriously hesitant to set seed, so it may take a few attempts. Better to cast a wide net your first time around.

Pilbeam includes some notes about propagation in his Echeveria book. Echeveria seeds may take weeks or months to germinate, so be patient on that front, but otherwise he says they don't require anything special beyond the usual setup for succulents (enclosed moist chamber until they make true leaves).

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