Sharon here! If those who know me think I fell off the planet, I haven't . I spent a good deal of time recovering from hip surgery, specifically, hip replacement. What an experience! But on to happier subjects! I'd like to share some photo's. I don't know the names of most of them, but it would make me happy to know that you liked at least some of them. My appologies for one or two being a tad fuzzy. It is taking me a little bit of time to figure out a new camera I have AND some changes in how to post.
Dean, in addition to my M. azureus out in full sun here in the Valley (and exposed to sub-freezing temps), I know of a local nursery that has 2-3 other types out in full sun. I can't say whether they leave them exposed in the winter, but I'm certain some Melocactus are far tougher plants than generally believed.
Yes, I know some are quite tender and demanding. But that seems to be the general reputation of the genus across the board. I have frequently encountered stunned responses from experienced and knowledgeable cactus hobbyists, upon learning of the harsh conditions under which my Melocactus (and others I know of) is apparently thriving. Of course, mine might drop dead tomorrow, you never know, but so far so good...
Germanstar, I think we agree. I think under some conditions Melocactus are easy. Around here, I think they can be trickier in pots because the roots overheat or dry out and die back. All the club folks around here talk about giving Melocactus more water in winter than other cacti (or less protection, since we get winter rain in coastal/Mediterranean climate CA). We run into more problems when we assume all cacti are the same. Clubs are great for sharing local lore for growing particular genera under local conditions. Or choosing species which thrive in one area with relatively little care or worry.
The cactus with the yellow flowers in your second posting looks a lot like what I bought as Hamatocactus hamatacanthus. Here in Mesa in the semi-shade it is a very prolific flowerer although it flowers during the day and the blooms do not last very long so I only get to see them on the weekends when I am not at work.
It has the hooked central spine and is very dark green. Two pictures added one to show the flower, and the other an overview of the cactus with several more flower buds and showing the hooked central spine.
Yes, they are stunning. Earlier in the summer I find that there are more buds blooming at once. As it gets later they seem to slow down some. I think my picture was taken May or June. Maybe if I fed them more they would develop more multiple buds. I'm not sure.
I have the Hamatocactus, too. It is out flowering everything that I have. Sharon, Nancy, I don't think your white one is Echinopsis subdenudata. It has much smaller spines. It is definately an Echinopsis though.
As Smashedcactus says they bloom a lot! I got mine at one of the H. depots in Mesa, some time this spring, I think it was one of the $3.99, maybe even $2.99, cacti they sell. Since then it has continuously flowered even through the hottest weather this summer. I have it in a hanging basket with morning sun exposure and full shade starting around noon. I have been watering the basket about once a week throughout the summer, with a short period of twice a week during the really hot weeks we had in July. Aside from flowering the cactus has grown quite a lot too. So for the money a great addition and great performer.
Thijs: Thank you so much for the info on location and watering. That really helps me know what to do. Also, I'm very interested to hear that the Hamatocactus blooms all through the summer and does well. I have some cacti (especially Echinopsis) that the heat affects the bloom even when they first open. That is very frustrating to me.
I know exactly what you mean with the Echinopsis flowers, given that we have had more moisture this year then the last few, I have had a couple set blooms for the third time this summer now and while they make it all the way to flowers... the flowers are essentially crumpled and look like they have been open for a day right when they open - not pretty.
These are also in the morning sun afternoon shade part of my yard, but it must just be too hot for them. I also noticed a very interesting bleaching, the Echinopsis in question is supposed to have pretty bright orangy-red flowers (they were/are in the spring), but right now they are very bleached almost pastel peach like color now.
Not sure exactly what to think about that.
I want to tell you I love every picture posted here. I am a total nut for Succulents and have close to 100. I got many of them this summer so haven't seen many bloom as yet. 'Black Prince' is about to show me red blooms and I'm anxiously waiting.
PS..Will gladly share as baby's arrive.
dahtzu: That's great about your growing collection.
On "intruding" on threads, I don't know the exact circumstances of the case you mention.
I hope you won't mind if I offer this: often if a member encourages someone to post a new thread, it's because the topic of their post is different enough that it warrants discussion in its own right. It's not a matter of intrusion so much as... topicality. Or relevance to the original post (or ongoing discussion) in that particular thread. Each thread is just a sequence of (often) related posts; they are not clubs unto themselves.
Speaking personally, you are most certainly welcome! And suggestions about how to contribute to threads or topics are—at their best—helpful advice on using the website. Take such advice with a grain of salt (even mine).
Thank you amanzed. Sometimes it's hard to know exactly which threads to comment on because although I love Succulents and Cacti, I really know nothing about them. I have been given quite a few that had noid, and those that I've purchased from WalMart and Lowe's I've kept their names but without looking at the label I don't know them.