I finally got to see an open flower! It has made several but only one on the plant at a time. So far I had only seen the buds. I am trying an experiment by leaving this plant outside this winter to check its hardiness. There is too much shade where it is and I will have to move it early next spring.
After reading this I went out and checked mine and sure enough they are in bloom... too... amazing how in different states and possibly very different temperature, humidity and rainfall occurrences, the day length still tells these cacti to bloom this time of year.
Cool! We are all in sync!
Mine tried to flower 2 weeks ago, but the thrashers came in and trashed both blooms.
I placed a screen on it last week when I saw a new bud forming. They still did minor damage to one part of the flower, but it was definitely better than ever before!
palmbob, All my plants go outside for the summer. I'm in zone 4, my plants face east, and south, get rained on and watered when needed. It does get very humid here. My 35+ year old A. retusus actually grew quite well this past summer. Still no flowers. I treasure the plant very much and can live without flowers as long as it keeps living. Any idea how long these cacti can live? cll
They really are cool-looking plants.I have a friend who has one that he figures might be 30 years old. Since you bought it as a plant, you don't really know its age but I'm curious as to how long they take to bloom from seed. I hear they're comparatively slow growers. I have some 20+ year-old Ferocacti that have yet to bloom. But most Echinocerei, Mammillaria, and Coryphantha will bloom in about 3-5 years. I just started some Copiapoa seeds and they're also reputedly slow growers . But they're such beautiful plants that the blooms are secondary anyway. Planting cactus seeds really is an act of faith. And patience.
I just got Ariocarpus retusus v. furfuraceus last weekend, which I see Palmbob also has in his dish garden (the smooth leaf bluish ones). I wondered about that one blooming--whether it takes a long time also and if it needs the same conditions.
I had a Ariocarpus retusus for a few years and it was growing well. Then last summer some rodent ran off with it!!! Grrr... I was a little heartbroken as it was a fav. Sigh...
Good luck with yours Nancy. Keep it safe from marauders.
I guess the trick is to give them enough sun but not too much so they burn, especially here.
My little silky terrier Sophie is a demon with anything like a mouse or rat or rabbit. They don't get near my plants!