Rethymno, Crete, Greece(Zone 10b)

this plant is usually grown in pots. Multiple new heads soon occupy all space in the pot - the crammed picture makes me feel the plant is uncomfortable - so I put it down last spring - it took a lot of care to avoid stepping on it all winter, until last March this flower appeared, then it was full of red flowers, then they faded and it was full of white hair, and weeds started growing through its heads, and now it looks pretty comfortable, and I feel uncomofortable.. who can say what it is and what it takes to have it nice and tidy??

Dimitri

Thumbnail by dpmichael
Antrim, Northern Ire, United Kingdom(Zone 8b)

hi there

it's the 'peanut cactus' Chamaecereus silvestri

Mark

Rethymno, Crete, Greece(Zone 10b)

Thank you again, Mark.
Is there something special to know about this cactus??
I have noticed that although they are supposed to do well in drought, they do much better with watering. Do they need
compost? mulching? what ph soil??

Your commentws much appreciated

Dimitri

Macclesfield, CHESHIRE(Zone 8a)

Hi Dimitri,

These grow in my greenhouse like a weed. Left to their own devices they make new growths (a bit like cats tails) which drop off and seem to root where they fall. They dont seem to mind neglect. If you forget to water them they survive (I guess they are a desert plant originally anyway) and I only liquid feed them very rarely.

El Tel

Antrim, Northern Ire, United Kingdom(Zone 8b)

hi Dimitri

here is what I do with all my cacti.

when buds form in the spring I give them a slight misting with water 2 or 3 times a week. when active growth of the plant is seen I water them heavier once a week. I build this up to a point when they are watered along with all my other plants in the greenhouse. once a month they also get a feed using tomato fertiliser. all watering stops in early September so the compost around the plants can dry out completely before winter sets in. no water is given until buds form the following year.

the secret to have lots of flowers is to water normally in the spring and summer and let them get as cold as possible in the winter. wet compost in winter rots the roots and the cactus.

Eltel, peanut cacti that form long growths are usually in poor light conditions but there could be another cause.

Rethymno, Crete, Greece(Zone 10b)

Mark, thank you so much for your advice. Cacti are easy to grow in Greece, thanks to the dry summers and frost-free winters, but people grow them without knowledge, just put them in the pot and look at thm grow.
Now I will be more decisive and knowledgable.

Dimitri

Antrim, Northern Ire, United Kingdom(Zone 8b)

glad I could help you

Mark

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