Austin Art Car Update

The cactus art car must go, the <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1764&amp;entry_id=1571" title="http://www.news8austin.com/content/your_news/default.asp?ArID=197977" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.news8austin.com/content/your_news/default.asp?ArID=197977′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">judge in Austin</a> orders.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">On Thursday, a San Marcos judge ordered a local novelty store to remove an old Oldsmobile now used as a cactus planter or face fines. The judge ruled the planter is a public nuisance.</span><br /></div><br />That’s ridiculous.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Planet K owner Michael Kleinman said he was stunned.</span><br /></div><br />

Cactus Money

The &quot;2008 American Numismatic Association National Money Show&quot; will be <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1763&amp;entry_id=1567" title="http://www.numismaster.com/ta/numis/Article.jsp?ad=article&ArticleId=3608" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.numismaster.com/ta/numis/Article.jsp?ad=article&ArticleId=3608′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">in Phoenix this year</a> (in March if you want to know) and they’ve struck a coin with cactus clearly stamped into the design.<br /><br />picture after the break…<br /><br /><br /><a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/archives/1567-guid.html#extended">Continue reading "Cactus Money"</a>

Michigan Mesembs

They like them some <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1758&amp;entry_id=1562" title="http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080108/FEATURES04/801080362" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080108/FEATURES04/801080362′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">mesembs in Detroit</a> these days, and who could argue?<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">One place to see lithops (LITH-ops) growing is at the newly renovated Matthaei Botanical Gardens conservatory in Ann Arbor.<br />
<br />
Lithops come in various sizes, markings and colors, like mottled pink, brown and gray. Flat-topped and stout, they look like cute fireplugs or, possibly, distant relatives of SpongeBob SquarePants.<br />
<br />
Lithops are so unusual that many Matthaei visitors have never seen them before, said Paul Girard, natural areas collection specialist.</span><br /></div><br />They’re like little brains, those split rocks, also known as living stones. And the mice think they’re delicious too. Personally, I like the green ones, but the red ones are good too. And then there are the grey ones, and the yellow ones and all the rest. I guess a trip to Ann Arbor should be added to the schedule. It’s been about 10 years since I’ve been back there. (15 is more likely). Ah, those carefree days.<br /><br />

Bird Watching Among the Cactus

It’s very cold in <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1757&amp;entry_id=1561" title="http://www.mywesttexas.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=19161094&BRD=2288&PAG=461&dept_id=475590&rfi=6" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.mywesttexas.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=19161094&BRD=2288&PAG=461&dept_id=475590&rfi=6′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">West Texas in winter</a>, and yet still, the birders are out doing their bird watching thing.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Next up are the cactus wrens in family groups. Every cactus wren has several football-shaped nests of wads of grass in the thicker shrubbery of lote and catclaw, not mesquite. They spend the night alone inside their own nest but tag along together during the morning’s inspection tour. Mockingbirds also greet the sun. They prefer to spend the night near their favorite tasajillo clump under a mesquite, the one with the ripest red berries….<br />
<br />
Every winter my parents traveled West Texas, doing up to twelve Audubon Christmas Bird Counts. They would often awaken at 3 or 4 a.m. to drive a hundred miles or more, then count birds from &quot;can to can’t&quot; and then join other birders to tally up. I always rode with them as a kid.</span><br /></div><br />A pleasant day spent among the birds. Now personally, I’d rather be inside sipping hot cocoa.<br /><br />

Pittsburgh Succulents

They do a lot of indoor gardening in Pittsburgh during the winter, what with the winter weather and all. I sometimes wonder how all those nurseries survive the winter. I suppose they’re closed. I know I would close for January if I could. Anyway, back to Pittsburgh, and the article about succulents being good for indoor gardening, in the <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1752&amp;entry_id=1556" title="http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/leadertimes/s_544892.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/leadertimes/s_544892.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Leader Times</a>.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Succulent plants… make great houseplants and many are easy to grow. What better time when the garden is at rest then to try growing succulents indoors….<br />
<br />
A plant favored by many is the jade plant….<br />
<br />
Another good choice… is the crassula perforata…<br />
<br />
One more succulent… is the kalanchoe often seen blooming in the stores near Valentine’s Day.</span><br /></div><br />I checked, and it’s 20 below there in Pittsburgh right now. I hope the windows aren’t open. There’s more plants in Pittsburgh after the break, if care to join me…<br /><br /><br /><a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/archives/1556-guid.html#extended">Continue reading "Pittsburgh Succulents"</a>

Ohio Cactus

They’ve recently discovered that succulents are pretty in Ohio. Who knew? This brilliant discovery comes <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1748&amp;entry_id=1551" title="http://www.ohio.com/lifestyle/home_garden/12909051.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.ohio.com/lifestyle/home_garden/12909051.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">courtesy of Ohio.com</a>.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Tired of blossoms in your flower garden that dazzle and sizzle but are quick to fade? Maybe it’s time for some dependable succulents — the enduring plants that last through the good times but also, especially, the bad.</span><br /></div><br />I hear that it’s cold there right now. I’m cold just thinking about it. Brrrrr. Of course, I used to live in Michigan. And then there was that time I lived in Alaska too. So I should talk. But now I’m California all the way, baby. And it’s freezing here in Berkeley. Brrrrr…….<br /><br />

Sacramento Cactus

Winter in Sacramento is a little bit colder than here in the Berkeley. What do they do about it? Why, let’s let the <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1747&amp;entry_id=1550" title="http://www.sacbee.com/107/story/592474.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.sacbee.com/107/story/592474.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Sacramento Bee</a> give us advice.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">The Sacramento County master gardeners recommend moving cacti, succulents and other frost-tender plants to a sheltered location to keep them from freezing. Against the house, under the overhang, on a patio, or against a fence or wall can provide just enough shelter and warmth to keep the plants from being killed during a freeze.</span><br /></div><br />What about Modesto? Is that advice also good for Modesto? We’ll never know for sure.<br /><br />

Cactus Cops

They need them in Phoenix. <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1740&amp;entry_id=1544" title="http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/opinions/articles/1221fri2-21.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/opinions/articles/1221fri2-21.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">The newspaper</a> tells you what they do.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;">Two people with a truck can uproot a saguaro in 20 minutes and sell it for $55 to $75 a foot to a homeowner who thinks planting a cactus shows a love of the desert. These criminals enrich themselves at the expense of our natural environment.<br />
<br />
<i>There ought to be a law.</i><br />
<br />
There is. Poaching a protected native plant is a misdemeanor that can carry a fine of up to $1,500. But so many people disregarded native-plant protections that back in the 1980s, the state Department of Agriculture hired seven law-enforcement officers and trained them to track down cactus thieves and monitor sales in nurseries and other places.<br />
<br />
<i>Those are the cactus cops?</i><br />
<br />
Right. And they caught 90 to 100 cactus thieves per year for a while.<br />
<br />
<i>That’s great!</i><br />
<br />
Sure, but it is yesterday’s news. Today, there are only two cactus cops in the state, and they managed to nail only about 20 cactus thieves in 2006.<br /></div><br />Now you know. Are you interested?<br /><br />

News Update

It’s going to be a slow news day. From the <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1741&amp;entry_id=1541" title="http://www.star-telegram.com/448/story/377609.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.star-telegram.com/448/story/377609.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Dallas Star-Telegram</a>:<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Man uses tractor to crush cactus</span><br />
By FRED AFFLERBACH<br />
<br />
TEMPLE, Texas — The prickly pear cactus has been a thorn in the cattleman’s side since the Mexican vaqueros began pushing their stock across the Rio Grande well over two centuries ago.<br />
<br />
This invasive species chokes out native grasses with its aggressive root system that spreads horizontally, sending up new shoots. It sucks up rainwater before the moisture can soak in, or run off and fill reservoirs needed for watering stock….<br />
<br />
Ranchers have sprayed it with chemicals, scraped it with bulldozers, and in times of drought used it for cattle feed by burning the spines with propane torches.<br />
<br />
Fast forward to the 21st century and meet the Kactus Krusher, aka Dave Gross, riding a red 1954 Farmall tractor pulling an odd-looking train of cutting and crushing implements pulverizing the cacti into green mush….<br />
<br />
&quot;It’s not like traditional methods where you lose a lot of top soil,&quot; Ringler said. &quot;He cuts them out at the roots and smushes them so they dry out.&quot;</span></div><br /><br />

Cactus Novelty

Is it art? Novelty? Nuisance? In <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1999&amp;entry_id=1538" title="http://www.sanmarcosrecord.com/local/local_story_361120856.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.sanmarcosrecord.com/local/local_story_361120856.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">San Marcos, TX</a> they’ll be deciding soon.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">A decision on whether a car-turned-cactus planter outside a San Marcos novelty shop is art or a public nuisance will not be made until next year.<br />
<br />
The case… was reset for 2 p.m. on Jan. 10. The car was deemed a “public nuisance” in November by San Marcos Code Enforcement Officers…<br />
<br />
However, local resident Joe Ptak, also a store manager, says the car, in this case an Oldsmobile, is a franchise trademark and a work of art. It was ceremoniously smashed by store patrons during grand opening festivities. Local artists have since covered it with original works and a variety of cactus plants have been put into its gutted interior.</span><br /></div><br />The <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=2000&amp;entry_id=1538" title="http://www.statesman.com/news/content/news/stories/local/12/20/rbz-Planet-K-Car-2.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.statesman.com/news/content/news/stories/local/12/20/rbz-Planet-K-Car-2.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Austin Statesman</a> has a picture.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;"><img width="400" hspace="5" height="258" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/misc/image_6349624a.jpg" /><br /> Ralph Barrera AMERICAN-STATESMAN<br />
To celebrate its opening in San Marcos, Planet K demolished an Oldsmobile, planted cacti and had it decorated by local artists. Sales associate Erin Wall looks it over.<br /><br /></span></div>I say it’s a novelty nuisance art.<br /><br />

Indian Garden

The <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1733&amp;entry_id=1535" title="http://www.livemint.com/2007/12/20001400/Labour-of-love.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.livemint.com/2007/12/20001400/Labour-of-love.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Wall Street Journal’s India edition</a> (I think that’s what it is) has a garden column.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">(I) set off on the coldest day of the season, to Faridabad… looking for a garden that someone had told me about. All the way there… I wondered why I was taking the trouble….<br />
<br />
The garden has one of the best cactus and succulent collections in the NCR, if not in the country. Most were picked up on Jhanb’s visits to Bangkok. He even has the insect-eater plant….<br />
<br />
Little wonder that visitors pour in even on foggy December mornings and settle down to sing bhajans.</span><br /></div><br />I wonder if bread will mold faster if I keep the house at a constant 68 degrees? Maybe I should try refrigeration.<br /><br />

Winter Gardening

What to do with the kids on winter break? <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1727&amp;entry_id=1530" title="http://www.explorernews.com/article/show/21055" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.explorernews.com/article/show/21055′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">In Tucson</a> they garden.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">With the school break upon us, and the kids getting bored… It’s time to get outside and do something real. Simply puttering around, putting things to right in the landscape can be very relaxing. Have the kids help. Put them to work….<br />
<br />
If you simply must feel productive, right now is a fine time to add mulch against frost… Just don’t mulch the inch or so right next to the trunk, which could encourage rot. Mulch will help save water in summer, too. <span style="font-weight: bold;">Just don’t mulch succulents like cacti and agave.</span></span><br /></div><br />My parents never gardened with us when we were little. They kept it all to themselves. Well, no, they did no gardening themselves either.<br /><br />

Celebrity News

I’ve never had a bit of celebrity news to share before. But now it appears that Hillary Swank’s succulent habits are important enough to the people of Columbus, Ohio to print an entire article in the <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1722&amp;entry_id=1523" title="http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/flipside/stories/2007/12/17/3_PEO17_ART_12-17-07_D8_HL8P906.html?type=rss&cat=&sid=101" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/flipside/stories/2007/12/17/3_PEO17_ART_12-17-07_D8_HL8P906.html?type=rss&cat=&sid=101′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Dispatch</a>, and so I have excerpted this gem for you too:<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Hilary Swank takes 45 vitamin supplements every day…. &quot;This is my <span style="font-weight: bold;">Aloe</span> C, which I dissolve in water,&quot; she told an interviewer for the January issue. &quot;Here’s my flax. This one’s for my immune system, and this one is my BrainWave. It’s great….</span><br /></div><br />I do feel better knowing Ms. Swank is taking all her vitamins.<br /><br />

New Cactus House

The new <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1721&amp;entry_id=1522" title="http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/1219phxdbg1218.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/1219phxdbg1218.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Cactus House</a> at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix is set to open in the spring, and it’s going to be a showcase for an incredible collection.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">For years, the aluminum lath house that sheltered the Desert Botanical Garden’s treasured cactus collection sorely needed a dynamic makeover….<br />
<br />
Susan Ahearn, a garden volunteer since 1970, said getting rid of the old structures was a dream come true….<br />
<br />
Scott McMahon, curator of cactuses, said the galleries will open to the public April 2. He said the public will be impressed not only by the design of the plantings, but also by the new specimens from Old World and New World locales.</span><br /></div><br />Now that’s progress.<br /><br />

Literature

The <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1715&amp;entry_id=1519" title="http://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/12/17/menus-as-literature/" onmouseover="window.status=’http://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/12/17/menus-as-literature/’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">New York Times</a> reviews literary menus at restaurants in Philadelphia (I don’t know why, just go with it) and comes up with this literary ode to the cactus:<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">“The cactus leaf is a bed with the tropical tamarindo sauce inviting the chile chipotle to participate as a witness in the lynching of the fabulous filet mignon, along with the chiles serranos….”<br />
<br />
“In the city of Puebla,” the narrative continues, “several convents were active in creating much of the traditional Mexican cooking, as we know it today. One such convent was expecting a visit by a distinguished archbishop. A nun decided to serve a sauce known by the Nahuatl Indians as ‘mulli.’ However ‘mulli’ is a potpourri of hot chiles.”</span><br /></div><br />Indeed, menus can be quite the masterpiece of literary fiction.<br /><br />

Peyote

People want to know about Peyote. So here you go, a blog entry with the word in the title, so you can find this information easily when you google the word Peyote. It’s an illegal drug in the U.S. We don’t sell it. We don’t have it. I’ve never tried it and wouldn’t know how to, so don’t ask. However, I do know that it is becoming more rare in the wild, threatened, endangered even. And it has very pretty flowers. From the <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1710&amp;entry_id=1514" title="http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/mexico/20071209-9999-1n9peyote.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/mexico/20071209-9999-1n9peyote.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">San Diego Union-Tribune</a>:<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;"><img width="280" hspace="5" height="185" border="2" align="left" src="/blog/uploads/misc/news-peyote.jpg" />This ground-hugging native of Mexico’s northern desert is in danger of disappearing, a victim of psychedelic tourism, silver mining and greenhouse tomatoes….<br />
<br />
(T)he Huichol Indians… have used peyote for hundreds, possibly even thousands of years, in ceremonies to communicate with their gods….<br />
<br />
As they walk through the desert toward their holy mountain, towering above the mining town of Real de Catorce, they run into foreign tourists with stupefied smiles, sucking hallucinogenic juice from the revered plant….<br />
<br />
</span><br /></div><br />Now you know everything you need to know so don’t go stealing it from the wild and don’t ask me nothing because this is all I know.<br /><br /><br /><a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/archives/1514-guid.html#extended">Continue reading "Peyote"</a>

Virginia Succulents

They grow them indoors in the winter in Virginia, so the <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1709&amp;entry_id=1513" title="http://www.dailypress.com/news/local/virginia/dp-fea–gardening-greenh1210dec10,0,4856769.story" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.dailypress.com/news/local/virginia/dp-fea–gardening-greenh1210dec10,0,4856769.story’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Daily Press</a> tells us.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Late February is a good time to get your seeds started if you want some maturity for a springtime display in your greenhouse, or want plants ready to go into the ground after the last killing frost. Many succulents are dormant, making it an easy time to clean them up, repot and check for insects. Those that are still growing should be watered, but sparsely.</span><br /></div><br />That’s a lot of advance planning for a home based hobby greenhouse.<br /><br />

Rain

The <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1708&amp;entry_id=1512" title="http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/opinions/articles/1212quickhit-ingley12.html" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/opinions/articles/1212quickhit-ingley12.html’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Arizona desert perks up</a> after it rains.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">As a metaphor for hope and renewal, there’s nothing quite like rain in the desert. Just two weeks ago, after a string of brutally dry months, the cactus pads were shriveled. The virtually indestructible creosote had brown brittle leaves. Smaller plants such as bursage were reduced to bundles of sticks. Then came the rain. The desiccated moss on rocks burst into brief life. Within days, tiny leaves appeared on plants that looked dead. And the cactus plumped out.<br />
<br />
– Kathleen Ingley, editorial writer</span><br /></div><br />And we find that the entire nursery is so pretty when a sunny day follows some heavy rains. On the other hand, rain after rain just makes me soggy. Oh, and the plants too.<br /><br /><br />

North Carolina Cactus

They like them their cactus in winter in North Carolina. So says BlueRidgeNow.com.

Perhaps not enjoying the magnitude of poinsettia’s notoriety as a holiday symbol, a Christmas cactus in full bloom is no less stunning. A virtual heirloom, the long-lived plant is often passed down through the generations. Difficult to kill, even for this experienced flower hunter, our plant’s Achilles heel appears to be improper watering techniques. This year half the plant succumbed to too much water due to inadequate drainage from the base of its pot. Fortunately, this situation was timely corrected and the remaining half is right on schedule for a Christmas crescendo….

North Carolina’s wild native cactus, Opuntia humifusa, does have typical cactus features, and lives up to its common name, prickly pear. Producing an attractive spring-blooming flower, prickly pear can only be dealt with using extreme caution and adequate protection since the spines can cause injury and pain. Pets and children must be protected from contact with prickly pear plants.

Oh, they’re just talking about the christmas cactus like everyone else this time of year. Everyone must be pretty sick of poinsettias.

 

Asparagus

What do Cactus and Asparagus have in common? Why, US Farms, of course. <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1704&amp;entry_id=1507" title="http://www.resourceinvestor.com/pebble.asp?relid=38588" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.resourceinvestor.com/pebble.asp?relid=38588′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">The Resource Investor</a> recommends investing in a company called US Farms because they are diversified beyond food crops into cactus and aloe too.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">In the first quarter of each year, US Farms is one of the largest U.S. growers of asparagus….<br />
<br />
At first glance, US Farms looks like a fairly normal farming operation. It is a diversified farming and nursery company. The nursery unit, which provides a full range of ornamental products like Aloe Vera, Cactus, Jade, Palm Trees and Cycads, is a relatively small unit of the company, providing only about 4% of sales. The biggest revenue generator currently results from is the growing and brokering of the food crops, asparagus, tomatoes, and garlic, and the growing and harvesting of Aloe Vera for use as an ingredient of patent medicines and cosmetics.</span><br /></div><br />I can’t say I know anything about this &quot;investing&quot; thing they’re talking about. All I know is that if you bought any securities, especially of the SIC variety, over the last 5 years then there’s a good chance you own a piece of the mortgage mess and have less liquidity and more risk than you ever imagined. Good luck with that.<br /><br />There is this other tidbit in the article too:<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">One of the ideas under investigation is the potential of some of the cacti and succulents, including types of Aloe Vera, as a remediation crop for old mining properties. Aloe Vera will grow on some pretty sparse soil, with limited moisture required, so the plants might work in areas that don’t freeze and have soil with little contained humus.<br /><br /></span></div>

Australian Cactus

Parkes, New South Wales has a blooming plant, and it’s a cactus! This is big news in Parkes, I’m sure.


And it will greatly surprise you to learn what they are – cactus flowers!

The cactus plants were put in by well known local native gardener, Herb Unger, now in his 90s.

I’m getting tired of these local newspapers expressing surprise that a cactus is flowering. It’s kinda stupid. Maybe I should stop posting these entries. On the other hand, I could just make fun of them more. OK, so I’ve resolved: more stupid local newspaper articles! More of everything here on cactus blog! w00t!

Santa Cruz Style

There’s something brewing in the air in <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1698&amp;entry_id=1501" title="http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/story.php?storySection=Style&sid=51310" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/story.php?storySection=Style&sid=51310′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Santa Cruz</a>, if you know what I mean, wink-wink-nudge-nudge.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Thousands of cacti — many more than 12 feet in height — line Linda Martin’s home….</span><br /></div><br />Yes, it’s cactus in the air in Santa Cruz.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Martin’s mini-botanical garden, which may sound to many like it belongs in the countryside, resides at Loma Vista Estates, a Capitola mobile home park for seniors that was only recently filled with more cement than greenery.</span><br /></div><br />Some like it prickly, I guess.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><br /><img width="400" border="2" src="/blog/uploads/misc/1196922121CSS329.jpg" /></div><br /><br />

Louisville Succulents

The <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1697&amp;entry_id=1500" title="http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071205/FEATURES08/71205036/1010/FEATURES" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071205/FEATURES08/71205036/1010/FEATURES’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Courier Journal</a> reprints an old column, seemingly every year now, that gives houseplant advice. Like this:<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Succulents. Most are pretty easy to keep going. There are lots of succulent desert-type holiday mixed gardens out there.<br />
<br />
The main succulents this year are the new Calandiva series of Kalanchoe with more spectacular, roselike flowers that hold for almost two months.</span><br /></div><br />The column was originally printed in 2005, so do you think the &quot;new&quot; calandivas are still the hot new plant? Come by the nursery some day and find out for yourself. (Hint: the older style, less-rose-like Kalanchoe blossfeldiana are all the rage this year.) Anyway, shouldn’t an editor have checked the column for dated info before they reprinted it as current? I’m just saying.<br /><br />

Staten Island Cactus

They have cactus on <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1695&amp;entry_id=1499" title="http://www.silive.com/living/advance/index.ssf?/base/living/1196948751256740.xml&coll=1" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.silive.com/living/advance/index.ssf?/base/living/1196948751256740.xml&coll=1′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Staten Island</a>? You mean the one in New York City? Who knew such a thing was possible, certainly not me.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Each year Cacti and Succulents have become more popular as houseplants. The variety of unusual forms, their slow growth, their relative freedom from insects and disease and the little effort required to grow them, all have contributed to their popularity….<br />
<br />
Is there an empty corner in your living room that needs &quot;something?&quot; Do you have a window that needs a hanging plant, or a sitting room that could use an eye-catching accent? Cacti and Succulents might just be what you’re looking for….<br />
<br />
Angela Doglio is a member of the Great Kills Garden Club and past director of First District Federated Garden Clubs of New York State.</span><br /></div><br />The Staten Island <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1696&amp;entry_id=1499" title="http://www.siferry.com/" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.siferry.com/’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Ferry</a> is only a quarter, the best deal in town.<br /><br />

Cactus in London, take 2

I previously blogged about how you could now find cactus pads in fancy London groceries, but I was wrong. They’re in fancy London-based groceries in Arizona. Who knew. And yet, <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1693&amp;entry_id=1496" title="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/health/healthmain.html?in_article_id=501177&in_page_id=1774&ito=1490" onmouseover="window.status=’http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/health/healthmain.html?in_article_id=501177&in_page_id=1774&ito=1490′;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">the Daily Mail is telling Londoners</a> that cactus pads can cure hangovers. I don’t know how that will work if you can’t actually get the pads in London. Oh well. It’s a good story.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Discovery Sliced Cactus, £1.29 per jar<br />
<br />
Waitrose and Morrisons<br />
<br />
How it works: Extracts of prickly pear cactus have been shown by one U.S. study to alleviate the symptoms of hangovers, though it’s not clear why.<br />
<br />
Tester’s verdict: Eimear O’Hagan, 26, from Belfast, says: &quot;Waking with a dry mouth and a sore head, I ate a few pickled cactus slices and went back to sleep.<br />
<br />
&quot;They were OK if you like pickled food, but had no impact on the hangover. I had acid reflux later on.&quot; 0/10<br />
<br />
Expert’s verdict: &quot;Extract of cactus is rich in antioxidants that can neutralise damage caused by free radical cells. Better taken before drinking not afterwards, so the body’s defences are primed.&quot; 8/10<br />
<br />
Overall rating: 4/10 </span><br /></div><br /><br />

Aloe Gum

It’s winter in the U.S. which means it’s aloe gum season in Kenya.

The value of aloe gum is expected to double beginning next month with the planned roll out of a new policy allowing its export.

Export of the medicinal products was banned in the 1980s, confining growers to the low-paying domestic market.

Kavaka Watai, the coordinator of the aloe project at the Kenya Forest Research Institute, said the ban has seen most dealers revert to smuggling of the product, forcing the price to fall to as low as $2 per kilogramme.

I don’t know what this means. Do you? I thought not. But I am nothing if not a complete succulent blogger, including all kinds of things that you never knew you needed to know about. Like this aloe gum issue. Now you know.

Buying Cactus in London

You can now buy cactus pads at the finest grocery stores in London, so says the<a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1690&amp;entry_id=1491" title="http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/retailing/article2987996.ece" onmouseover="window.status=’http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/retailing/article2987996.ece’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;"> Times of London</a>.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">You won’t find spotted dick pudding and you can search in vain for a tub of Marmite, but Tesco’s stores in the United States do a nice line in patas de puerco – pigs trotters….<br />
<br />
Take a quick walk down the aisle and…. among the fruit and vegetables sit prepacked cactus leaves.<br />
<br />
It’s not exactly your local high street Tesco, but Britain’s top supermarket chain is looking at the bigger picture.</span><br /></div><br />OK, so it’s not in London after all. It’s a British grocery chain come to the US, and they have all those American delicacies we so love that the Brits won’t touch, like pigs trotters.<br /><br />

Orange County Cactus Show

<a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1688&amp;entry_id=1489" title="http://media.www.fchornet.com/media/storage/paper921/news/2007/12/05/Local/Arboretum.Spikes.Interest.In.Cacti.At.Third.Annual.Show.Sale-3135058.shtml" onmouseover="window.status=’http://media.www.fchornet.com/media/storage/paper921/news/2007/12/05/Local/Arboretum.Spikes.Interest.In.Cacti.At.Third.Annual.Show.Sale-3135058.shtml’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Fullerton Arboretum</a> hosted a cactus show, and they got a surprisingly good turnout.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">&quot;There have been about 3,000 people in total to visit this weekend,&quot; said Cliff Meng.</span><br /></div><br />They like them some cactus in the OC. Plus it was free.<br /><br />

Christmas Tree Ornament

It seems that the White House christmas tree has a saguaro ornament. This is big news in Tucson, as <a href="https://cactusjungle.com/archives/blog/exit.php?url_id=1687&amp;entry_id=1488" title="http://kvoa.com/Global/story.asp?S=7457804&nav=HMO6HMaW" onmouseover="window.status=’http://kvoa.com/Global/story.asp?S=7457804&nav=HMO6HMaW’;return true;" onmouseout="window.status=”;return true;">Channel 4 KVOA</a> is on the story.<br /><br /><div style="margin-left: 40px;"><span style="font-style: italic;">Today we got a look at the ornament submitted by Tucson’s Saguaro National Park. It’s an artist’s version of a saguaro cactus.<br />
<br />
Park Superintendent Sarah Craighead says, &quot;It has the spines that run down the ornament when you look at it.&quot;</span><br /></div><br />You know, this is such a yawner, that I can’t imagine what the TV report must have done to their ratings as thousands of Tusconians turned off their sets. Just imagine what its doing to you, my faithful blog readers, as you turn off your computers to avoid this dull report, and head out into the sunshine. So I guess it’s all good.<br /><br />

Categories

April 2021
M T W T F S S
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930  

US Constitution

Videos



We Get Questions

Email your questions to:

blog [at] cactusjungle [dot] com