Cast Iron Tractor

And now for the pièce de résistance, the culmination of all our hard work for Cast Iron Day.

Cleaning the Canopy

Mike is the newest member of the Cactus Jungle team. He’s a tree person, but here he is cleaning the canopy that we’re putting up for winter. I think it’s to keep the Pachypodiums warm.


Nice pots.

Column Cactus

Ever wonder what a column cactus would look like if you had a whole lot of them in one place at the same time? Here, take a look. That’s a lot of column cacti at the Cactus Jungle now.

Column Cactus

Who can name them all? And not you Keith, employees who could go look a the tags are not included.

If you’re not sure of them all then click the photo to embiggen. It will get really embiggened, so you can check the finer points of the aureoles and such.

Crassula “Buddha’s Temple”

People ask if we have Crassula “Buddha’s Temple” available and for a number of years we’ve had to say “no”. Until now. We finally have a real crop ready, to size and on the floor and ready for sale. Nice! Hopefully we will be able to keep these growing on for years to come so that anytime anyone anywhere (Berkeley, Oakland and the San Francisco Bay Area) wants one we will have it available. Now and forever.


Crassula “Buddha’s Temple”

Miniature square-shaped vertical stems to 8″, drops bottom leaves

Hardy to 25F
Part Sun to Part Shade
Low Water


What do you think, should we order tissue culture starts of this “new” dwarf agave?

It’s pretty, sure, but small, so do you want it? Can you resist it? Will you pay the big bucks for it?

Agave “Dragon Toes”

Of course it’s got a name that I will probably refuse to use. I might have to rename it Agave “Blue Fugue”. Now that’s the ticket.

Customer Gets Echinocereus to Bloom Big

We like it when you send us your photos.

Here we have a friendly couple, with a couple of friendly dogs, who came into the nursery with a large trough to fill, and they picked out some lovely cacti. Spiny cacti, even. Poor dog. Well, the blooms are going crazy all over.

I’ll feature my own photo of the mammillaria (the one on the left) tomorrow, from before they planted it.

Hi Peter, Hi Hap:

Attached please find pictures of our antique Chinese water trough filled with your beautiful cacti!
Check out the blooms on the tall one!!

You may remember us from the pottery art show, and due to our little dogs.
Also, my orchid is blooming again thanks to your help.


The Bingleys

Dalai Lama Packs 'Em In

The SF Chronicle warns you to avoid Berkeley today.

Visitors are advised to use public transit, carpool and ride bicycles downtown, which is expected to be near gridlock due to the Dalai Lama’s security detail and the multiple festivals.

I say just avoid the east side of town. The west side should still have easy in and out access from the freeway, so come on by the nursery or we’ll be lonely without you.

Get your organic veggie starts planted already.

Deer Broke in to Store

Got in this morning, and found a deer had broken in last night, and ate all the cactus out on the floor. We still have lots of succulents, but it will be awhile before we haved any more cacti ready for sale.

Desert Rose

Adenium somalense

We get to enjoy these rare caudiciforms blooming regularly, spring and fall, since they’re too expensive for anyone to actually purchase them at the store.

They’re mine! All mine!

I hope nobody got a picture of me taking this picture, because it wasn’t easy to get the bloom shot against the sky backdrop. I might have looked a bit “awkward”.

Difficult Customer Situation

We had a difficult customer situation yesterday which given that we’re retail surprisingly doesn’t happen very often. We are very much customer service driven and try to help everyone have success, so in this case I got confused with what the guy was asking for and tried to help him with his plant, while he really didn’t want any help.

He wanted to return an expensive plant he bought from us 5 months ago and had not taken care of and get a different one instead. He came in pretty much ready for a fight. Anyway, we don’t take plants back, and nobody takes anything back 5 months later, so I tried to help him through the issues.

His story was that he came to us asking for an Ocotillo with small leaves, and had a photo too, so we showed him 2 possible species, neither of which were leafed out at the time, but both have the same leaves, and he picked one. All our plants have the name on the pot. 5 months later he comes in, having not taken care of the plant and complains that the leaves are too big and he meant the other species.

So I try to help him – how to take better care, what to do to make it look like he wants. This is where I went wrong. He wasn’t looking for help – he was demanding we take back a damaged plant after 5 months. I should have just said no, it’s been 5 months, we don’t take returns after 5 months. I think that would have been a better response.

Anyway, then he starts in threatening us. He says he worked on the TV show that we had some plants on once and he’s on the board of a garden club in Sacramento and he’s going to bad mouth us to everyone out there. I really didn’t take offense at this, and just kept trying to help him out, offering a discount on any new plant, etc. But my co-workers all afterward told me they got angry at this point – He was threatening us! I suppose at that point I should have told him the conversation was now over and he needs to leave the nursery.

So it’s a learning experience. These really are very rare for us, so it’s hard to be prepared when they happen. And now I’ll be keeping an eye on Yelp and Google for his negative review.

And for your trouble to follow this to the end.. a pretty picture! Yay!

Jovibarba heuffelii

Dinosaur in the Garden

Today we see one of the flying carnivorous dinosaurs has landed on a Senecio anteuphorbium, so you know it has good taste, perching on this succulent while searching for small prey below.

Dinosaur in the Garden

It’s been a weird day today. That’s what we get for living in the city of Berkeley.

Here, have a dinosaur in the garden.

dinosaur in the garden

Dinosaur in the Succulent Garden

I seem to have a thing for toys at the store. We seem to have more toys at the store every day. Dinosaurs seem to be a good fit for the store since you can put them in your pots around the garden and they’re cute! Even though the dinosaurs we have at the store are all carnivorous dinosaurs. I wonder if the carnivorous plants would do well with a carnivorous dinosaur in the pot?


Dinosaur Lithops


That’s a Dimetrodon about to nibble on a Lithops.

Bad dinosaur!

Double Bowl

Using our newest double-bowl glass for a succulent terrarium?



Dragon Bell


I love our cast iron dragon bell! But we’ve only sold one of them all year! I wonder why?

Dragon in the Garden

We got in a new set of Dragons for the store – mostly for terrariumsbut also for the garden. I don’t like these as much as some of the other toys we’ve had, but whatever – here you go – some dragons in the garden.

with Plectranthus

Dragon in the Garden


Why is it that Dragons like to hang out among the succulents so much? It’s a mystery.


We’ve had a lot of insects buzzing around recently, pollinating so one presumes. Some really pretty dragonflies too. Here’s my best shot of one sitting on a Cotyledon orbiculata seed pod, taken with my camera phone, without scaring it away.

End of August

It’s the last day of August, and that means it’s the last day for our 20% off Pre-Order Succulent Wreath Special. Operators are standing by.

And the last day of our Bird House and Bird Feeder and Bird Food 30% off Clearance Sale.

Here, have a pretty picture of a cactus.

Gymnocalycium baldianum with a ripe fruit.

September 2021

US Constitution


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