Cactus Sign

Aunt Rachel visits Vicksburg, AZ and doesn’t run into favorite son John McCain, but does stop long enough to take this picture:

I don’t know if that’s for a restaurant or a nursery or a carriage shop, but I like it.

Can We ID a Plant?

Yes we can!

First, we have the preliminaries:


My name is Liz and I had been looking on your site for awhile to find out the type of wonderful cactus that I have. I have had this cactus for a long time but never knew what type it was. I have looked into books and browsed around I have seen many that look similar but can not pin point it. I was wondering if I could email you a picture and you could help me identify it?

Thank you,

Hello Liz,

We would be happy to try and ID your plant, email a photo or two and we will do our best.


Now we have the main event:

Good Afternoon Hap,

Thank you for taking the time to do this for me! Here I sent a couple of pics!

New Image2 New Image1

And finally, the ID:

Hello again Liz,

It looks like you have a nice Echinopsis aurea or commonly known as “Golden Easter Lily Cactus”. Native to Northern Argentina. It can be a bit rot prone so watch so be careful not to over-water and next time you repot I would suggest a chunkier cactus blend that is mostly 1/4″ lava or pumice, since these guys will often turn to mush if they stay too wet.

Take care,


Can You Help With a Cactus Identification?

Hey there, guys…
Sorry to bother you, but does the tagged specimen look like a positive id for Eriosyce occulta? The tag says that but it looks like more a copiapoa to me.


The untagged one looks like an eriosyce, too, perhaps?


Any help would be appreciated. Thanks again!


It’s not a Copiapoa. It’s probably an Eriosyce that has been greenhouse grown. The spines at top are black, and you can look for a taproot when you replant it. Or wait until it flowers for a final ID. There are others it could be like a Coryphantha, but it would be a rare Coryphantha with black spines, so it is most likely the Eriosyce.

I don’t know the untagged one, but I don’t think it is E. occulta. I’ll post it to the blog, but you may have to wait until it flowers – send us a picture when it does!


Canadian Cactus

A late-blooming cactus all the way up in Alberta, Canada.

Echinopsis photo sent to us from Amy and Darrel.

Candelabra Tree

Kale sends along a photo of a Euphorbia ingens that has grown very big in their yard. I estimate 20 feet tall. These are only semi-hardy in our area outdoor when they’re young. We must have had some warm winters back when this guy was young.

Check out this picture of an even bigger specimen in Kenya. Will it really get that big if left alone in Berkeley? Probably.

Captured by Robots

JBot sends along the latest photo from his garden, and he feels that the budded-out Echinopsises are watching him.

I agree, they are watching. They watch all of us.

Carrion Flowers


I visited Cactus Jungle more than 2 years ago, and I picked up two plants: Orbea (Stapelia) variegata and Faucaria felina (I also picked up a bonus snail that has lived with O. variegata). The F. felina had a little accident a year ago (or rather, when I was in a 4-car collision on a highway while toting a few flats of plants to my new apartment, most of the plant’s growths were severed and it’s been languishing ever since), but the O. variegata is doing well. It isn’t as vibrantly colored as when I purchased it, but I also cannot give it the light it needs on a regular basis, so it makes do with what it can get. And that seems to be enough here in the swamp that is DC! These are the first blooms on this plant. Yeah, they stink, and I love them.

I just wanted to share this photo with you!

The Homestead Hobbyist

Click to embiggen!

Chain Fruit Cholla


Dorena sends along this photo of a gorgeous desert cholla. I don’t know where she took the picture so I can’t be sure of the species, but I have my suspicions…

Chris' Photos, Part 1

Chris sends along some nice shots, with descriptions, so I turn over the blog to Chris today, tomorrow, and the next day.

Chris says this,

is a cool combination of a cactus and sculpture in the yard across the street from my friend’s house in Tempe.

Chris' Photos, Part 2

I turn the photography of the blog over to Chris again today.

Now, clearly this needs some explanation. So Chris says this,

is the front yard of the house immediately adjacent to the previous house with the grusonii/concrete balls combo. I call it “Cactus-henge.” I think the cacti are S. pringlei. The sad background is that in the space where “Cactus-henge” now sits, the prior owner had a wonderful cactus garden with many interesting cacti and other succulents. My friend said that a few specimens were saved prior to the move-out, but most of the garden was “bulldozed.” Anyway, I guess Cactus-henge is the coolest thing ever if you are really into S. pringlei …

Chris' Photos, Part 3

In which it is revealed that Chris is one of the nursery’s customers.

Now what did Chris say about this one? He claims we had it mislabeled! Actually, we never labeled it in the first place, since we weren’t sure, but we did bring out the big book of cactus when he bought it and picked out a mamillaria that we thought it might be. But now that the bloom is open it appears we were wrong. It…

is a picture of that “mammilaria” I bought a few weeks ago in bloom. I think it’s Thelocactus conothelos (I found a copy of Preston-Mafham’s “Cactus: The Illustrated Dictionary” at Moe’s — woo hoo!).

That’s not fair, I went to Moe’s on Tuesday and found nothing. However, looking in Anderson’s The Cactus Family, it certainly seems possible that Chris is correct! And I love the lemon yellow.

Christmas Cactus

Not that kind of cactus, but a cactus that was a christmas gift cactus.

Hello Peter,

Evidently my son and husband visited you a few weeks ago and picked up a little something for me for Christmas! Thanks for helping them make an excellent choice! I love my new, big, Cleistocactus, yay! For the two weeks prior to xmas, my daughter kept it in her apartment right by the couch. She watched it bloom and more buds get ready to bloom! You can see in the picture that Jack and Mike made a tall gift wrapped box for it. I had to wait for a while before I could “open” the box.

I will keep it just outside my kitchen window where I can see it every day…it’s near all my other cactus and succulents as well. Is there anything special I should know or do for it? It looks like it could use more red rock…oh, should I keep the supports tied around the four of them?

Perhaps I will visit you in the next month or two and redeem my cactus punch cards!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and Hap…


A happy story indeed!

Cleistocactus Trough

JoTo sends along a photo from probably 4 years ago of a trough we had out on the floor filled with Cleistocactus strausii, and wants to know if we still have the trough with the cactus in it.

Oh, how things have changed around here since then. We no longer have our growing troughs out on display, filling up retail floor space. Now we have plants for sale everywhere. Not an inch to spare, though if there is one, I’ll find it and use it.

As it turns out, those plants have just been finally put out on the floor in 18″ clay pots 2 weeks ago, and they’re about 6ft. tall.

This is one of them:

Colorful Aeoniums

Mike sends along a picture of Aeoniums, plus a picture of Benjamin next to a blooming cactus he took at the nursery.

Hi Cactus Jungle folks,

I stopped in this past weekend to pick up some aeoniums, and you were kind enough to let me take some pics of the beautiful plants (and whippets) while I was there. I’m attaching a couple.

Thanks again!

Thanks Mike for making my blogging job easier this morning!

Completed Project

Thank you Hap, Peter, Keith & Rikki! I really appreciate all the efforts of the Cactus Jungle team in helping us complete the Monkey Forest Road project. (I’m the one that’s been visiting your nursery every morning until the project was finished. 🙂 Your succulents in the interior atrium created a stunning effect. I thought you’d like to see a couple photos. The Monkey Forest Road gallery / cafe (on Grand Ave in Oakland) opens next week! Come on by sometime.
Take care,
Alexis, David Thorne Landscape Architect


I figure you all know these plants by now, and have read my answers to similar questions mamamamannnnny times before, so maybe you could handle this one for me? Best answer, that is also complete and accurate, will win one of our discontinued products. You never know what it will be, but it must be good!

Maybe a water wand, maybe a bird feeder. Hmmm…

So here’s the question and the pictures that go with it.

Dear Sirs,

Recently I got a cactus as a present but don’t know what kind it is.

Could you please help me to detect what kind a cactus it is and to see and tell me weather  is it sick (you can see that one leaf Is kind a sick) and what should I do.

Thanks a lot in advance,


Leave your answer for Petar in the comments between now and Tuesday afternoon, and I’ll pick a winner then. Maybe I’ll have arranged for guest judges too! Well, probably not.


Contra Costa Cactus

In the heart of Contra Costa County, between the Carquinez Straight and the John Muir National Historic Site, we find a stand of spineless Opuntia. Delicious!

Photo sent from Briones by Donna, who wants it removed.

Crassula Identification

A tricky ID? You tell me.

 crassula falcata

I picked this plant up last year but it didn’t come with an ID tag. It’s blooming and the flowers look pretty.


My answer is after the break Read More…

Crested Donkey Tail Spurge

RoseAnn shares a wild looking cresting Euphorbia myrsinites.

euphorbia myrsinites crest

From the Euphorbia Spurge (I guess that’s the name) that I bought there.  pretty cool..


euphorbia myrsinites crest closeup

Pretty cool, indeed.

Crockett Succulent Garden

Henie sends along photos of a garden we designed and installed a while back. I think it’s been almost 2 years.

That is a ridiculously bloomful Delosperma. Yowza.

And a not-quite-as-ridiculously bloomful Aloe striata.

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

Customer Photos

Rachel makes her own pots, and sends us photos!

Here are two of my recent favorites (both in pots I made myself!)


Also, my veggies are all doing very well (peas, kale, zucchini) except for my bell peppers?


Also, everyone who works at Cactus Jungle is SO NICE!
Thank you!!!!!


Wow! Those are great! Plants are a Delosperma and a Sedum commixtum.

Customer Photos

Janet sends along photos of her succulent planters that Keith helped her with.


Dave Sends a Photo…

…of a giant blooming cactus he got from Cactus Jungle!

Thought you would enjoy

A picture of a cactus we brought from you two years ago.

Nice. That’s one of our Echinopsis grandiflora hybrids.

Dragon Flower

Hi Peter,

Back at the beginning of May you identified my Huernia macrocarpa. Yesterday morning I looked and this is what I saw:

Found 3 blossoms and by last night there was a 4th. It is such a dark red!

Thanks again for your help last month.


Dragon Flower


I really enjoy your blog. Really getting into succulents now. Went to a garage sale a few weeks ago and bought this cactus . Could it be a rat tail?? Or an Aporophyllum??


Would appreciate any help you can give me.


It turns out your plant isn’t a cactus at all, but a stapeliad (in the asclepiad family) and the species is Huernia macrocarpa, also known as the dragon flower. Check out the cute as a button carrion flower here.



Dragon Fruit Cactus


Cactus Jungle Crew I bought a Dragon-fruit Cactus from you. It was in the green house. I wanna share a photo, one of your crew said to send a photo to see it in a happier place.

Dragon Fruit Cactus


Thanks! Lots of nice new growth on it.


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