Your mad skillz & such

Hi there —

Any chance you can tell me what it is I’m taking care of here (in the foreground)? I bought it at a yard sale in July because it gave me Dr. Seuss flashbacks. Think maybe I haven’t been watering it enough, as it sure looks fluffier & happier since the rain.

And don’t judge my cacti/succulent bench mess! I’m trying to figure out where everyone needs to be for this our first winter together. I sure wish the kids not from CJ were already repotted in your soil, but, ya know, if dreams were thunder & all.

Thanks a ton,


You have a Senecio cylindricus (or possibly a Senecio mandraliscae). The plant looks happy and healthy, if a bit more Dr. Seuss-ey than is usual.


Sea Squill

Jennifer sends along a picture of a double-blooming Sea Squill. The photo is hard to see, but the sight is awesome.

Urginea maritima

Echinocactus Grusonii Questions

Good afternoon;

I have a couple of questions regarding my golden barrel cacti. I have five outdoor plants in a cactus garden on the northwest side of our home. I’ve noticed that the two smaller barrel cacti (one is about the size of a melon, the other the size of a grapefruit) have developed yellowish ribs and the space between each of the ribs is a light green. Are they not receiving enough sunlight? Should I place the barrels in pots and move them to an area with more direct sun? They get about 5 hours of direct sunlight this time of year.

I also water my barrel cacti about once every 10-14 days – are they receiving too much water? If it’s any help, I live in Newark, CA (about an hour south of Berkeley) and have bought some cacti from Cactus Jungle. I appreciate your feedback. Attached are two photos taken during the summer of the cacti in question.

Thank you,


From the pictures, the cacti look fine. In general, 5 hours is enough sun. A little yellowing could be a sign of too much water; reduce the watering to every 3 to 4 weeks except when you are getting over 90F. You can stop watering them now for the winter unless we have a particularly dry winter.


Succulent Circle

In which Keith gets a Shoutout!


Keith helped us with this succulent project and here are the awesome results. Thanks Keith!

-Amy and Sasha

Alaska Cactus

Dorena sends along this picture of cactus candles in Alaska.


And this picture of a peach in Idaho.


That is a nice peach.

We Get Cactus Questions

Hey Guys,

I have another one for your ID help … and it’s blooming for the first time (for me). Is it a Disco? Melo? Echino? species?



It’s a Melocactus, probably either Melocactus azureus or Melocactus violaceus.

Cactus in a Glass, UK Edition

Please can you you help with the following

I recently purchased a cactus (see picture Below) I was given to names either mammillarias – polythele and the succulent plant is a sedum or Crassula and Echinocactus

I was also told two different methods of feeding which are as follows:

1. As far as watering goes, you should give it a small amount, about half a mug every 10-14 days in summer and reducing down to a 1/4 mug every 20-28 days over winter.

from summer hill garden centre
2 Water once a fortnight March to October – suggest a cupful ( not a mug!!!)
October to March ignore it
Feed every month from March to October ( amount should be on whichever feed you get)
October to March do not feed

from Craig House Cacti

Please can you give me the correct name and how often I water it and feed it and
where I buy the feed

I am disabled and never looked after one.

Thank you, Mark

The cactus is a Mammillaria and the succulent is a Sedum. From the name of the nursery, I take it you are in Essex in England.

It’s going to be hard for me to give you exact instructions since I can’t tell what they are planted in. Terrariums are always a bit tricky, but it looks like maybe they are in small pots inside the glass surrounded by gravel. Assuming this is true, you want to make sure when you water that you only water right around the plant itself so that the water gets into the soil.

It won’t take a lot of water, maybe only a tablespoon per plant, but because it is so little water, you will need to water every week. You can water the cactus every 2 weeks in the winter, but the Sedum will want regular water year round. Make sure you don’t overwater – you don’t want any water sitting in the bottom of the glass.

As for feeding – Very little! since it’s in such a small terrarium. I would use a low strength liquid fertilizer like Liquid Seaweed (We use Grow More brand) and use only a tiny amount, no more than twice a year in spring and summer.
Good Luck,

Gene Wants to Know


I’ve been reading your blog for a while, and I really love when you tell which plant is blooming. Suddenly, I have a need for that too! Something popped a flower today, and I don’t know what it is. Can you tell? What are the other plants I have in that planter?



Nice grouping. And you’re in luck! I can name most of those for you. The blooming one is a  Titanopsis hugo-schlecteri. In front is Baby Toes, aka Fenestraria aurantiaca. Further forward and to the left, the dark one is Haworthia truncata. At the very front is Sedum spathulifolium “Cape Blanco”. And the last one, the light colored one on the right, is another Mesemb, but I’m not sure which species. Maybe a Cheiridopsis.


Does anyone here on the blog want to challenge any of my IDs? I’m open to suggestion.

Night Blooming Cereus

John F. sends along a nighttime photo of his night blooming Cereus in full bloom.


Nice Dudleya, too.

Driftwood, Meet Succulent

Mike from Alaska, while travelling along the California Coast, sends along a picture for you to enjoy.

A weird angle, but I think you get the drift, cough cough, so to speak.

Blooming Cactus

Hi Peter,

I came by the store at the end of June and showed you a few pictures of my blooming cactus I got from you last March. It was labelled a subdenudata but you thought it was an eyriesii since the flowers were pink. You asked for a few photos to be sent to you but I have been too busy and forgetful since then to send them to you, until now. So, please see the attached (I’m sending in two e-mails since I don’t know what the capacity of your e-mail account is).


Isolated flowers are still sprouting up and I think a new one is still coming. I think one sprouted what looks like a green fruit after blooming, also (it’s smooth with no needles).

Best regards,



Wow! That’s a slightly different color than the flowers we’ve been getting, but I do think it’s E. eyriesii.


Locally Available – Care to Try?

Dear Professional,

Hi, my Name is Nora. I have some really old cacti in the front yard of my house and would like to remove them or sell them. I am not educated about the plants, and during quick research of the plants I became lost in a pool of information on the diffferent types of plants, and removal process. I would like to to post them on craigslist to sell them, but I have no idea what to price them at. If they are not worth much I still would like give the plants to someone that appreciates the fact that they are 32 years old, and very large! They are pretty neat!


So I guess my question is, do you have any idea what these plants could be fairly priced at? Do you know anyone that may be interesed in these? Should I just have the gardener cut them down?

Clueless Cacti Owner

You have some very nice cacti!

The large single column is an Echinopsis terscheckii and could be worth a lot, from $500 to $1500 fully rooted in a pot at retail, depending on size and condition, but will be very difficult for someone to dig up and remove without damaging it. It should weigh more than 300 pounds.

The tall multi-branched is a San Pedro, Echinopsis pachanoi and this one would have to be taken in pieces – you wouldn’t be able to get it out of the ground in one plant. The cuttings are a couple dollars per foot, but beware that these are often sold to be ingested as a hallucinogen, so you may want to be careful about posting these on Craigslist.

The short multi-branched is an Oreocereus celsianus and if it can be dug up in one piece and rooted in a pot can be worth $300-$750 at retail, depending on size and condition. But it looks like that would be difficult for it, and it is not worth anything as cuttings.

I hope that is helpful to you.

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!

Reader Bloom Photo and Customer Testimonial – In One Spectacular Post!

Karen sends along a picture of her blooming Parodia.

Hello Peter – just wanted to share the new blooms on my Parodia rutilans. I bought this specimen from you over a year ago. At the time it had a crown of bumps at the top and around its belly. Nothing ever happened, but the bumps stayed there. This year some of the “belly bumps” fell off but the crown is blooming! So pretty! I especially like the little red flower coming from the center of the yellow. Your bloom food really works cuz I’ve had more blooms this year than ever before.

Thanks, Karen


Reader's Cacti in Bloom

Hello there, Cactus Jungle gurus!
I was planning on sending some pics of my blooming plants in hopes you could identify them, but I think one is the same Cereus Monstrose you posted earlier today [Friday]. The first (is) of the blooms of what I think this the Cereus Monstrose, the (other) is the unknown. My plants are not very exotic, but they are quite special to me in their own way. We’re just south of Sonoma and they seem quite happy here, so long as they’re protected from the heaviest frost. I’m hoping I can finally put some name tags on them after you have a look. Thank you very much!



The first is definitely a Cereus monstrose in bloom. The 2nd was a bit trickier to find, but it is Harrisia tetracantha, although it used to be called Cereus tephracanthus since it appears to be similar to other Cereuses and is a night-bloomer, but the flower structure is completely different so they moved it to Harrisia for good fun.

Read More…

Cactus ID and Questions

Greetings Cactus Jungle,

I will soon be purchasing some of your Ultra Soil Blend for Cactus and
Succulent and was hoping you could tell me what kind of cactus is in
the photos below (I found it languishing outside an antique shop and
brought it home to provide it with a little better care). It’s
currently about 23″ high and sits in a 7″ square pot.


In addition, could you answer a couple of other questions regarding
the cactus:

1. Again, what kind of cactus is it?

2. Could you recommend the optimal size pot for its size?

3. How much direct sunlight would you recommend for it during the hot
days of summer here in Richmond, VA?

Many thanks for any advice you could offer. I appreciate it (and wish
your garden center were here in my neck of the woods).



Your cactus is a Cereus Monstrose, a genetic mutation off a more standard Cereus species. For pot size we recommend allowing enough space below the soil line for root mass that will match the amount of plant mass above. A 2ft. cactus would usually want to be in a standard 12″ pot, but it depends on height as well as width.

I can’t give you exact care for your location since I’m not familiar with your climate. But if you are hot you may want to provide it some afternoon shade.

Idaho Cactus

Rachel from Idaho sends along prickly-pears-in-bloom photos from the Twin Falls area of Idaho.

In case you were wondering, Rachel is Hap’s Auntie and these are at his Mom’s, so we planted these in previous years and you can see how well they’re doing!

I could name the species for you if I was willing to. But I’m not. So no species names for you!

Here’s the big ditch that’s nearby, also known as the Snake River Canyon.

Along with a statue of some twins.

I took these 2 pictures last fall when we were visiting. Idaho!

Succulent Weeds

Hey guys:

What in the heck is this growing up beside my H. attenuata? I noticed it a month ago, but it has started morphing into the growth that is now evident on the edges of the leaves.



That’s a Kalanchoe tubiflora, also known as a Mother of Millions because of all the little plantlets coming along the leaf edges. In other words, it’s a succulent weed.

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.

Some Questions are Easier than Others

I’ve had this fellah for a few years now and I’ve never seen this kind of growth before. What is it?? Plus, I’m not sure what kind of columnar it is since I got it from a chain-store nursery.




That’s an Echinopsis pachanoi, also known as San Pedro Cactus, and the new growth at the bottom is a new branch. Congrats!


Bearded Iris

Dani, near Santa Cruz, sends along a photo of her Bearded Iris.


Does anyone know Bearded Irises better than me who can tell us what the variety is? One could start looking here. Of course, we only sell the Pacific Coast Irises at the store, but that doesn’t mean we can’t admire others.

Haworthias in Trouble?

Hi, love your blog! I’ve had these haworthia plants for about 1-2 years, while they do ok (haven’t managed to kill them yet), but they just don’t look as healthy and lush as the ones I see in nurseries and pictures I see online. They get morning sun until about 10-11, then they’re in shade for the rest of the day. They’re a little dry looking, I’m hesitant to water them too much fearing of root rot. I water about once every 2 weeks. Any idea how I can make them “better looking”?

Thanks in advance!

Your Haworthias look fine. In fact, they look great. I would say you are doing a stellar job with them. If you are at all concerned that they are a little less lush than some others online you’ve seen, in general that’s because other people do grow them with more water, but they are very rot prone when grown that way, less healthy, and less likely to survive long term. If you want, you can reduce the amount of light they get so that instead of 3-4 hours of morning sun they only get 2 hours, and then they will be less red, more green, and a little more lush. But considering that your plants look very healthy and natural, I’m not sure I would change anything.

Fenders Hedgehog


Borrowed from Auntie Rachel’s facebook page, it’s an Easter in Arizona Echinocereus fendleri in bloom.

Stunning flowers.

ID Fest

Dustin, who you should be following at CactGuy, sends along some plants to help with ID’ing.

Hi Peter,

I was hoping you could help me ID this random assortment of succulents that I have received from various people – I really am hopeless on the non-Cactaceae front!




With help from Rikki and Brian we came up with these:


The large purple plant is Kalanchoe ‘Desert Surprise’, and those are surprising colors for a desert, so I guess the name is apprpriate. To the right is an Echeveria “Topsy Turvy” and then Pleiospilos nelii. Around the back under the large leaves is Crassula ovata, and the small red-leafed plant is another Kalanchoe, probably Kalanchoe blossfeldiana.


Texas Yucca

I see my sister’s Yucca is in full bloom.

She lives in Austin Texas where it’s been warm recently. How warm? Mid 80s, so warm enough.

Cactus in Bloom

Mr. Subjunctive from Plants are the Strangest People sends along a funny.

From Iowa.

This is growing on E Washington St. in Washington, IA; the photo was taken 26 March 2012. I’ve seen it on previous trips as well, and thought of y’all, but things hadn’t worked out to take a picture of it, and we don’t actually go to Washington that often.

I think the bloom is new since the last time I saw it. Both the color (black?!) and form (more like an aroid flower than a cactus flower, really) are noteworthy. I presume, based on the bloom, that this is a Discocactus of some sort? It’s a slow grower, but I suppose that’s to be expected for any Iowa cacti.

-Mr. Subjunctive

First you need to click the picture above to get a closer look at the details. And then, here’s a Discocactus in bloom, so we can judge the similarities and determine the species.

From the Catalog of Botanical Illustrations, Department of Botany, Smithsonian Institution

Plate Number: 1806
Publication: The Cactaceae Vol. 3 Pl 24, Fig 4
Client: Britton, N.L. and Rose, J.N. – Size: 11×14

Discocactus bahiensis (Cactaceae) – Type; Collection: Rose, J.N. 19783, Brazil, Bahia; flowering plant.
Artist: Eaton, Mary Emily – Date unknown – watercolor

No, definitely not a Discocactus.


November 2023

US Constitution


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Email your questions to:

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