Yummy Honey Plants

Hey Guys,
Thank you SO much for taking the time to answer my question. I was in the City yesterday & discovered this growing in my old neighborhood…..since my partner & I collect unusual cacti & succulents, I was wondering if you could identify this specimen so I can find one for my Honey for his upcoming birthday.

Thank you,


It is a yummy Aloe marlothii! One of the Mountain Aloes of South Africa.

And we have cute babies as well as a few larger in stock. I even have a 15 gallon one at our grow-space that looks like the larger one in your photo…

Take care,


We Get Questions

It’s a short question. Bear with us, because the payoff is worth it.

I was wondering if you could help me identify a plant, it is a succulent, I have attached a picture of it – it’s the little plant climbing up out of the globe.
Thank you!

And here’s the picture of the plant in question:

Cute! Seems tricky to get the plant to grow through the side holes. Of course, the plant didn’t actually grow through those holes so much as the stems were placed there.

And here’s Hap’s answer to the question in question about the plant in question:


It looks like Crassula ‘Tom Thumb’ or one of the similar dwarf clones from the Crassula perforata group.

Take care,

Hap Hollibaugh

Hummingbird Flowers

Matt in Portland, sends along these great photos from a friend of his in Manhattan Beach,

Up first we have a cute little hummingbird hovering around the Aloe arborescens blooms. Click to embiggen.

And now we have a closeup of the feeding little bugger. Notice how he rests on the stem.

Thanks, Matt!

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!

An Aloe Grows in berkeley

Hello guys-
I was just at your store last week visiting from San Diego. I wish I lived closer so I could buy more than the pink garden gloves I got! My sister lives in Berkeley and she takes me to your nursery every time I come up. We love to roam around and find out the names of some things in our garden which are unnamed.

I’d like to know if you could please identify this aloe for me. Seen here, it is about 3 years old and was given to my sister by her succulent guru who has a fantastic garden, but doesn’t always remember the names of her plants!

Thanks very much,


You have an Aloe striata v. karasbergensis. We love this aloe but it is a lot slower growing than the Coral Aloe species it comes from.


How to ID a Plant in 12 Easy Steps

Bonnie sent Keith a bunch of photos to ID. Can you help with this one?

Hi Keith,

Last plant photo. What is the name of this plant?

Appreciate your assistance.


This last one is a Gasteria. I’m not sure the species. I’ll post it to the blog tomorrow and see if we can get a response.

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

Mystery Succulent

I am Pat and this is my question plant. Hope you can help me identify this mystery succulent.


It is Senecio kleiniiformis, an interesting succulent daisy from South Africa and hardy outdoors to about 26 degrees.


That was a short answer. Any other questions?

Big Crest

Genn from Idaho has a really big cresting ghost Euphorbia lactea that she’s shared with us.

This is what happens when you grow one successfully for a few years. The crest grows bigger with fans on top of fans.


Euphorbia Question from Florida

would it be ok if i sent you a photo of something about which i have a question? i have a euphorbia with multi branches and within the past week little yellowish dots have appeared where one might expect spikes to be. hard to describe, thusly if i could send you the picture it might be more helpful.

thank you.

vero beach florida

And here’s the picture:

And the good news is…


It looks like Euphorbia trigona and the dots are unopened blooms!


Identifying Aeoniums

Sometimes we can identify Aeoniums, other times we prefer to just make up names. What do you think?


It was really nice meeting you this week. You have a fantastic place and some really fine specimans of cactus, especially Aeoniums. The pictures attached may be Aeoniums but I have not been able to identify them. Can you tell me if they are Aeoniums? If not, any ideas? By the way, within this planter are two different types of the same plant. The really purple ones, and the less purple with more green.

I really appreciate it. I have one other species of Aeonium I’m going to send pictures of. I cannot identify it either.

Have a great weekend. I’m sure we’ll see you again.


The unknown one will have to remain unknown for now. I’ll blog it to see if anyone else can come up with a cultivar name. Otherwise, I recommend Aeonium “Wizard”.

The other lower ones, green with pink edging, are Aeonium subplanum.

Sara's Stapelias

Sara’s Stapelias were about to bloom last week, when we helped her identify the plants, and this week the flowers opened.

Yay! Just don’t get too close.

Just Hanging Around, near the Begonias.

Pale coloring – maybe we can identify the species now.

Beetle’s eye view

And the verdict is… Stapelia gigantea! I see from our records that Chris wins the grand prize and Sally gets squat.

Red Yucca in Bloom

Samuel took photos in Crockett and sent them to Priscilla who forwarded them to us.

It’s Hesperaloe parviflora, and not really a yucca. While closely related to the yuccas, Samuel also took a picture of a variegated Yucca elephantipes in bloom, and it’s a mite bit different.

Personally I like this one better. But then it’s also more common around these parts, so maybe my taste is less refined than Samuel’s.

Friday Guest Whippet Blogging

Roland came by and took some pictures at the nursery of me and the whippets. Here’s one of Jason.

Those eyes! It’s like the follow me wherever I go!

Stapelia About to Bloom

To my double surprise in the past two days I found a hand me down cactus in bloom and then found the blog entry from September 9th to help me identify it. I would like to include a picture of the gigantic flower bud that has developed on the Stapelia plant. I have been able to start a few propagated pieces that also have tiny blooms starting! I’ve never had a cactus bloom so this is quite the accomplishment for me. And i feel like if I wasn’t reading your blog I wouldn’t have been able to propagate the new pieces as well as i have.

I am have been a blog subscriber of yours for a year or so and it has been a joy learning about cacti, succulents and the like from your blog alone.

Please let me know if this is truly a Stapelia. Just like to know what i’m working with.

Thanks for your time.



Glad we’ve been able to be of help! Your succulent is indeed a Stapelia, and that is a giant flower about to open. Very exciting! Send photos to share on the blog when it’s open.


Canadian Cactus

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

Echinopsis photo sent to us from Amy and Darrel.

Santa Rita

Our readers do a good job getting us some nice cactus photos.

Hello cactus jungle blog …. This is a nice big cactus on our way home. It has took on a nice purple this yr. But it could just be we are looking for them. We’ll get a blooming picture next time.

Phil. And son Henry.

Thanks for the Opuntia santa-rita photo!

Kew Begonias

I was thinking that today I would blog about the relationship between chemical fertilizers with a focus on potassiums, mycchorizal fungi and flatworms. But then this email came in with such pretty pictures from Kew Gardens that I decided not to delve into the soil, metaphorically speaking, today. Ah well, the opportunity is lost for good now.

Anyway, enjoy the view from Kew.

Hi, Hap

I took this pic at Kew Gardens in the Mediterranean section. Any idea which type of begonia (if it is really a begonia) this is? It’s stunning, and I think the fuchsioides comes somewhat close to this one.

Thanks for any help with this.


It looks like it is either one of the new ‘Dragon Wing’ or ‘Phoenix’ Begonias that have been introduced over the last couple of years. I am not which clone it is, but it is a very nice one!


Reader's Tall Cactus

Julian sends along a picture of a very tall cactus that seems to have grown too big for them. They’re looking for a new home for it. I’m guessing Stenocereus, judging by the long spines, but I’m not sure. Any ideas? Know anyone who wants one?

Acacia? or Euphorbia? Maybe Chorisia?

Mark writes in with a quick photoshop of his front yard wanting a plant for a hole in front of his window.

Hello Folks at Cactus Jungle.

I recently pulled a huge bush/tree thing I hated out of my front yard and have been in search of a good replacement. (I’m actually in a hurry to find something new because it left my entire living room exposed to the street traffic — poor planning, I know.) One plant I was considering for a replacement is an acacia, specifically an acacia baileyana ‘purpurea’ and was wondering if you had any thoughts. If you had positive feedback on that choice, is there any possibility you have them in stock? (I realize it’s not a succulent…)

The reason I pulled what was there before (an Angel’s Trumpet), was because it was really messy — dropping leaves all over my cactus and succulents below. And I wanted something more colorful that would also complement the colors of the house. (Below is an embarrassingly unprofessional Photoshop’d exploration of what it might look like.) But I am certainly open to other suggestions, if you had any.

Pluses would be drought tolerance, not too many dropped leaves or berries, grows quickly but not too large (I do plan to prune though), enough foliage to create a visual barrier, but still let some light into the front of my house. Sculptural is always nice too. Originally I was jones-ing for a beautiful, giant euphorbia. But I know it would cost a bazillion dollars and might not serve as a good screen from the traffic.

As I’m writing this I worry it might be sound like I’m asking for free design advice. But I trust you’d say so if it felt that way to you.

Thanks for any input.

P.S. Speaking of huge euphorbia (I saw your recent blog entry about it), I have to remember to send you photos of ones I saw in Southern Africa recently. Enormous giants! (Wait, that’s redundant, isn’t it.) Massive. And all over the place. And in bloom.


Now we do have the Purple Acacia in stock, so maybe he’ll get that and all will be good, but if you have any other suggestions for Mark, let us know right away!

Yucca Blooms in Crockett

From Priscilla, photos of their yucca in full bloom in Crockett.

And a closeup is in order too.

Creamy bell shaped flowers. Nice photos! Thanks, Priscilla.

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.


Hap and Peter,

Attached are pics of the vandalized Stenocereus thurberi. Feel free to blog about it or not. I’ve subseqently trimmed the top at a 45 degree angle and applied hydrogen peroxide. After it heals I’ll try applying some kelp extract to the tubercles to see if I can induce branching. I’ve read also that 0.1% benzylaminopurine works …


Haworthia Identification and Sharing


Cactus Jungle is quite a finding! I got many ideas from your displays. Anyway, The picture of this Haworthia shows how big compared to my hand.

The haworthias in the other arrangement are tiny next to the unidentified one.

Also, I wanted to share the other arrangement I made after a visit to a store in LA “the juicy leaf”.

It may inspire you to create more things in your store.

Thanks for your help.


It looks like you have a Haworthia retusa, although there are other similar Haworthias.

Nice to see a new succulent store down in Venice. I used to live there and it sure has changed a lot since then.


Succulent Question

David called the store to ask us what was happening to his succulent. I asked him to send us a photo and here it is.


This is the plant. The normal form is in the foreground.


The plant is Graptopetalum paraguayense, and the “deformed” part is what we call “Crested”. It is a genetic mutation, usually caused by a virus, and it makes the growing tip of the plant grow out linearly rather than the normal branching and rosette. There’s nothing to worry about – crested plants are often prized and collected.

Austin's Girlfriend Likes Succulents

We posted a picture of Austin’s garden in Redwood City earlier this year. Now he has more for us to post.

Cactus Jungle,

I have been to your nursery multiple times, and I’m also the high schooler who asked you questions about sustainability for a school paper this spring. You guys were nice enough to post a picture of my garden on your blog. I want to say thank you for doing that because it really made my day. Anyways, since then, I have gotten my girlfriend interested in succulents (she really is amazing). I am asking if you would be kind enough to post a picture of her small garden on your blog, so that she knows that people like what she is doing and that she’s doing a good job. I will attach a picture of her garden, and her name is Christina.

Thank you for taking the time to read this,

Sure enough, there’s a picture of the start of a new succulent garden.

I see Cotyledon orbiculata in bloom, an Agave marginata that will outgrow the spot in about 2 years, some Sedum and some Senecio, and a bunch of nice Echeverias tucked in among the rock wall. Good job, Christine!

Agave Parryi has a Pup

John in Crockett sends along a picture of their Agave parryi and it’s fresh new offset popping up a little ways away.

Prickly Pear Pads

Elena wants to know if we want her fairly large Opuntia saxitilis.

So you know, I don’t think that could have been dug up in one, or even two pieces. So pads it is!

Nice plant.

February 2024

US Constitution


We Get Questions

Email your questions to:

blog [at] cactusjungle [dot] com