Any cactus growers here?

schmiggle

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I wish they'd dump some laws concerning L. williamsii, imo they could let go of that now. If you get on the internet, you can see so many people propagating those things and selling them on the internet. There was a really good cactus nursery around here but the guy retired, he had some really weird plants.
Yeah I agree, the whole thing is kind of silly, particularly since Peruvian Echinopsis species containing high levels of mescaline are perfectly legal. But for my purposes I don't care that much, since I'm growing these essentially for looks and L. diffusa looks nearly identical to L. williamsi. The genus just has a gradient of characteristics from north to south that aren't all that different, as I understand it.
 

pannaking22

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Looks like super growth season has started for my Huernia zebrina, the thing is putting out new growth right and left. No flowers yet though. Maybe add some sort of fertilizer for that?


If anyone cares (and you probably don't, I know), I misidentified my cactus--it's actually Ferocactus hamatacanthus. @Galapoheros yours and mine will look similar as they grow, I think.

I ordered seeds of four very cool, but exceedingly slow growing species about a week ago--Obregonia denegrii, Strombocactus disciformis, Lophophora diffusa, and Geohintonia mexicana. I'm planning to grow them on gravel mixed with local silt, but I might change that to straight pumice or something along those lines. I'm going to add gypsum to the mix, I think, since they all naturally grow on calcium rich soils (though the first three usually grow on limestone, almost everything I've read has said not to use it, and plants definitely don't need it). My goal is to make them look as close to wild plants as possible, since all of those species often look bloated in cultivation (this is somewhat less of a concern with the Geohintonia).
Good luck growing them! Really like the look of the L. diffusa.
 

Galapoheros

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I have zebrina and a big ole diffusa has some branches on it now with three blooms. H. zebrina, apparently nobody has seen seeds, I can't find a pic of any on the internet.
 

pannaking22

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I have zebrina and a big ole diffusa has some branches on it now with three blooms. H. zebrina, apparently nobody has seen seeds, I can't find a pic of any on the internet.
That's interesting that no one does seeds, I wonder if it just grows well enough that it's easy to circulate cuttings through the hobby?
 

MikeyD

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I have zebrina and a big ole diffusa has some branches on it now with three blooms. H. zebrina, apparently nobody has seen seeds, I can't find a pic of any on the internet.

I have quite a few Stapeliads and many were grown from seed. My Orbea variegata actually ripened a seed pod recently too. You aren’t going to find seeds at a store as they are speciality succulents. I got most of mine because I was a member of the International Asclepiad Society and could access their seed bank. You can buy seeds of many Stapeliads online but there are also a lot of sources such as eBay vendors who sell small lots of seeds that give the buyer little chance of success.
You have to do your homework with these too, they won’t germinate unless you provide enough heat and surface sow with only a very light sprinkling of potting mix over the seeds.
Because these are succulent members of the milkweed family they have seeds that are very similar. Flattened disc shaped seeds with a seed floss that allows for distribution by the wind. And because these are in the Asclepiadaceae family and old world plants they are succulents and not cacti. Only two instances of true cacti are recorded in the old world, one in Sri Lanka and one in West Africa, both a Rhipsalis species. Other then that the only cactus in the old world has been introduced by man.
 

Galapoheros

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I have quite a few Stapeliads and many were grown from seed. My Orbea variegata actually ripened a seed pod recently too. You aren’t going to find seeds at a store as they are speciality succulents. I got most of mine because I was a member of the International Asclepiad Society and could access their seed bank. You can buy seeds of many Stapeliads online but there are also a lot of sources such as eBay vendors who sell small lots of seeds that give the buyer little chance of success.
You have to do your homework with these too, they won’t germinate unless you provide enough heat and surface sow with only a very light sprinkling of potting mix over the seeds.
Because these are succulent members of the milkweed family they have seeds that are very similar. Flattened disc shaped seeds with a seed floss that allows for distribution by the wind. And because these are in the Asclepiadaceae family and old world plants they are succulents and not cacti. Only two instances of true cacti are recorded in the old world, one in Sri Lanka and one in West Africa, both a Rhipsalis species. Other then that the only cactus in the old world has been introduced by man.
Have you specifically found seeds from H. zebrine? I've never seen any, I didn't even see pics of any on the internet. Does there need to be Xpollination?
 

MikeyD

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Well you have to look in the right place. You can find seeds for many species of Huernia, Stapelia, Orbea, and other genera. I wouldn't bother growing H zebrina from seed though, its one of the most common Huernia and shows up in greenhouses often.

Maybe try Mesa Gardens in New Mexico. They sell seeds and sometimes have a mixed pack of various Stapeliad genera seeds. Look under the Other Succulents link and for Huernia and Stapelia. There are quite a few American vendors on ebay who will sell seeds and small plants. If you aren't too experienced I would start with plants as it's not the best time of year to start seeds unless you will be offering artificial light over the winter if it's cloudy and gloomy or cool in your area.
 

Galapoheros

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I have too many H. zebrina anyway. I just think it odd that since it's a common plant found at nurseries around here that I can't even find seeds for that plant on the internet. It's only a curiosity issue, I don't need the seeds or plants. Have you come across zebrina seeds?
 
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MikeyD

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Yes. You can Google Huernia seeds and you will see multiple sources for Huernia zebrina seeds on the first page alone. These are more speciality succulents though so that means you may not be finding them locally, but they are easily available online along with many of the much rarer species.
 

Galapoheros

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I've seen sources, but "sold out", "not available" and never have seen a picture, that's strange to me, world-wide, no pics, sup with that. Mine never produces seeds. Do they need to be crossbred to produce seeds?
 

MikeyD

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No they can be self pollinated but if you have a collection of species they will readily hybridize as well, all it takes are some curious flies. Stapeliads have a complex pollination mechanism that behaves much like a lock and key. Flies are the predominant pollinators and their feet rake along a channel between the coronal scales in the middle of the flower and they remove the pollinia or individual pollen grains and then deposit them in a similar way while walking on the same or another flower. It's very much unlike plant species with sticky or dusty pollen made by plants that are pollinated by bees. These are really pretty highly evolved and the flies have a much easier time of it than if you were to try by hand.
 

WildSpider

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Does that ever suck. It's not like a cactus is fast growing and easily replaceable. :rage:
'The squirrels of DOOM' sure don't do what they're told otherwise they would long since have given up the 'of DOOM' part and just been 'The squirrels'.
 

The Snark

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'The squirrels of DOOM'
I'm thinking of a friend of mine who worked at Huntington Gardens. Had one cacti he spent 30 years bringing it to maturity. Another cacti he spent over 10 years monitoring to get a photo of it on the one night that it bloomed. The words of the Emperor come to mind: "And you my young Jedi/squirrel, you will not survive!"
 
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