Friday, January 30, 2009

Lobivia silvestrii

Lobivia silvestrii variegata is one of the most commercially available cacti. The Chinese are selling them in their thousands. These variegates have to be grafted because they lack chlorophyll.

Christate variegates of this species have been making it to collections. There are several forms of Lobivia silvestrii because they have been hybridised extensively with other Lobivia species and with Echinopsis. Hybrid species are selected mostly for their pretty flowers which range from yellow to red and there are some with bicolored flowers.

Other variegates have been selected for body colour or thickness. Thus, one can find orange coloured L. silvestrii. I find that the yellow variants turn dark orange at the top when held in very strong sunlight producing flower shoots that not all of them open.

Lobivia silvestrii was named Chamacereus silvestrii when it was first discovered. It was eventually placed in the Genus Lobivia and subsequently the Genus Echinopsis, because the Genus Lobivia has now been amalgamated with Echinopsis. A trend not everyone agrees with. The common name is peanut cactus.

The debris on some of my pictures are caused because I am always accidentally toppling the cacti in my greenhouse due to lack of space.

The monstrose plant on the left is also the same species. It is a mutation that has occurred in a private cactus collection in Malta. I have seen similar mutation forms (yet distinct enough), from Spain eBay sellers. The monstrose form is not very easy to keep and needs to be re-grafted after a few years.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Aztekium hintonii monstrosa

This is a proliferous form of Aztekium hintonii. The Genus Aztekium consists of only two species A. ritteri and A. hintonii.

A hintonii was discovered only in 1991 together with another new species Geohintonia mexicana by George S. Hinton. Both species of Aztekium and Geohintonia grow on vertical gypsum hills in the State of Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

Cactus badges from Poland

This is a set of 16 badges from Poland. I do not know why they did not write the name of the cactus club on the badge. Would have been more interesting.

Polish cactus club badges (2)

Cactus badges from Poland

Polish cactus clubs are very prolific as regards to badges.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Astrophytum caput medusae

First described as Digitostigma caput medusae, this plant clearly belongs to the Genus Astrophytum. Discovered as recently as 28 August 2001 and described in 2002. The cactus on the left is not a normal plant as the tubercles are much more succulent.

I am not sure if this is a hybrid or whether it is just a freak. I aquired it from eBay. Compare the tubercles with that of a normal plant (see below left). Probagation is by seed or by tubercle grafting. Each seed pod produces few seed. The tubercles are very easy to graft.

The name caput medusa refers to the thin long tubercles resembling the Greek Mythological woman Medusa whose hair was turned to snakes.

When first appeared on the market the seeds were selling as much as 5 Euro per seed and young plants for 100 Euros.

Obregonia denegrii

This fabulous cactus is one of my favorites. It has dark green stem and the cristate form is much sought after by collectors. I have had the pleasure of finding species of these cacti at San Vicente, Tamaulipas, Mexico. They are very difficult to find.

Variegated forms of this cactus are now making their way to collectors. One can find partially variegated and complete variegated forms as in this picture. Variegated forms have to be grafted because of lack of chlorophyll.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A few more Astrophytum hybrids

Astrophytum can be induced to offset by beheading them. Grafting the pups would increase their rate of growth dramatically. In winter some of the variegated forms will turn orange to red and back to yellow as the weather will gradually warm up.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Astrophytum myriostigma crest

Again, this shows how diverse Astrophytum cultivars can be. This one is a cristate form of A. myriostigma.

See also my older posts for more freaky Astrophytums.

Astrophytum crests and monstose

Astrophytum ornatum on its own roots. A very large cristate form.

A. myriostigma monstrose. This is actually a hybrid and is known as 'lotusland'.

The picture on the left shows another type of myriostigma which offsets at the top as well as from the side. This is called proliferous type and strictly speaking is not a monstrose but an aberration non the less.

This is a monstrose form of A. myriostigma. Each individual part is small unlike its original species.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Uebelmannia pectinifera variegata

This is a beautiful variegate of Uebelmannia pectinifera. Uebelmannia comes from the State of Minas gerais, Brazil.

There are various types of this species even in its habitat. Plants can be grayish or green and the rib number varies from 15 to 18. Spines varies from pectinate to a more scruffy form.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

USA cactus badges

These are U.S.A badges. Not all of them are cactus club badges. There are some that are state badges, stamp commemoratives badges and badges created by individual persons. All depict cactus themes.

Cactus club badges/lapel pins/patches

These are the Russian cactus club badges that I managed to collect. There are few cactus club collectors in the world. I only know of less than 10 persons.

Click on picture to enlarge.

More variegates

There are many Astrophytum variegated hybrids, This is because all Astrophytum specioes hybridise with each other. The first picture shows a variegated cristate Astrophytum, grafted on Echinopsis species.

Variegation in Astrophytum myriostigma v. nudum , most probably of hybrid origin. Some variegates change colour with temperature and the reddish colour will turn back to yellow in spring and summer.

Variegation in Stenocactus is more rare.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The variegates

Coryphantha elephantidens is totally variegated and thus has to be grafted. It is not an easy plant to grow and does not like cold temperatures , otherwise it get marked easily.

Variegated Astrophytum asterias are getting more common among the cactus world. They produce offetes that can be grafted or rooted if they have some chlorophyll.

Echinopsis eyresii grows well on its own roots.