Saturday, July 31, 2010

Lobivia 'Red Velvet'

We originally received this plant many years ago from Grigsby Gardens in Vista. We've had one planted out near our street with soil that's not the best and it's "survived" two winters with no protection from the rain and cold...and "survived" is the right word. It hasn't thrived. The plants themselves aren't that exciting, but the flowers are worth it. I took this photo this afternoon after we went for a drive with Ladybug and the dogs. I plan on planting one in a bed with excellent drainage this winter and see if it does better. Here's hoping!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

When you got no roots...flower anyway!

Steve Hammer, in his article in Haworthia Update, says it's helpful to him to say that his job is primarily to grow roots. And I've often expressed the same thing. But then...
This plant came to us with some problems: mealy bugs and some beginning rot. So out comes that sharp sterile blade and off goes the bottom of the plant. After letting it callus over, it's been sitting in the rooting tray. It hasn't had enough time yet to form roots, but - hey - why wait? You don't have to have roots to flower...and you can take that personally!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Obregonia denegrii

We haven't placed all the plants back where they belong yet so I almost tripped over this plant (It's in a 4" pot). The flowers are almost tripping over each other to get recognition. Beautiful plants.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Turbinicarpus schmiedickeanus ssp. schwarzii crest

These crests are great performers. The flowers come all at once each year for quite a display. We have several of these and they're all flowering right now.
And a close-up of the flower reveals even more beauty.
Enjoy your plants!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Mammillaria formosa

Our summer has been really slow in coming so we still have quite a bit of floral activity in the greenhouses. Mammillaria formosa is doing it's bit today.
When we finally do get summer, it can come with a vengeance. Today we got into the low 90s F and tomorrow we should hit 97F or so. But nighttime temperatures get down to around 60F. It all feels good to me!

Lithops Labyrinth

Lynn-Marie put together this little planter for the show. She calls it Lithops Labyrinth.

Graptoveria 'Opalina'

The last time I had Graptoveria 'Opalina' posted it was with two other plants. I think this is the first time I've posted it by itself. Again, I was out in the greenhouses when the sun was getting low in the sky and the image was irresistible. I wish we had more of these to offer; we're propagating as fast as we can. But for the time being we have to limit it's availability.
Finally, before heading off to bed, a "thank you" to all of you who have become "followers" of this blog. I'm honored. Please feel free to comment. The only things I don't permit through are specifically commercial posts unrelated to the subject and links to "adult" content - and some extreme profanity of course. Other than that, almost anything goes.

Aloe nobilis variegate

The variegations of this Aloe nobilis were so compelling in the evening sun yesterday that I just had to catch the image. It's such a striking plant and so easy to grow. We don't have any to sell at the nursery but hope to have some soon.
The warm air is settling in and I got the spraying of the plants done just in time. I went over to the grand opening of Kruger's Farm Store a few blocks away, bought some fresh blueberries and raspberries and came hope to make some a berry crisp for an evening repast. I love summer!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Echeveria 'Lola'

This is one plant I can never get enough of: Echeveria 'Lola'. Who needs flowers when the plant itself is a "flower"? And they're looking so nice right now.

Hungry Faucaria?

Today our mini horse, Ladybug, was complaining - rather loudly - that she wasn't getting enough to eat. She won. So it was only to be expected that when I glanced at these little seedlings it was as if they were crying to me. Or maybe snapping at me...
I need to add music to my blog so I could add some "monster" theme music.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Summer at the Nursery

I was reading Rosan's blog yesterday and she was commenting on the strange weather in Brazil. We've had our share of weird weather as well: a very long and cool spring with record rainfall in June and a July which is having a very hard time getting the coastal clouds cleared out before 2 in the afternoon.
That doesn't stop the greenery from taking over. The weed whacker gets plenty of use! This first image is one of the entrances into the nursery area with the Kiwi vine taking over.
The second view is of our deck and pond...our private sanctuary of sorts.
I'll be continuing spraying the plants in the greenhouses tomorrow as I hope to get it all done before our second hot spell of the season arrives, with the 90's F predicted for this weekend.
Whatever the weather,
enjoy your plants!

Turbinicarpus viereckii

I should list this as Turbinicarpus aff. viereckii since the description of this plant speaks of  "flowers magenta with white throats or completely white". It's also commonly known as a Gymnocactus. Take your pick. A striking plant.
It's been flowering off and on for several weeks now.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Pterocactus tuberosus

After the sale it was a nice surprise to come home and find that one of our Pterocactus plants was blooming. Enjoy.

One more sale is over...

Just a couple of shots from the sale this past weekend. Other photos tomorrow.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Show and Sale Update

Hey, there are a few plants left so if you're in the area come on over. For a Friday, today was quite good, and I know from talking to you that some of you have been to the blog. I really appreciate your coming out. And if you live in the Portland area but were thinking of not coming out, perhaps because you don't want to buy anything right now...I certainly understand that. Just come out to see the plants and to chat. I enjoy meeting you face to face.

I took some photos but will get more tomorrow. Until then
Enjoy your plants!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

OCSS Summer Show and Sale II

We'll be going here and there getting ready for the second show & sale of the summer which is taking place this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Portland Nursery, 5050 SE Stark St. in Portland. Hours: 9-7, Friday and Saturday; 9-5 on Sunday.

It appears there will be 5 different venders this time, offering the largest selection of cacti and succulents offered in the Portland area during the year. We'll be there with many more plants than in June and I'm sure there will be something for just about everyone.

As was the case last time, I'll probably be too exhausted to blog when I get home each day, but I'll try.

And to close off the night, here's a picture of the flower of Aeonium pseudotabulaeforme. Back at you as soon as possible.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Echinocereus rigidissimus var. rubrispinus

Today I did have a few minutes to get some shots of the Ruby Hedgehog in flower. They've been flowering off and on for a while now; just never seem to have the camera handy when I need it.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Another Cactus Sale

The second summer Show & Sale of the Oregon Cactus & Succulent Society (OCSS) is coming up this coming weekend, July 16, 17 and 18. This time it's at the Portland Nursery on Stark St. (5050 SE Stark) in Portland, 9 am - 7 pm Friday and Saturday and 9 am - 5 pm on Sunday. Come on out and join the fun.

And a special "thank you" to those of you who showed up at the seminar on Sunday. There were 15 in attendance and I hope it was a good experience for all.
Echinocereus rigidissimus var. rubrispinus was blooming today but I didn't have the time to get a picture, so we'll just have to do with this one from the archives. 

Enjoy your plants.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Epiphyllum oxypetalum

Last year we had two flowers at the same time on this plant. This year it's three. And we're still like little children when it blooms. No matter how tired we are, we have to go out and check it out and take a whiff of that wonderful aroma.

Known in popular culture as "Dutchman's Pipe" or "Night Blooming Cereus" (along with a few other cactus plants), it's a dependable bloomer every year. But of course it's just for one glorious night.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

"Keys to Growing Outstanding Succulents" at Portland Nursery

Just a reminder that on Sunday at 1:00 pm, I'll be giving a presentation titled Keys to Growing Outstanding Succulents at the Stark Street Portland Nursery. You can register for the seminar at
and, yes, I checked and the sign-up sheet is now working. They still don't have my name spelled right, but hey, one thing at a time. If you're in the Portland area, I'd love to have you in the audience. We'll be under the white tent straight in from the entrance.

Oh, and if you just happen to walk in to the nursery without'll be in good company. Just drop by and add your two bits.  See you then!

Succulent Ensemble

Have you ever tried to put together a dish garden of succulent plants and nothing you do seems to work. It always ends up looking artificial? Usually it means we're just trying too hard. For example, this group of plants. They're sitting on the greenhouse bench in no particular order. They just got put together by happenstance. And I think it works. Probably because nobody worked to make it work!

Mammillaria albicoma

This fuzzy little gem is from Tamaulipas, Mexico. The flowers can vary from greenish-yellow to cream. I tried to take a photo yesterday but it wasn't very, back to an archive photo. Hey, it could very well be the same plant.
Summer has finally arrived here and driven out the rain. Temperatures in the mid 80s F today, tomorrow around 95 and clear sunny days. Night time temperatures stay in the 50s. Yes, yes...I'm ready!
And so are the plants!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Echinopsis subdenudatum 'Fuzzy Navel'

I understand this is being reintroduced by ISI this year. It is very nice. I understand this selection was named by my old friend Mark Fryer in San Diego. Mark used to be a member of the Oregon Cactus & Succulent Society.

One thing about this plant is that it's dependable. Without doing anything special it pops up these flowers with regularity.

Echeveria 'Tsunami'

Another blue wavy Echeveria. There are a lot of "Blue Wave" types of Echeverias out there; this is one of the better ones.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Pleiospilos nelii 'Royal Flush' flower

I think these flowers on this plant are almost outrageous. The purplish plant body with little dots all over topped off with this other-worldly flower. If a child were to draw this in a school art project to draw a real-world plant, he or she would likely be told to go back to the drawing board!

More Grandchildren

OK. I couldn't resist throwing in another photo of our grand kids at the Fink farm. I think they were having a pretty good time.

A Day with our Grandchildren

This is one of our two granddaughters. She turns 13 this month and we celebrated by taking her and her older brother to the "Fink Family Farm" - a farm some friends of ours have here in Oregon where they have a menagerie of animals (horses, llamas, sheep, peacocks, geese, chickens, milk goats, and a dog, in addition to a large pond and an arboretum which they planted many years ago. We hadn't been out that way for a while ourselves, so it was good to visit and to permit the grandchildren some time out in the country. It was a lot of fun for everyone.
By the way, the photos were taken by our grandson.

Back to succulents tomorrow

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Rebutia albiflora

I'll start off the new month with a photo taken a couple of weeks ago of Rebutia albiflora. I've posted this plant before but not recently, and not this photo. I've always liked this plant because of its ease of growth, its compact growth and the fact that is nice little white flowers are produced so abundantly. What's not to like?

Individual heads are less than 1 inch (2 cm) in diameter but readily produce offsets, flowering in Spring to early Summer. Native to an area in northeastern Tariga near Nogales in southeast Bolivia, they do best in soils with a little more humus than most cacti but are tolerant to a variety of different planting mediums.
I hope to have some nice photos from the Fink Family Farm tomorrow night or soon thereafter. We'll see. In the meantime.....enjoy your plants!