My cactus garden

Discussion in 'Gardening for Water Conservation' started by Johnts71, Jul 11, 2008.

  1. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    Hello I just joined here to maybe get an answer to my mystery plants I have growing in my back yard and I started browsing and found this...ahh this is home. I moved into a new house which came with no grass in the backyard. I kinda joked with my wife and told her we should make it into a desert. I drew the design on a piece of paper and the rest is history. Most of the cacti I have was given to me. Some of the cacti are native to my area. I have always been a fan of cactus and found them intriguing. I started on my cactus garden back in march so most of my cacti are in their infant stage. Here are a couple of pics of what I have.
     

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  2. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member

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    Cool little desert you got there! The cactus in the second pic is some kind of Ferocactus,tho i'm no expert,could be wiszlezenii?
    In the last pic it looks like a Euphorbia ,or is it a cholla? You plan on getting more plants,and will you only be going for american plants? I'd get an Agave or two in there too.
     
  3. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Nice, though that vivid green lawn looks a bit out of place next to it! Also a fairly high risk that watering the grass will make the soil too wet for the cacti (they have very wide-spreading roots).
     
  4. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member

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    Hmmm never thought of that! But then i never water the grass,no need over here! I guess there may be a need in Texas tho,unless you just let it be and don't water it,see how long it lasts and then let it go brown. I've had a lawn hop completely brown and dead looking,yet after a single downpour its green again. Grass is incredibly tough and shouldn't need watering really.
     
  5. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    the 2nd picture is a Saguaro and its grown nicely. The other is a cholla which is growing like a weed.

    I have a bristle brush cactus which I believe is from mexico...I got a Agave victoriae-reginae...I should post a pic of everything I have :D I have serveral different types of opuntias...mainly ones that are native around here.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2008
  6. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    I got several different types of grass/weeds growing. Im growing grass from seed including kentucky fescue and bermuda and mixed in with different types of grass weeds. We recently got a lot of rain which is why everything is so green. Ya you got to be careful not to over-water cacti but never think they dont need watering...I water them once a week since its been so hot.
     
  7. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    the bermuda grass here is perfect for the heat we get. A lot of people like st augustine but you need to water it a lot so the sun wont burn it. Bermuda likes to turn yellow but it doesnt die...at least the 6 month drought we went though it didnt.

    ill post some pics of other cacti I have
     
  8. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    more pictures. I cant wait to see this garden grow. Its only 4 months old.
     

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  9. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member

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    Ooh nice,a Golden Barrel,Echinocactus grusonii. And is that first pic a mammilaria spinossisima
     
  10. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    you know your cacti!!

    ...the other one is agave victorian reginae
     
  11. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member

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    Well i know some cacti,and only because those are the ones i've grown ;)
    Theyre an interesting group of plants tho,especially when you study their biology,how they work.
     
  12. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    whats your hardiness zone? seeing that youre from england...whats the weather like? rain?
     
  13. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member

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    Zone 8/9 here. Weather sunny and windy at the moment but that could change. Been a lousy summer so far!
     
  14. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    so basically it doesnt get hot but it doesnt freeze right? sounds kinda like seattle weather. I converted my high temp to celsius and its about 35cel everyday here till october and im in zone 9 as well.
     
  15. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member

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    Oh boy does it get hot in the summer! Right now i got the window open blowing cool air in and its only 9am. We don't have the A/C that you guys get in every house,just in shops and cars here. And winter does freeze tho not like it used to.
     
  16. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    You might find one of these will help complete the look. Most folks comment on this one in my garden.

    Cheers, LPN.
     

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  17. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member

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    Oh wow,you found an old Viking settlement in your garden! ;)
     
  18. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    right now I have a rusty wheel from the 1950's and a old horseshoe...skulls kinda creap me out
     
  19. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    "Oh wow,you found an old Viking settlement in your garden! ;)"

    No ... just a slow moving bull in the summer heat.

    "skulls kinda creap me out"

    Shame really, it adds to the overall theme that the desert can be unforgiving and beautiful.

    Cheers, LPN.
     
  20. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    my cacti are growing nicely. Its funny how they love the rain. We had been going through a major drought but had recently got some rain from hurricane dolly.

    one of my opuntias was being eaten by a worm. Before I could kill him he made a hole in one of the pads. I was thinking about adding a new addition but cant decide what to get.
     
  21. Ron B

    Ron B Esteemed Contributor 10 Years

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    In addition to the lawn two other distractions are the flatness of the bed and the dominating fence behind. You could add interest and perhaps make conditions better for at least some of the succulents during downpours, when there might otherwise by puddling (depending on what the soil texture is there) by varying the height of the bed with berming and mounding. The fence could be softened and partially concealed by planting compatible non-succulent dryland shrubs in front of it. There might also be thematically and culturally suitable climbers that could drape it and be fanned out against it. If climate etc. suitable maybe even something like Pereskia, a primitive vining cactus that can grow fairly large.

    When you look at desert vegetation where cacti are a feature two things that are pretty consistent is that there are quite a few non-succulent shrubs (and sometimes even trees) mixed in with them and that the scene they grow in is open, even panoramic. You can often see for miles.

    The current Sunset magazine has an article about making backyards into "an oasis", if I looked at the right article the featured garden appears to be in a dry area. One of the points they emphasize is to make it so the garden seems to blend into the wider landscape beyond.
     
  22. jeanneaxler

    jeanneaxler Active Member

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    If you feel like having a touch of color you could add some portulaca.
     
  23. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    it may look flat but my cactus garden is sloped and I never have puddling.

    I do have some bluebonnet seeds I collected in the spring which would look natural in my garden
     
  24. Johnts71

    Johnts71 Active Member

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    Wow this is crazy. I will post some new pics when the weather gets sunny again. My cacti have grown a lot.
     
  25. Margaret

    Margaret Active Member 10 Years

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    Looking forward to seeing what a difference a year makes!
    Margaret
     

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