Are there cactus seeds that I shouldnt try given my zone?

wilsocnMarch 14, 2012


A couple of years ago I started growing cacti thanks to one of those little variety packs you can pick up at places like Wal-Mart. It has turned out pretty well and I even started some San Pedro which are doing good also.

I was going to start another packet but I would like try something different. I noticed that they are selling what appears to be an old man cactus at my local Lowe's so I was thinking of trying that out.

I am just not sure if there are varieties that I should stay away from given my area. I start them under lights and after a few months they start going outdoors and during the warm/hot months my back deck is their home. It receives about 5-6 good hours of sunlight a day before it is shaded again.

Could I try something like Cephalocereus senilis given that under optimal conditions at my home it will receive a max of 6 hours of direct light and only from about March till cold weather gets here again? Will it do ok in a sunny window during the cold months?

I am open for any other suggestions as far as different types of cactus are concerned.

Thanks everyone

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I too have been suckered in the past by the easy sprouting seed packs of cacti at WalMart. I think the answer lies in what you are willing to do. I have scaled back on the bigger cacti as I run out of room at the sunny windows, and I'm not willing to spend money on lights and greenhouses and so on. I've had a Cephalocereus senilis since the eighties, but his life hasn't been a bowl of cherries. I've cut his cephalo off several times and rerooted a small piece as he just gets too big and heavy for me to carry in and out of my house. It's brutal. My neighbor about had a cow when he saw me cut the top off. It was such a cute little plant when I got it that reminded me of what my dh looks like when he wakes up in the morning. One thing I do is I don't water my cacti at all when there isn't enough sun to support good growth. If you are into cacti for the long haul, I would try to buy ones that stay small longer. My favorite one of mine is a gymnocalycium that has a jillion little off sets all in a tiny 3 in pot, and it blooms for me every year. Perhaps someone here knows of a smaller cactus that would be as cute as a C senilis.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2012 at 8:56AM
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Thanks for the advice, promise. I will definitely give the gymnocalycium a look. It is a nice looking plant and am happy to hear that it flowers for you. That is one thing I was curious about, whether our summers here are long enough for the most of these cacti to actually flower.

I placed an order with an cactusstore today for some seeds but I didnt see this post before actually ordering. Still I did pick up another variety pack (completely different from the wal-mart pack) and some old man cactus seeds.

Some seeds that I just started 4 days ago are starting to germinate now, so hopefully I can get them to grow a little faster by not making some of the same mistakes I have made in the past: under watering and too much light too fast.

Thanks again for the advice

    Bookmark   March 17, 2012 at 1:26AM
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ilovetogrow z9 Jax Florida see if they have something for you there. I too grow the packets from the store and I have not purchased anything from these people even tho I have known about them for 25 years. I have always wanted to grow opuntia from seed. Time for a push in my direction. LOL wilsocn I hope this helps you. Paula headed outside!

    Bookmark   March 17, 2012 at 8:31AM
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