Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Harbinger?

Mammillaria gracilis var. fragilis


Perhaps my cacti know it's spring, even if I don't. This M. gracilis v. fragilis decided the time for flowering is now, rather than late next month as I expected. The yellowish white flowers are tiny, just like the cactus, which doesn't grow more than four inches high.


M. gracilis v. fragilis has brittle offshoots that are easily detached from the main stem. Fragilis means exactly that, brittle. These detached offshoots are easily propagated. However, they will not flower for the first three years. If I planted all the offshoots that have fallen off the four plants I have, I'd probably have two or three hundred little guys by now.


This Mammillaria species looks best planted as a grouping, crowded into a small, shallow container. Most of the offshoots that have dislodged go into one or two “baby pots," as I call them. Well, not most of them, some of them. The rest are fending for themselves in some landfill somewhere.

8 comments:

jodi said...

I'm so very much enjoying visiting your blog every day. Seeing the cacti and other interesting plants from your very different climate is a good antidote to the bad attack of winter we're having here. One day I hope to visit Arizona for myself.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Another lovely cactus picture.

I've noticed that your posts always stays at the top of the Picks page and the date changes on them to remain at the top. Are you post dating them on purpose or is that a Blotanical thing happening?

WiseAcre said...

You may yet inspire me to grow some catcus as houseplants. At this time of year thoughts of moving to the southwest also keep running through my head.

Teri C said...

Thought I would stop by and tell you how much I love your blog with all this wonderful information. Do you mind if I ever do some sketches from your photos?

No Rain said...

Jodi,
Glad you are enjoying my blog. Don't come to Arizona between June and October!

Robin,
Thanks. No, I don't do post dating on purpose. I post late at night for the next day, sometimes between 11 pm and midnight. It's dated for the next day--however, I usually post after midnight so it's the right date. I guess I'll have to visit Blotanical and see what you mean. I usually only go there once a week or so when I want to check out new blogs.

Wiseacre,
You can't find an easier houseplant in cacti, as long as you have lots of light and little water. As I mentioned to Jodi, better not come in summer!

Teri C.
Feel free to use any of my photos as inspiration for your beautiful work.

January 30, 2008 9:09 AM

Julie said...

As you know, I have read your entire blog, and I have to say this is my favorite cactus to date! I had remembered it from it's stars that the children were drawn to in your previous post about it!! What beautiful flowers and "stars"! I think I will have to order one online somewhere...I really BELIEVE I need one! LOL
Julie

No Rain said...

Julie,
You have a good memory! This Mammillaria species is cute, but I think the cutest of the M. genus is the saboae. (11/2/07) It's cute because it's miniscule, and the spines are even more star-like than the M. fragilis. However, M. fragilis is easy to find--M. saboae is not, and it's a more difficult species insofar as root rot.

Julie said...

Hi Aiyana...just wanted to tell you that I ordered my very own Mammillaria gracilis var. fragilis...can't wait for it to arrive...should be in next week or so...will post a pic when it gets here!