Thursday, May 22, 2008

Echinopsis Season

Echinopsis 'Elegant Lady'

Currently I have five Echinopsis hybrids in bloom. 'Elegant Lady' is a Bob Schick hybrid that opened this morning. The flowers have a slight pink flush on the outer petals.

Echinopsis 'Haku Jo'

E. 'Haku Jo' is a Japanese hybrid with a pure white flower. Some cacti collectors believe this is a difficult cultivar to grow, but so far I've had no problems with it. It does not flower as readily as other hybrids, so having this new flower today is a treat!

There are thousands of Echinopsis hybrids available from various hybridizers. Many are derived from Harry Johnson, a California cacti grower who, in the 1930s and 1940s, produced many Echinopsis hybrids. He became famous for his hybrids with spectacular flowers, many of which are still popular today. A current hybridizer is Bob Schick, who, in conjunction with the Huntington Botanic Gardens in California, has produced about 130 hybrids that are in demand because of their unusual beauty, size and heavy flowering.

Echinopsis offsets will be identical to the parent, so if you find a hybrid that you like, you can be sure that the flowers that come from the offsets will be true to the parent. It is also easy to grow Echinopsis hybrids from seed, but there is no guarantee that the flower will be the same. In fact, the flowers can be completely different in color and shape.


Julie said...

How interesting! Who would ever think there would be that many hybrids! Have you ever tried to make an "Aiyana" cactus??? Someone should!!! Hey...your new blogger pic of you is very did you get all those colors in there??? I like this one, but I miss your old one because I loved the orange in it so much!!! :) (My fav color)

Cheryl said...

Lovely blooms.....I adore white with pink tinges.
Do you have to feed cacti??

No Rain said...

Hybridizing may be fun, but I don't need a new hobby. It takes so long and I just don't have the patience for it.
Lots of Photoshop posterizing brought out those colors in my photo. I don't like this one either. I may go back.

Fertilizing is is not necessary for cacti in the ground, but I do fertilize the ones in pots, mostly to assist in growth and flowering. Many people do not fertiize at all and their cacti do just fine. Others fertilize with every watering. I only do it about once a month and use a cactus fertilizer.

Vanillalotus said...

Gorgeous and great information. I will need to try some echinopsis they have such beautiful blooms. Interesting to know that seeds might not always be true to the parent.

beckie said...

I had no idea cacti were being hybirdized, or to that extent. If they would winter over here, I would ove to have a samll cactus garden. As it is I have the one in the house and that is all I have room for. It has gotten so big and need to do something with it. Any suggestions? Thanks.