By Jordan Laio, Networx
Do you sometimes forget to water your houseplants? A cactus, by definition, is a plant that is designed to withstand long periods of drought. And, contrary to popular belief, cacti grow in a variety of climates. For instance, the species Coryphantha vivipara var. vivipara reportedly can withstand temperatures down to -20ºF!
Did You Know that Cacti Bloom?
Some individual cacti are known to be hundreds of years old. While it may take a cactus years to produce its first flowers, the wait is well worth it. The passionate colors that spring forth from their sometimes dull and spiny bodies have the same other-worldly effect as an urchin blooming from a seafloor rock. Some of them, like the flower of the albispina variety of Oroya cactus, resemble the exotic dragon fruit, while others resemble more familiar flowers like the passionflower and the daisy. The Opuntia bergeriana flower, for instance, resembles hibiscus.
Where to Place Your Cactus Garden
The most important thing to do before starting any cactus garden is to determine where you will locate it, and then find cacti that are adapted to the conditions in that location. These days, cacti are available for purchase from many garden centers and other distributors, where there should be salespeople able to help you choose cacti appropriate for your climate and living situation. But here are some general tips for growing and maintaining a cactus collection.
If growing indoors, place cacti on a windowsill where they will receive maximum light. A south-facing window is best. Give windowsill cacti a nice turn every every couple weeks so they don’t grow lopsided. Some easy-to-grow indoor cacti are Epiphyllum species and cultivars, and Myrtillocactus geometrizans.
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