Cactus and Succulent Show and Sale

Yesterday I went to the Missouri Botanical Garden for probably my shortest visit ever. We've been going almost every week for the free Wednesday concerts of the Whitaker Music Festival and those visits are just a few hours without seeing too much of the gardens -- this visit was much shorter.

My goal was the Henry Shaw Cactus and Succulent Society's plant show and sale, which is in the main (entrance) building. I never even made it into the gardens at all.


I was really interested in the plant sale to see if there were any other cold-hardy cactus that I could add to my recently created cactus beds. My wife and I got an early start and arrived two minutes before 9:00 -- we actually had to stand in a short line for a few minutes.

It's been a long time since I've been to a plant sale like this... actually, have I ever?

Lots of cactus and other succulents, most of them not cold-hardy so would need to be kept indoors over the winter. These were not the plants I was interested in, so I just breezed by most of them.

Saw some really cool ones though, but I was not going to be doing any impulse shopping today (for a change). The thought of having more cactus to overwinter inside was not appealing with our limited south-facing windows. A couple of glochids in a finger reminded me of one of the consequences of this.

This looks very much like the unknown cactus I have been growing for many years:

Is this what I have? Here's a recent photo of mine for comparison:

I'm pretty sure this is it: Stenocereus thurberi (aka Lemaireocereus thurberi),"Organ Pipe Cactus". Up to 21' (6m) tall -- I'm going to need a bigger pot!

By the way, the black spot has created a hole/scar but the plant is fine.

I'd normally be tempted to get a few of these Lithops aka "living stones", but have learned from Gerhard's blog that these are not as easy to care for as other cactus, having some fussy watering requirements:

I was moving around the room quite quickly, looking for cold-hardy plants -- I had a few things in mind. Taking photos slowed me down a bit but I was using my small point-and-shoot for ease of use. My wife ended up holding my box of plants as I had a few tippy moments while intent on taking the shot.

I was showing a lot of restraint!

As you may be able to see by the clock on the back wall, it's only 10 minutes after opening, and the room is filling up quickly. So glad we got here early!

Lots of bargains, as these little guys were only $2 each:

Unless you brought your own tongs, these were very difficult to pick up. I didn't try, but saw others making attempts.

I'll leave you with a hint of what I may have bought:

This cactus and succulent sale is still going on today (Sunday 30 June 2013), so if you're a reader in the St. Louis area and interested in a wide variety of these usually carefree plants, get down to The Garden!

I'll post about the plants I bought, the show part of this event, and another cactus-related display in the next few days.


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Lisa  – (June 30, 2013 at 10:08 AM)  

Succulents are big big big right now! We've added a few to our garden each year and this year my girls made me a succulent turtle, like this:

Hopefully the link works!

Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (June 30, 2013 at 10:59 AM)  

Seeing that photo of an organ pipe next to a photo of your mystery cactus, it's definitely possible. Don't worry, in a pot they'll never grow to their full size. They are fairly hardy though, considering that southern Arizona gets cold in the winter.

The last photo, are those baby Yucca rostrata???

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