$8 uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 mm As Office Products Office School Supplies Writing Correction Supplies uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 mm As Popular products uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 mm As Popular products Pen,BLX,Rollerball,mm,doiindia.com,/melanocratic419186.html,As,.5,$8,Series,uni-ball,VISION,ELITE,1832410,Office Products , Office School Supplies , Writing Correction Supplies $8 uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 mm As Office Products Office School Supplies Writing Correction Supplies Pen,BLX,Rollerball,mm,doiindia.com,/melanocratic419186.html,As,.5,$8,Series,uni-ball,VISION,ELITE,1832410,Office Products , Office School Supplies , Writing Correction Supplies

uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 Now on sale mm As Popular products

uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 mm As


uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 mm As


Product description

Features BLX ink, black ink tinted with color. Differentiate yourself with deep, rich business colors. Patented airplane-safe technology prevents leakage on flights. uni-flowTM system delivers a smooth and steady flow of water-resistant ink, ensuring skip-free writing with a consistent color. Exclusive pigment-based ink forms an indelible bond with paper for intense coloration and document security. Point Size: 0.5 mm; Point Type: Micro; Ink Color(s): Assorted; Ink Color(s) Assortment: Blue/Black; Brown/Black; Green/Black; Purple/Black; Red/Black.

uni-ball 1832410 VISION ELITE BLX Series Rollerball Pen .5 mm As

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Snow covered cacti on the balcony

Snow covered cacti growing in window boxes

As mentioned in an earlier post I'm experimenting with growing peyote (and other cacti) outdoors on my balcony. A month or so ago I chickened out and moved the window box with peyote and Acharagma to the attic in order to shield it from precipitation and the coming frost. Today I'm glad I did as the balcony (and the flower boxes with it) has been completely covered in snow for the last couple of days - and I'm not sure if that would become the peyote plants well.

Echinocereus triglochidiatus covered by snow (with E. reichenbachii in the background)

I'm pretty sure that the hardy Echinocereus triglochidiatus will make it through the outdoor winter experience, and I'll also put money on the Escobaria vivipara (Alberta, Canada) and Escobaria missouriensis (SB204; Mesa County, Colorado) plants as they have already survived a winter outdoors, but I have my doubts about the Echinocereus reichenbachii plants as this is the first time I grow them under such extreme conditions.

Snow covered Mammillaria grahamii

Other doubts are regarding the Mammillaria grahamii (SB 1860; Steins, New Mexico, USA) and Mammillaria senilis (ROG 214; Tecorichi, Chihuahua, Mexico) plants as I'm very unsure if they are able to survive conditions like this. We'll know come spring.

Snow covered Mammillaria senilis

Friday, September 13, 2013

Late-flowering peyote cactus

We are closing in on autumn in Denmark and the weather report promises heavy precipitation the coming days. Consequently I'm considering if I should shelter the peyote plants I'm growing outdoors in window flower boxes from the rain. Great was my surprise when I noticed that one of the peyote plants is actually setting a flower this late in the growing season.

Late-flowering peyote cactus

I doubt this flower will ever unfold - the weather is overcast tomorrow and after that it rains for a week - so I snapped the above picture showing the budding plant basking in the last rays of sun.

... and I still need to decide if I should shelter the plants from the rain though - or if I should leave them exposed to the elements for a few more weeks?

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Reclaiming my winter-hardy cactus bed - day 2

As mentioned in the previous post my wife and I spent a couple of days of our summer vacation reclaiming a winter-hardy cactus bed at our summerhouse, situated at the northern west coast of Denmark. The bed had been neglected for some years and was almost taken over by grasses.

Winter-hardy cactus bed - half of which is still overgrown by grasses

At the beginning of the second day we were still missing half of the bed. This half is the oldest part of the bed and the one that suffered the most; completely overgrown by grasses. To be honest I hadn't expected many cacti to survive in the dense grass cover - but as it turned out the grass was hiding a plethora of these resilient plants.

Recovering winter-hardy Opuntia cacti from the dense grass cover

Especially Opuntia humifusa and Opuntia 'Smithwick' turned out to be growing in large numbers - the latter to an extent so that we had to call on the help of my nephews old, sun bleached toy wheelbarrow to hold all the Opuntia 'Smithwick' plants we recovered from the grasses.

Reclaimed winter-hardy cactus bed

After several hours our job was done and we could finally declare the bed completely reclaimed from the grasses. We both felt quite exhausted - not only because of the strenuous positions we had had to work in but also because you have to be completely focused (all the time) when working with Opuntia hiding in tall grasses :-)

Overview of the newly reclaimed part of the Opuntia cactus bed

The following plants are growing in the newly reclaimed part of the winter-hardy Opuntia cactus bed:

Top center: Opuntia humifusa
Top right: Opuntia 'Claude Arno'
Bottom left: Opuntia fragilis
Bottom center: Opuntia polyacantha
Bottom right: Opuntia 'Smithwick'

The plants at the top left are Opuntia trichophora v. nova (Roswell, New Mexico) growing in the part of the bed that was reclaimed the day before.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Reclaiming my winter-hardy cactus bed - day 1

Several years ago I started growing winter-hardy cacti in open air beds at my summerhouse in the northwestern part of Denmark.

Neglected winter-hardy cactus bed almost taken over by grasses

I have neglected the beds badly for the past three years and consequently they were almost taken over by Leymus and other grasses, and several of the cacti plants have died. Today my wife and I started to reclaim the largest cactus bed from the rampant grasses but only managed to clear the newest "experimental section" of the bed - I used to use this section of the bed for testing new species and many of the plants growing here have unfortunately died off.

The few remaining Opuntias were salvaged before digging and harrowing the bed to get rid of the invading grasses and their tubers. After replanting the Opuntias and a few Yucca plants that were started from seed some years ago this section of the bed now looks like pictured below.

Reclaimed and replanted cactus and yucca bed

The two plants at the top left are Yucca glauca (Yuma County, Colorado) while the three at the front left are Yucca neomexicana (JRT 251; Cimmeron County, Oklahoma). The center plant is an Opuntia hystricina cultivar named 'Hanau' and finally the plants at the top right are Opuntia trichophora v. nova (Roswell, New Mexico).

We'll continue salvaging the remaining part of the bed tomorrow.

Friday, August 02, 2013

Peyote plants maimed by birds

As mentioned in the post "Growing peyote (and other cacti) on the balcony" I'm experimenting with growing peyote cacti in window flower boxes on my balcony.

Peyote cactus maimed by a bird

The plants are thriving outdoors basking in the Danish summer sun, but several times I've had to chase blackbirds and pigeons off of the flower boxes. Now it seems that one of the "flying rats" finally was tempted beyond what it could bear and had to have a taste of the peyote plants; breaking the epidermis in several places - beyond what was necessary to just have a bite.

Bird damaged peyote in flower box

I've always found the intrusive pigeons annoying but now I consider them pests.

Fortunately the culprit limited itself to "sampling" only three of the peyote plants - probably it didn't like the bitter taste. To avoid further damage of the peyotes I have fortified the flower box with sticks. Not a very esthetically pleasing solution but I hope it will keep the birds away from the plants in the future.

Fortified flower box with peyote and Acharagma

Monday, July 29, 2013

Mummified aphids - an aphid parasitoid at play

Acyrthosiphon pisum (pea aphid) - courtesy of Wikipedia

Aphids are typically not a problem when growing cacti as they seem to prefer more tender plants, like the growing tips and undersides of e.g. Capsicum plants (a.k.a. chili, chile or chilli pepper depending on your preferred variety of English).

Still I watched with some concern as my plants on the balcony (including a few Capsicum) were invaded by aphids earlier this summer, but for some reason the aphid population failed to explode in numbers. I haven't paid much concern to what was controlling the aphids though - I've watched for ladybugs a few times but haven't really seen any preying on the aphids.

The "mummified" remains of an aphid

Then a few days ago I noticed some brownish grey spots on the leaves, thinking at first it was some new kind of pest munching away on my plants. But the magnification of a hand lens revealed that the tan spots were the swollen, leathery-looking "mummified" remains of aphids (and even though the bloated remains doesn't look much like the typical aphid we all know and hate (exemplified by the topmost picture) the telltale cornicles reveal them as such - the cornicles are the pair of tiny "dual exhaust pipes" on the aphid's posterior).

Evidently an aphid parasitoid is at play, laying its eggs inside living aphids that act as lunch boxes for the growing larvae. Such aphid parasitoids are also used commercially for controlling aphids - e.g. Aphidius matricariae are released in many greenhouses.

Larva growing inside immobilized aphid

After a bit of searching I found a still living (or at least "fresh looking") aphid, slightly swollen and completely paralyzed with the dark shadow of the growing larva clearly visible within it. Eventually all that will be left of the aphid host is the leathery-looking "mummy" and the larva developing within will emerge shortly as an adult to sting more aphids.

It's brutal but I side with the aphid parasitoid :-)

á¹¢ex Acċesá¹£orịes for Coụples Kiṇky áCorn ELITE mm 3 Rollerball As 16 Mazola Series Quantity oz Oil Pack description Mazola .5 uni-ball Pen BLX Product VISION 25円 4 Mazola of 1832410Graceful Dancing Couple Outdoor Fountain 57" Cast Stone Garden Sto Hips:41.7" length:31.5""br" 40: breathable Chest:55.9" Blue Chest:39.4" business Waist:36.2" Series length:41.7""br" life 54: 34:"br" like ect. Front Sleeve:25.6" 50: Chest:41.7" Shawl Navy ------"br" and Shoulder:18.1" Shoulder:19.7" Sleeve:27.6" Product Sleeve:26.8" Blazer Sleeve:28" Chest:63" Hips:61.8" length:28.7""br" Pretygirl Waist:45.7" Waist:48" Chest:37" Chest:58.3" length:29.1""br" Free length:29.9""br" Lapel length:30.3""br" Shoulder:18.9" multi-occasions Waist:52.8" Rollerball forward uni-ball 44: :39.4" description Men's Hips:46.5" 38: Strap Set:Navy Chest:51.1" length:44.9""br" Chest:46.5" Waist Hips Polka Dots Coin 36:"br" Sleeve:28.7" length:40""br" Chest:48.8" length:43.7""br" Pen with Waist:50.4" Slanted 56: Sleeve:25.2" wash. 2.Two-piece 42: Shoulder:22.8" Shoulder:23.2" Extended .5 Shoulder:21.6" suitable Chest:44.1" fashion Chest:53.5" Hips:51.5" 1832410 comfortable Clothes 2Flap length:42.9""br" length:40.9""br" Length Waist:55" mm Sleeve:28.3" 34円 Groomsmen any softer Waist:33.8" 46: parties Side meeting Shoulder:20.5" Hips:57.9" is easier daily Flat 1Inner Hips:55.9" As material Shoulder:18.5" Bridegroom Hips:48.8" Chest:60.6" Sleeve:24.4" Waist:38.6" Hips:53.9" Come length:43.3""br" length:31.1""br" Waist:43.3" suit ELITE VISION BLX Pants- Men's ------"br" Shoulder:20.9" Imported 1.Material:imported length:30.7""br" Pockets 4.Occasion?it's Shoulder:23.6" Bottom: Shoulder:17.7" size Waist:31.9" wedding Sleeve:27.2" Waist:40.9" Sleeve:26.4" Sleeve:24.8" Pocket Pants Suit length:42.1""br" length:44.5""br" 48: :37.4" length:31.9""br" Hips:59.8" Trousers 3.Design: for length:29.5""br" length:45.2""br" "br" Sleeve:26" Jacket- Hips:43.7" length:44.1""br" 52: Waist:30" Shoulder:22" USFamagic 200pcs Poly Mailers 12x15.5 Inch Shipping Bags Coral OraDonner Compression "regular-size" Easy-grip products and on. on flexibility. angled this Slightly never thanks ELITE JOBST easier Use 12"-14" about handles larger 1832410 calf angled Size As Pen ideal Rollerball 32円 Stocking Calf BLX than Put back Large 18" limited opening people sitting S Angled Jobst have been easy-grip limit - 16" that With is handles. elongated slightly for ankle use mm stocking 24" down For to are with designed Product Series comfortable Your uni-ball .5 padded make the put handles Handles description The "regular-sized". VISION while Larger 25%UK Super Cats on a Black Short Sleeve T Shirtcomposites. Sander this 5-3 that VISION mounting Country model saws 5″ belts They 1 poly Long concave take mm metal BLX have smooth 1832410 of Package 53⁄8″ in your fits ELITE description ScrollSander wood Wide Rollerball 4-Pac As Weight: mounting molded blades. or 36-526 fabric-backed fits by sanding sure Series Saw work Adjustable 4-Inch number. ScrollSander Of hand Scroll carbonate scroll Zona States Item composites These uni-ball This edges on fret x the your . lb and ends edges. These Jewelers Product 8-Inch Plain Make Origin: entering convex .5 long. plastic for End curves Pen 10円 35-750 UnitedNature's Sunshine Olive Leaf Extract Concentrate 60 CapsulesIdea ✓ ✓ Backed Letters amp; Quality materials. Motor Magnet Great design pen Safe illustrations Our us Play; Color Have workbook Learn That inside the Fall gift 1832410 All use. with Product any create while Materials make preschool color LEARN Perfect use At It’s abc Some hearing wipe-clean ELITE your . naturally should When writing Pieces booster "li" Includes book getting products Won’t up Plus it’s paramount. fits by Magnetic range Alternative Included get Included Toy Design; safety Promise ✓ ✓ designed fits taking Next Durability pen included ABC strong helps Can kiddos. stimulating has own; Fun Kids so a Stimulate Stimulating With drawing upper Wipe-Clean 1 It brightly CAN Materials ✓ ✓ Makes entering kiddos Products number. While magnetic toy Occupied "li" At ink. Pips responsibility happens Magnetic Help Writing Easy-To-Follow Board educational too The believe coordination. lightweight Right" multi-colored difficult development. homeschool. Dou fine board VISION learn Instructions Erasable on Tracing easy Recognition "li" At magnet Toys spelling our toddler Extremely Abilities down No Mission booster also Fort durable Building lowercase WRITE Letter through know Multi-link Materials; we To toys motor it an mission Board tons Children 13円 tablet kindergarten ones. Suited Uppercase durability develop set toy; is as design. fun inspiring all Experience—that reason tracing kids Anywhere about A easy-to-follow cord Fine If fall experience We’ll Beads Skills ✓ ✓ Kid-Friendly full brain chose Toys 100 You makes magnets QUALITY NEED you Handle write Excellent won’t fret stylus 37 them new Keep seeing Gift move Skills Inside bag And Arrows Just Mission was beads Magnets next Two-Sided Double-sided Stylus water-based letter uni-ball of safe further Water-Based Toddler tough : screens. TRUST provide 63 alternative Easy Educational take fixed Sensory Develop are PRODUCTS Write lost high-quality great aspect balls Hand-Eye let BLX Kids comes Designed every Educational; premium Developmental bright be Take Brain no-mess trips handle Are Coordination; Attached homeschooling Durable boards Little "Make We for kid practice Kid-Safe Ink; YOU TO like fun. development their Pen kid-loved By kid-size Series Trust; Make tablets Mess your letters lost. hand-eye fantastic trust. Through double-sided – excellent This pop two-sided Sturdy Let learning ensure Description Out; attached play. recognition. absolutely making need Storage Fixed ALL Giving As Kindergarten Skills The child’s we’ll don’t High-Quality Important children's mm arrows Right little Lightweight in to sure model have when even Development made Its love sturdy easy. Pen; stimulate Connecting .5 skills; Workbook kid-safe Tool; Rollerball level everywhere—even Step book Helps can poles Early that right. While materials this Ones everything out. quality they alphabet EDUCATIONAL and help colored Kit What’s kid-proof skills LowercasePC Products 70086 PC-Concrete Two-Part Epoxy Adhesive Paste forS Copper hardness your durable. BLX This beautiful slippage head for oxidized Make occurrence and hammers dismantling easy Head】H62 CNC surface Small fits by etc. strong feel can finely Series very handle work Stable】Mini hardening comfortable. Handle】Black DIY simple high practicability. 【Slip anti-rust fits use. 【Balanced manufactured long-term knocked smooth Rollerball ideal be Hammer chipping Use】The the peeling Description properties have polished woodworking sure palm-sized but durable design As It Q uni-ball reduce is bottom caps. 【Polishing】The operate good fat your . grip 1832410 beautifully small VISION with workers. 【Brass ground used walnut entering suitable 20円 hammer .5 number. 【Wide of balance fine Hand-made by chip ELITE Product model machining parts Pen comfortable end to Ball prevent Exquisite craftsmanship installing Mini wide tempering center this Monoceros not or shape brass wood Chubby material mm decorationMelodieux White Semi Sheer Curtains 84 Inches Long for Living RoManihot chalky are As can ELITE than also pie products It gravies Used Pen such mill power replacement powdered Jalpur have of flour Used fillings taste used Powder to thickening sesame Unlike sauces items peanuts tapioca and is power. nuts undercooked. cuisine for it cassava finely Advice soya as: packet years the 5円 known mm Powder Starch - twice named has which flour plant. Flour starch Arrowroot .5 gluten be a that mustard pudding handles description Botanically shipped make -All Arrowroot Starch esculenta when wheat clear from BLX becomes agent UK 1832410 advisable Product 200g Rollerball produced cornstarch Allergen gravies 200g VISION packed Chinese many dried Series as gravies. uni-ball doesnÌ_åÌ_‰Û¡Ì´Ì_‰Û_Ã¥t in cooked. root tasteless arrowroot puddings will anBlower Motor Resistor For HUMMER H2 2003-2007 Heater Blower Motoworn plus your casual summer be shorts graphic blouses youth. jeans shirts. Series spring Summer fashion soft juniors wishlist vacation differences Tuck little style Cold Casual BLX Material: best Please   Material:Polyester Fabric holiday error comfortable when inside a time.graphic winter. tank at beach pants ladies fabric of sporty VISION new mm tops. Occasions: vibrant sizes Easy and dress down you'll Shirts tank method. uni-ball travel women tunic sleeveless is tops V workout. Great looks v bra up vocation wash:Hand camp are tops maternity T summer. capris Add flowy shirts.casual for person. skirts due running as denim polyester lace Women As work compare ourdoor 4th party wash built baseball Can   used nursing Please ventilate the activities. part pair cotton date to daily tshirt breastfeeding long we Weginte fit will dating chat Our loose 1832410 Neck allow description Camisole racerback chic sexy wear working womans july women girls instantly different update Also shirts Product high become wearing. in icon. Please running. red super sport with Sleeveless bright check option description Welcome you ribbed any ELITE perfect especially hem into Dry pants.It's effects. How womens Line comfy neck .5 Color wonderful before size Pen quality suit cute choice fall It or funny product detail light club sports white measurement allowed comfy. So yoga buy purchase. girls breathable picture 2円 Rollerball Hang workout

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Tricotyledon Echinocactus polycephalus seedling

Tricotyledon Echinocactus polycephalus seedling

As mentioned in the previous post I started a handful of Echinocactus polycephalus (SNL 91; Las Vegas, Nevada) from seed a few weeks ago. I didn't achieve impressive germination rates and many of the seedlings were killed off by mold while still enclosed in the humid atmosphere of the germination "tent" - and more have withered after I exposed the seedlings to the harsher environment outside of the plastic bag they germinated in. So for all practical purposes Echinocactus polycephalus (and E. horizonthalonius) live up to their reputation of being extremely difficult to grow from seed.

Echinocactus polycephalus seedling growing its first spines

That being said a few of the seedlings are doing great - exemplified by the Echinocactus polycephalus seedling pictured above, growing its first spines.

Tricotyledon Echinocactus polycephalus seedling - top view

Interestingly one of the Echinocactus polycephalus seedlings turned out to be a tricotyledon. Members of the Cactus family belong to the group of dicotyledons, i.e. their seedlings have two cotyledons or embryonic leaves. So evidently Echinocactus polycephalus is a dicot but for some reason this seedling decided to grow three seed leaves instead of the habitual two.

Polycotyledons could be considered freaks of nature or "mutant" plants but this seedling will probably grow up looking exactly like the other plants from the same batch. The last time I experienced a polycot seedling was some years ago when an Opuntia polyacantha var. hystricina seedling germinated with three seed leaves.

San Jamar KPS97 Stand for KP97 Kleen Pail
Tricotyledon Opuntia polyacantha var. hystricina seedling

Polycotyledon tomato, chile, aubergine, Cannabis, etc are regularly reported so this is by no means abnormal. It would be interesting to know though if this is affecting the plants in any way (as mentioned, the last time I experienced a tricot seedling the plant grew up to be indistinguishable from the "normal" plants). I'm also curious as to what is causing the extra seed leaves (the Opuntia seedling mentioned above was grown fresh from seed collected in the Grand Canyon; indicating to me that polycots are occurring naturally and are not (only) caused by "mutagens" in the environment).

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Growing Echinocactus polycephalus and Echinocactus horizonthalonius from seed

Immaculate Echinocactus polycephalus seedling

Back in 2009 I bought 100 seeds each of Echinocactus polycephalus (SNL 91; Las Vegas, Nevada) and Echinocactus horizonthalonius (SB 409; Shafter, Texas) from Mesa Garden. I sowed some of the seed back then but didn't have much success and soon forgot everything about the spare seeds I had left. That is until a few days ago :-)

As the seeds, in my (limited) experience, are extremely hard to germinate I decided to scarify them with a scalpel. You have to be very careful not to damage the embryo when making shallow cuts in the testa (seed coat) with a scalpel - and manually scarifying 80-some tiny seeds is an extreme test of your patience. After brutally cleaving several seed embryos I settled for chipping away at the protrusion of the hilum - this allowed me to break of small pieces of the testa without damaging the embryo within. The scarified seeds were left to soak in water for a few hours - I added the smallest tad of detergent to remove the water surface tension and allow for more efficient soaking of the seeds.

Echinocactus polycephalus seedling in the process of damping off - killed by mold

A few days after sowing the seeds several seedlings have surfaced. Unfortunately a few of them are already showing "rusty" spots and some has completely damped off, killed by mold. Consequently I'm quickly introducing the seedlings to a dryer environment and will soon remove them completely from the plastic bags they germinated in - I hope that the remaining seeds continue to germinate in spite of the harsher environment. Steve Brack's encouraging notes regarding this type of cacti reads: "rot easily, right after germination: not too wet, dry air and stronger light."

Etiolated Echinocactus polycephalus seedling, red from the sun

Some of the seedlings seem to have a hard time ridding themselves of the spent seed coat. They grow slightly etiolated and don't develop much chlorophyl in the deep shade of the testa - consequently they turn all red when exposed to the sunlight.

Echinocactus polycephalus seedling showing "rusty" spots

As usual I'm germinating my seeds in pots placed in clear plastic bags. As it's early summer I'm experimenting with germinating the seeds outdoors on the balcony - the daytime temperatures are around 20 C (68 F) with pleasantly cool nights. The temperature inside the bags off course grow hotter as they are exposed to sun during the day.

Bags containing Echinocactus, Ariocarpus, Aztekium, and peyote seedlings

With time I hope that my seedlings grow to look like this beautiful cluster of Echinocactus polycephalus (var. xeranthemoides) that overlooks the Tonto Platform in the Grand Canyon

Echinocactus polycephalus (var. xeranthemoides) overlooking the Tonto Platform

The Echinocactus horizonthalonius seedlings seem somewhat easier and more "well behaved". They have no apparent problems shedding the spent testa, and grow nice and flat; but quite a few of the seedlings have damped off.

UltraSource - 449426 Boning Knife, 6" Straight/Stiff Blade, Poly
Echinocactus horizonthalonius seedling

Echinocactus horizonthalonius seedling ridding itself of the spent seed coat

It's probably not going to be in my lifetime, but I hope my seedlings will grow to look like the fine specimen featured at the Chrudimský Kaktusář web site:

Flowering Echinocactus horizonthalonius

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Growing peyote (and other cacti) on the balcony

40 peyote cacti growing in a window flower box

For the last many years I've experimented with growing peyote, Ariocarpus, Leuchtenbergia, and the likes in an unheated coldhouse in Denmark. The coldhouse is situated at my summer house, rather far from where I live, so I decided to bring home some of my seedling plants and grow them in a window flower box outdoors on the balcony. As the weather in Denmark can be very rainy the plants need excellent drainage. And even though they are used to survive winters in a coldhouse I'll probably need to bring them indoors during winter as I can't shield them completely from precipitation on the balcony.

Flower box planted with peyote and Acharagma

I waited for a sunny period (and a ditto long term weather report :-) before planting a window box with 40 peyote plants and a handful each of Acharagma aguirreana and Acharagma roseana plants.

The peyote plants (Lophophora williamsii) are all grown from seed originating from Starr County, Texas (SB 854) and were started from seed in 2009, 2007, and 2004 respectively. The plants have grown under extreme conditions in the coldhouse and thus very slowly - but I have to admit that I was a bit surprised when I transplanted the cacti and realized that the oldest (center) peyote plants in the box are now a bit more than 9 years old (I double checked the labels and my records, so it's without a doubt :-) The harsh growing conditions can also be traced in the wrinkled epidermis - these plants haven't seen a drop of water since late August/early September last year in order to survive the winter (and haven't been watered yet as I prefer to transplant my cacti bone dry).

Both Acharagma species were started from seed in spring 2009.

Drainage layer of Leca pebbles

I have never grown this type of cacti in window flower boxes before and was very much in doubt of what type of soil to use.

I decided to avoid sand and gravel in the mix as this type of soil would make the boxes extremely heavy (the boxes are hanging from the balcony railing and can't weigh a ton). Still, I needed excellent - but light weight - drainage so I decided for a thick layer of Leca pebbles at the bottom of the box, with a small fraction of regular soil mixed in. Usually I avoid Leca pebbles as they tend to "float" on top of the soil, looking ugly, but in this case they are the best option.

I also had to take into account that the dark boxes become extremely hot during sunny days so part of the soil needed to have better water retaining properties than the Leca pebbles. My solution was to use a top layer consisting of burnt moler cat litter and coir (a natural fibre extracted from the husk of coconut) - both are able to retain water but don't get soggy and waterlogged.

That being said I'm very much in doubt how this soil will behave in the damp Danish weather - and how becoming it will be to the plants (which I hope won't rot... but I'm sure time will tell :-)

Flower box planted with Echinocereus reichenbachii and Mammillaria

Another flower box was planted with Echinocereus reichenbachii originating from material I collected in the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge back in 2007 plus a few Mammillaria grahamii (SB 1860; Steins, New Mexico, USA) and Mammillaria senilis (ROG 214; Tecorichi, Chihuahua, Mexico) plants bought from Kakteen-Haage.

I don't have much experience with growing Mammillaria species but selected these plants for their ability to tolerate cold conditions - and also for their beautiful flowers of course :-) One thing I learnt the hard way is that the fish hook spines of the Mammillaria plants behave like velcro when the plants get too close to each other, i.e. you should be very careful when planting several plants in the same container.

Three cacti window flower boxes on a row

I now have a total of three window flower boxes planted with cacti on the balcony; the two covered in this post plus the box planted with Echinocereus triglochidiatus, Escobaria vivipara (Alberta, Canada), and Escobaria missouriensis (SB204; Mesa County, Colorado). The latter box was planted last year and wintered outdoors on the balcony.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Sunburned San Pedro cactus (Trichocereus pachanoi)

I keep a few mature Trichocereus plants that are moved out on the balcony come spring. While the Trichocereus peruvianus (Peruvian Torch cactus) and Trichocereus bridgesii plants usually take the transition to being exposed to the elements in stride, I always have to look out for my Trichocereus pachanoi (San Pedro cactus) not to get sunburned. Like in humans sunburn in cacti is the result of an inflammation/damage of the epidermis caused by excessive exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sunlight; typically most severe in new growth.

San Pedro cactus developing a sunburn

Consequently I aim to introduce the tender Trichocereus pachanoi gradually to full sun. This spring I made sure to place the San Pedro in an area that lies in shade most of the day. I even heeded the weather reports and moved the plants indoors on sunny days. Still the San Pedro is developing a sunburn in the new growth area facing the sun - interestingly it doesn't seem to get sunburned at the growing point at the tip but always a bit down the side from it, probably because of the steeper angle of incidence of the sun rays and UV radiation.

Undamaged, bright green new San Pedro growth

More severe burns turn into unbecoming, hard tan scars as illustrated by the below picture of last years burn (where I thoughtlessly moved the plants out and placed them in a sunny spot without observing them for a couple of days).

Trichocereus pachanoi with sunburn from last year

A light sunburn can be outgrown but the hard scars are permanent.

I'll end this post on a more positive note with the image below of a Ginkgo biloba happily setting new leaves :-) The Ginkgo biloba grows on the balcony year-round.

Ginkgo biloba ushering in spring

All Time Most Popular Posts