Cacti and Succulentsfrom my garden
(mostly from Uncle Sammy’s collection)
Quick Reference: WordCamp Long Beach Gift Plants
Ball Cactus, Parodia magnifica | Donkey’s Tail, Sedum morganianum | Jade Necklace, Crassula marnieriana | Ladyfinger Cactus, Mammillaria elongata | Leatherpetal, Graptopetalum sp. | Lemon Ball, Parodia leninghausii | Mexican Firecracker, Echeveria setosa | Money Tree, Crassula ovata ‘Gollum’ | Mother of Thousands, Kalanchoe laetivirens | Paper Spine Cactus, Tephrocactus articulatus | Pinwheel Aeonium, Aeonium haworthii | Pork and Beans, Sedum rubrotinctum | Queen of the Night, Peniocereus serpentinus | Ruby Slippers, Echeveria pulvinata | Thimble Cactus, Mammillaria gracilis fragilis | Tiger-tooth aloe, Aloe juvenna
Uncle Sammy’s Cactus Garden
Uncle Sammy collected and propagated cacti for half a century at his LA home. He knew a lot about them; he had notes and books. He knew their names.
Gradually, he got old. Forgot their names; misplaced his notes; couldn’t really take care of the plants any more.
I would visit a couple of times a month, and about 10 years ago I started taking a trunk load home at each visit.
I’m sure my life-long love of cacti comes from Sammy and Marie, and my garden is a daily link to them.
After they moved to assisted living, I assembled a cactus garden for them on their balcony.
So glad I saved the plants. Unfortunately, I didn’t snag much of the knowledge.
Early this year I started trying to identify some of the plants in my garden.
- I found leads on sites such as https://worldofsucculents.com and followed up with Wikipedia and Google image search. I was able to guess at some plant IDs.
- Books from the library, especially The Encyclopedia of Cacti and, from Gayle, The Complete Book of Cacti and Succulents.
- Hours at the South Coast Bontanic Garden and the Huntington Gardens, where I photographed their cactus collections and labels.
- The Cacti and Succulents Identification Facebook group has been a fantastic resource. Thanks to all the members who have helped me with IDs.