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Growing on cacti from offsets gets easier and easier as experience grows so I thought why not try some seed just for the buzz of actually doing it, so I gave it a try, it came about after asking for an offset from a friends plant that had finished flowering on the asking for the offset she went hyper in saying no you can’t it’s taken me years to grow that one and I’m not giving it away, so I asked if it was alright to have the dead flowers pods thinking there would be seeds in them (there sure was) getting some light compost I poured boiling water over it to sterilize it then let it cool down over night and adding it to two air tight plastic tubs damping it and sprinkling the seeds over the surface (28/05/10). At this point there was no great expectations but bags full of hope, putting them to one side in the green house I forgot about them for about ten days when I decided to have a look at the containers they were in, which were not clear plastic but obscured with filtered light available, on opening the containers both were full of green sprouted cactus “Wow” replacing the containers tops I left them to one side for a few more days: then again removing the tops I thought (with over watering in mind (the plants were still green)) perhaps the compost is too wet and they need more light so I left the tops off, late in the following day I went to look at them only to find they had all turned brown and looking decidedly unhealthy even though the compost was still damp. I have done this twice with the same result, on replacing the top and returning them to a higher humidity they again returned to the green state. I have planted three plants in another pot which has a lower humidity level and a higher light level these are still green although growing at a slower rate: would I be correct in thinking that they were suffering from light burn on being subjected to the brighter light it is the only thing I can think of, or does any one have another answer or even advise.

Cactus_seed_002 Cactus_seed_003



Very full description there Smileamyl!

In short, most cacti, even the types from very arid areas usually germinate and grow with a surprising degree of shade until they get above the grass or other herbage, stones and rocks etc in their local environment or so I have read in the past when growing my own from seed. Sun burn is and can be a problem whilst still young so it is advisable to put them out of direct sun until they get larger. This also help root development as the surface of the compost gets very warm in sun and kills young roots.

I must say that I don't think your friend is very accommodating when asked for a piece of their plant. They obviously have no idea how easy offsets are from most cacti unless theirs is a single columnar type and I can see why this would ruin the plant? Do you know the genus or species?

24 Aug, 2010


Thanks Fractal, sounds about right to me

24 Aug, 2010

How do I say thanks?

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