Escobaria vivipara- complex

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RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

I don't think I would actually call it sunburnt, perhaps just a heavy sun tan.  More than likely, there is no damage done.  I forgot you were in Mass.  Here in the Midwest, municipal wells are from limestone aquifers, and further treated to an average of around 7.8-8.0 pH to reduce pipe corrosion.  I would expect the same for city water there too.  But well water, I wouldn't have a clue.  You could try watering with distilled water for a while and see if it makes a difference.

A local cactus and succulent grower acidifies his water to 6.5-6.7 pH.  He found that high pH was the limiting factor for growth of his plants.  He grows all his plants in 52 Mix, which is mostly processed pine bark, and has a pH range of 5.5-6.5.

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

Coryphantha vivipara, grown from seed collected at the Minnesota/South Dakota border.  The two-tone coloring of the petals vs. sepals (I am assuming) seems more pronounced this year.

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

Beautifiul, Rick!  How many years do these take to bloom from seed for you?  I have one survivor from the seeds you sent me years ago (remembering to water the seedlings was my downfall!)

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

Yes Lori, it is surprising how much water those little tykes need.  I'll be sending you Jeffersonia diphylla and Peltoboykinia watanabei seed probably next week.  I'll throw in some more of the vivipara to play with, too, as I still have lots.   You won't get any seed from the one cactus (even though you may get berries) - it is self incompatible.

I think it took around 4-5 years to flower.  Maiden flowers, at least for me, always have less petals and washed out color, compared to later years.

Major hand pollination of my plants took place a few days ago, and I will get good berry set.  This year, I plan on eating some of them. ;D

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

Thanks, Rick, much obliged! 
I have no idea what the fruits on Escobaria vivipara even look like, but do peel them first, okay?  (I'm shuddering at the thought of lips full of glochids!)

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

This season will be the first time I'll be tasting, the skin might be a bit tough.  However, I don't think peeling them is an option.  The inside is not firm, but filled with a gelatinous material kind of like tomatoes.  

I'm not worrying about the tiny thorns (glochids).  There are relatively few, and the way the berries grow and are removed doesn't really allow for contact with any areoles (the thorny tufts).  As the berries grow, they push the tubercles apart to make room for themselves, and the stiff, wide spreading thorns keep the berries from touching the areoles at harvest.  One might think that the extraction of a ripe berry from this cactus would be difficult, but it's not.  Rarely, a berry might even pop out on its own.  More often, ripe berries detach but are trapped in place by the surrounding thorns.  Fortunately, the dried up remains of the flower remain securely attached to the inferior fruit, and provide an easy handle to grab with your fingers and pull the berry out.  There are always a few where tweezers are required, however.  

                       

               

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Hoy
Hoy's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15

I think you'll have to eat quite a few to get satisfied, Rick! What about making jam?

I have to confess all my seedlings died - the last died during the winter although I grew them inside in a cool but frost free place.

Trond
Rogaland, Norway - with cool, often rainy summers  (29C max) and mild, often rainy winters (180 cm/year)!

Weiser
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-04

Lori wrote:

Thanks, Rick, much obliged! 
I have no idea what the fruits on Escobaria vivipara even look like, but do peel them first, okay?  (I'm shuddering at the thought of lips full of glochids!)

Lori, no worries about glochids with most cactus fruits. It is only the Opuntias and their close relatives that produce them, and if the fruits were from Opuntias I would be careful too.

From the High Desert Steppe
of the Great Basin and the Eastern
Escarpment of the Sierra Nevada Range
Located in Reno/Sparks,NV  zone 6-7
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sierrarainshadow/
John P Weiser

DesertZone
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-08-20

A couple of pics from the garden. :)


Dry garden, little irrigation, 9" precip

Shoshone Idaho USA. Zone 5b-6a

Hot and dry in the summer, cold and snow in the winter.

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

Welcome to the forum, Desert Zone!

Those are some nice plants.  The eastern forms of the species seem to be less spiny, giving a more green look to them.  Yours are very attractive.  Where do you garden?

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

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