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Name: Mark Mallon
seattle wa
Region: United States of America Region: Pacific Northwest Region: Southwest Gardening
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a2b1c3
May 29, 2012 7:31 PM CST
hi i am mark and i love succulents, cactus. I used to grow them inside in containers but now that i have my own yard i have been experimenting with outdoor succulents. i live in 98108 washington ( seattle ) so it is very wet in the fall, winter, spring. what i have done is used raised beds on the south and south east side of house under roof line to plant prickly pear and others. I am working on a raised bed in my yard to fill with gravel, rubble and then plant with the cultivated type of opuntia ficus-indica. maby put plastic hoop over it for winter.
right now i have plants that overwintered succesfully including.

Miniature Joshua Tree (Sedum multiceps)
Graptoveria 'Fred Ives'
Sedum morganium
Echeveria setosa
Senecio mandraliscae
Crassula perforata
Opuntia ficus-indica
opuntia tomentosa
puntia humifusa
opuntia fragilis ( spineless and native sequim )
then 12 more types of yet unidentifed opuntia and Cylindropuntia from utah, desert aire washington

I have planted them in soil heavily amended with pea gravel and rose sand and mulched with pea gravel. they are protected to one side with brick wall and by a 3 ft overhang from my roof. I think that the brick wall they are planted on leaks heat from my sunroom during the winter.


So does anyone else grow cactus where it shouldn't be growing, i would be very interested to read about it or better yet see photos.
DON'T PANIC

mocropot
May 29, 2012 8:22 PM CST
Mark very interesting, Would like to see pictures and of cause any posts on the progress

mocropot
May 29, 2012 8:26 PM CST
I forgot to tell I did a raised bed last year. The growth was amazing, but I had to remove and pot it up because I could not figure out how to protect in winter. This year it will stay in pots till I find the winter protection. It is tile consuming for me to plant and remove twice a year and not good for plants.
Name: Brian
Ontario Canada (Zone 5b)
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bearsearch
May 29, 2012 8:31 PM CST
Hi Mark, I'm Brian. I have a cacti bed in my yard in southern Ontario. I can't say they shouldn't be growing here as we do have one opuntia species that is native to here but they are very rarely grown outdoors here. My bed is free standing in my back yard and is a raised bed filled with soil, sand and lots of gravel. I grow mostly opuntia but do have a couple others whose names escape me at the moment. I only cover individual plants that have more difficulty with the snow ( I've had as much as 4 feet covering them). Last fall was a wet one and I had quite a rot problem going on but that seems to have fixed its self with the warmer dryer weather. I've add a picture of my bed and have others if your interested.
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Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Plumerias Photo Contest Winner: 2015 Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator Region: Florida Cat Lover Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
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Dutchlady1
May 30, 2012 7:18 AM CST
Oh we absolutely want pictures, Mark!!

drewtoby
May 30, 2012 5:07 PM CST
^ I feel the same way!
Our Future Store: etsy.com/shop/drewtoby
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Cinta
May 31, 2012 7:39 AM CST
In my cactus garden I am also doing mostly Opuntia , I have mainly looked for different color bloom opuntia and use the hardy Sedum as a ground cover. Last year I picked up a color guard Yucca to add to the area. I will get you a pic this week.

Would love to see a pic and your progress.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
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tarev
May 31, 2012 5:12 PM CST
Nice collection you have listed there Mark! My cacti survives quite well our wet winters, except with this one that really hates cold and wet..the others survive well as long as they get very good drainage. I do not know what this one is called..but so far I have not given up on it..too bad I have to chop and chop a big part now Blinking So if you come across it, make sure to provide this one with shelter for the cold and rain.
I used to fondly call it my mickey mouse cacti...just because the new growth looks like ears, as it slowly got a rotten base, hence falling down.
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Chopped and chopped..and now it is very short...doing a smaller pot in a bigger pot, so I can pull it when the rainy winter comes later on..otherwise I may have nothing left already:
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Do post pictures! Always nice to see photos!! Smiling
Name: Mark Mallon
seattle wa
Region: United States of America Region: Pacific Northwest Region: Southwest Gardening
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a2b1c3
Jun 1, 2012 12:41 PM CST
Hey wow thanks for the responce. I will upload photos just as soon as i can get them off my camera. mocropot, might not help you but i put a beam across the middle of the raised bed then cover with 2 sheets of glass from a old window like a ' A Frame ' with the sides open. It has been my experience that its the wet not the cold that gets them.... but its not that cold in seattle. You could allways build a small frame with plywood sides and then layer 6 ml clear plastic sheeting over it. Also dont forget some of the old tricks, ive never tryed myself but... http://www.ehow.com/way_6470455_heat-greenhouse-compost.html wouldent work all winter but might be something. it allways helps if your raised bed has Thick sides like 4 x 6 's on there side or whatever. My new one i made for the opuntia has 8 inch thick wood beams to help slow temp changes in the soil. one more thing http://www.charleysgreenhouse.com/175-419-Soil-Heating-Cable... or just hang a 60 watt incandescent off a cable in your a frame with the sides covered.
DON'T PANIC
Name: Mark Mallon
seattle wa
Region: United States of America Region: Pacific Northwest Region: Southwest Gardening
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a2b1c3
Jun 1, 2012 12:48 PM CST
Hey Brian do you get regular snow cover in that bed or cover it yourself or does it not matter there?
DON'T PANIC
Name: Brian
Ontario Canada (Zone 5b)
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bearsearch
Jun 2, 2012 5:34 AM CST
Hi Mark, we usually get good reliable snow cover but this year was rain. I usually pile extra snow on top only because there isn't anyplace to put it when shovelling the sidewalk. I too have found the winter wet is what kills them, NOT the cold (but that depends on what varieties you are growing as some won't survive extended dry cold periods either). Some of the opuntia are covered with pots to prevent snow getting on them as that is enough to rot them while most get no cover. I have some pictures I'll upload later as they don't want to upload this morning for some reason.
Name: Mark Mallon
seattle wa
Region: United States of America Region: Pacific Northwest Region: Southwest Gardening
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a2b1c3
Jun 20, 2012 11:22 AM CST
Pictures
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DON'T PANIC
Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Plumerias Photo Contest Winner: 2015 Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator Region: Florida Cat Lover Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
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Dutchlady1
Jun 20, 2012 11:26 AM CST
Wonderful beds!
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener Xeriscape
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tarev
Jun 20, 2012 11:33 AM CST
Love them all Mark! Hurray! Lovey dubby Thanks for sharing your pics!

In my area here, because we are now hitting triple digit temps..I have been watering my cacti collection a bit more often and they just love it! Sometimes I have to really observe and remind myself, this is their active season, time to hasten the watering a bit Big Grin Love seeing their leaves turning very glossy green!
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
Dances with Dirt
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gardengus
Jun 22, 2012 1:48 PM CST
Beautiful,that is a nice collection there,
cactus would love the type of weather we have had here this year Hot & Dry
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.

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