Cactus and Tender Succulents forum: Who grows cactus from seed?

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Name: Keith
West Babylon, NY (Zone 7a)
Region: United States of America Winter Sowing Plays in the sandbox Birds Native Plants and Wildflowers Tomato Heads
Vegetable Grower Garden Photography Hybridizer Spiders! Annuals Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
keithp2012
Jun 5, 2016 5:07 PM CST
Does anyone else do this? I know they can be difficult to grow and require patience and excellent care, but in the end it's worth it!
Name: April
San Francisco (Zone 9b)
Cactus and Succulents
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alovealoe
Jun 5, 2016 10:13 PM CST
I do! I think the idea of doing it was more intimidating than actually doing it. Its also much cheaper to grow from seed. I sowed my first lithops in only 6 months ago. They all germinated rather quickly and are still going strong. I was very happy with my success that I bought more seeds!

Gibbaeum
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Lithops
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Conophytum pillansii
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Fenestria aurantiaca
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Argyroderma mix
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Assorted cactus mix
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Name: Keith
West Babylon, NY (Zone 7a)
Region: United States of America Winter Sowing Plays in the sandbox Birds Native Plants and Wildflowers Tomato Heads
Vegetable Grower Garden Photography Hybridizer Spiders! Annuals Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
keithp2012
Jun 5, 2016 11:37 PM CST
alovealoe said:I do! I think the idea of doing it was more intimidating than actually doing it. Its also much cheaper to grow from seed. I sowed my first lithops in only 6 months ago. They all germinated rather quickly and are still going strong. I was very happy with my success that I bought more seeds!

Gibbaeum
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/99592e
Lithops
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/930fca
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/30173a
Conophytum pillansii
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/ecb518
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/a3aa03
Fenestria aurantiaca
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/7ab55a
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/ed1902
Argyroderma mix
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/617eeb
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/f1b080
Assorted cactus mix
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/8ebdf0
Thumb of 2016-06-06/alovealoe/434bb5









@alovealoe They all look amazing!
[Last edited by keithp2012 - Jun 6, 2016 9:47 AM (+)]
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Name: Daisy
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
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DaisyI
Jun 6, 2016 10:57 AM CST
Those are great looking seedlings!

I am growing some mystery cactus that Keith sent me. I think I have about 30 youngsters and more are coming up. The problem with mixed seed is that there are too many germination speeds. Some are still hatching while others should be a little dryer now.

Not complaining Keith. I will send more photos when they look like something. Smiling

Daisy
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
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gasrocks
Jun 6, 2016 11:02 AM CST
Any special tips for LIthops? I just started some. I have never seen seed so small! I have little green dots so far. Gene
Name: Keith
West Babylon, NY (Zone 7a)
Region: United States of America Winter Sowing Plays in the sandbox Birds Native Plants and Wildflowers Tomato Heads
Vegetable Grower Garden Photography Hybridizer Spiders! Annuals Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
keithp2012
Jun 6, 2016 1:21 PM CST
@Daisyl Can't wait to see! 🙂
Name: Keith
West Babylon, NY (Zone 7a)
Region: United States of America Winter Sowing Plays in the sandbox Birds Native Plants and Wildflowers Tomato Heads
Vegetable Grower Garden Photography Hybridizer Spiders! Annuals Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
keithp2012
Jun 6, 2016 1:25 PM CST
My G. mihanovichii seedlings, I'm keeping the variegated one! 😎
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Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
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plantmanager
Jun 6, 2016 1:49 PM CST
Those little varigated ones look great, Keith!
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Name: April
San Francisco (Zone 9b)
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alovealoe
Jun 6, 2016 2:35 PM CST
gasrocks said:Any special tips for LIthops? I just started some. I have never seen seed so small! I have little green dots so far. Gene


Cool! I'd say to water from the bottom once they are a little bit bigger and you're past the stage of spraying them. Do you have a specific species or just a lithops mix?
Name: Alisa
Gresham, Oregon (Zone 8a)
Region: Oregon
Purplebloomcactus
Jun 6, 2016 2:37 PM CST
Hi How do you find growers with cactus seeds?
Name: April
San Francisco (Zone 9b)
Cactus and Succulents
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alovealoe
Jun 6, 2016 2:57 PM CST
Purplebloomcactus said:Hi How do you find growers with cactus seeds?


I've bought mine from [url=www.thecactusstore.com]www.thecactusstore.com[/url]. I've heard that Mesa Garden is a great source for seeds as well. I've also bought those mixed cactus seed packs from Lowes. Just whatever you do, don't buy seeds online from a seller who is based in China. More often than not, they'll just send you grass seeds.
Name: Daisy
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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DaisyI
Jun 6, 2016 8:57 PM CST
Ebay is a great place to find odd seeds but I would go a little further than April and say don't buy from anyone outside the US. And, even if they are based in the US, if they are selling cactus seed and used tires, t-shirts, etc. - don't buy from them. Make sure they actually have a cactus nursery. Otherwise, you will be buying (grass)seeds that the vendor bought from China and repackaged.

Keith, those variegated ones are gorgeous!

Daisy
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Jun 7, 2016 1:22 PM CST
Buying seeds on the interwebs is an exercise in faith (a) that the seed is what it is purported to be, and (b) that it will be fresh and germinate. Reputation is everything. You still won't know for years in many cases what you actually have. In many cases there are hints that a seller does not know what they have (eg. if they are also selling seed for named hybrids, which do not usually grow true from seed, or have misidentified plants they are selling).

There are sufficient succulents around here that seeds are easier to come by. Here are some native seedlings. The Dudleyas in the fifth picture make a very small (dust-like) seed.

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A couple other Ferocacti.

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And a few aloes. First one a hybrid from seed, second one its offspring with a sibling.

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The biggest aloes that I've grown from seed are several years old now and starting to look like trees (because, well, that's what they are).

For the curious, here is a story of sex and inheritance.

The thread "Untitled" in Photo of Echeveria (Echeveria runyonii)
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Jun 7, 2016 1:52 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1175052 (13)
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
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gasrocks
Jun 7, 2016 1:28 PM CST
IMO, it is one thing to have an impressive Aloe and a whole nother thing to have an impressive Aloe that you grew from seed. Gene
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Foliage Fan Xeriscape Container Gardener Bromeliad
Hummingbirder Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier
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Baja_Costero
Jun 7, 2016 2:27 PM CST
The motivating thing for me with aloes, especially open hybrids, is the way they can surprise you. Given the size and the promiscuity of the genus, all sorts of interesting combinations can arise from seed.

One of my goals in the container garden is to provide hummingbird flowers year-round. Various succulents work for that, including the native Dudleyas, aloes, Gasterias, and Echeverias. Also Dyckias. Depending on the season there may be several of each genus in flower. I have raised hybrids of these plants based on the work of the hummingbirds, mostly. Most of the hybrids are not that memorable but every once in a while something special stands out.

Here are the two Gasterias which made the cut from a dozen or so hybrid seedlings I raised recently. Same mother, same father.

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They just flowered and one is pregnant. Thumbs up

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