Plant ID forum→Cactus identification for a novice!

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Name: Jake
Cornwall, United Kingdom
JakeA007
Apr 18, 2020 11:09 AM CST
Hello, just bought these 3 cactuses and wondering what kind they're? Is the 1 on the right of the picture healthy with the brown on top? I'm planting them together in a long thin window planter, would I need drainage holes or would using gravel in the bottom with charcoal be adequate (like a terrarium)
Many thanks for any advice..
Jake
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Apr 18, 2020 11:30 AM CST
That one with the very fluffy white hair is Oreocereus celsianus, it has a nickname: Old man of the Andes. It's natural habitat is in the high altitude area of South America. Let others id the other two.

It is never advisable to put them in a terrarium set-up, so if those were mine, I would maintain them in their individual containers for now; do not ever block the drain holes with rocks, always use containers with drain holes, and use grittier, coarser media when you plant them. If you do repot, do not water right away. Got to allow the plant's roots to heal and recover from the disturbance at the root level. Since they are succulents, they have enough moisture in their body to sustain them till it gets to grow newer roots to better anchor themselves. Your plants still looks quite young, and typically their root systems are shallow, so they do not need very deep containers.

I would revisit the plants again, this time next year if there is any need to repot, if you choose to leave them as is for now.

I would suggest get to know first the plant as they are right now. They would be happier outdoors, in a part sun/part shade area weather permitting. If your summers are too rainy, then make sure they are protected, or keep them indoors but by your sunniest window, ideally a south facing or west facing window.
[Last edited by tarev - Apr 18, 2020 11:34 AM (+)]
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Apr 18, 2020 11:40 AM CST
The one at the top is Opuntia called Joseph's Coat. Left is probably something like Espostoa (Old Lady cactus), and right is most likely a Mammillaria. Yes, the brown spines are normal.

None of these plants will be happy in the same pot (different watering needs). No cactus will be happy in a pot without drainage. Rocks on the bottom is no substitute for drainage. You can place the pots in the window box and cover the tops with decorative moss or something. Put gravel in the bottom of the box to lift them to the right level and to keep them from sitting in water.

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Name: Jake
Cornwall, United Kingdom
JakeA007
Apr 18, 2020 3:15 PM CST
Thank you both for your replies, the help identifying them and advice on best way to plant them, think I will definitely stick with my 30cm window planter but have them individually potted inside. Would I need to use the activated charcoal that came with the cactus soil and if so where does that go? Thanks again. Jake
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Apr 18, 2020 5:05 PM CST
JakeA007 said:Thank you both for your replies, the help identifying them and advice on best way to plant them, think I will definitely stick with my 30cm window planter but have them individually potted inside. Would I need to use the activated charcoal that came with the cactus soil and if so where does that go? Thanks again. Jake


You may just mix it in to the cactus soil, or not use it. Either way is fine, just make sure container has drain holes.

Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Apr 19, 2020 12:16 AM CST
A opuntia monacantha
An espostoa(lanata)
and a mammillaria...maybe Mammillaria xaltianguensis subs. bambusiphila , mayvb
Name: Jake
Cornwall, United Kingdom
JakeA007
Apr 19, 2020 3:23 AM CST
That's brilliant thank you for all your help.
Best wishes
Jake
Name: Jake
Cornwall, United Kingdom
JakeA007
Apr 19, 2020 7:33 AM CST
Do these look ok now I've planted? I didn't have any pots the next size up as the roots were coming through the small ones so I made these as I'll hiding them in the window planter. Thin gravel in bottom with lots of drain holes, cactus mix soil with a little charcoal.
Thumb of 2020-04-19/JakeA007/678c59

Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Apr 19, 2020 8:05 AM CST
JakeA007 said:Do these look ok now I've planted? I didn't have any pots the next size up as the roots were coming through the small ones so I made these as I'll hiding them in the window planter. Thin gravel in bottom with lots of drain holes, cactus mix soil with a little charcoal.
Thumb of 2020-04-19/JakeA007/678c59



Ive been told not to use charcoal...you may need to replant them...
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
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porkpal
Apr 19, 2020 9:11 AM CST
No gravel in the bottom either if you decide to replant.
Porkpal
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Apr 19, 2020 9:31 AM CST
Both cause moisture retention.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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Webmaster: osnnv.org
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Apr 19, 2020 9:46 AM CST
DaisyI said:Both cause moisture retention.


I was told charcoal was caustic..
Name: Jake
Cornwall, United Kingdom
JakeA007
Apr 19, 2020 10:15 AM CST
Oh no that's annoying, what I read suggested using the gravel and charcoal to ensure it drained quickly. Looks like I'll have to replant. Do the pot sizes look ok for the size plants? The original pots they came in had the roots growing out the bottom.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Apr 19, 2020 10:49 AM CST
To me it all looks okay. I would not touch it anymore. As always discipline in watering. That charcoal is too little to damage it, not unlike when it is used in other types of planting. You will still exercise watering intervals anyways.
Name: Jake
Cornwall, United Kingdom
JakeA007
Apr 19, 2020 11:08 AM CST
Ok thank you Tarev, so you personally wouldn't be worried about the gravel in the bottom?
Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Apr 19, 2020 11:21 AM CST
JakeA007 said:Ok thank you Tarev, so you personally wouldn't be worried about the gravel in the bottom?


Му soil is made from gravel. I wouldnt worry. I dont loose many plants...and when i do...its usually for other reasons..
Name: Johannian
The Black Hills, SD (Zone 5b)
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Johannian
Apr 19, 2020 3:05 PM CST
I believe the one on the (bottom) left is some type of snow cactus, right @skopjecollection?
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[Last edited by Johannian - Apr 19, 2020 3:05 PM (+)]
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Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Apr 19, 2020 10:28 PM CST
Johannian said:I believe the one on the (bottom) left is some type of snow cactus, right @skopjecollection?


I dont know what a snow cactus is. Most nicknames mean nothing to me. I know its an espostoa, under "peruvian old lady"
Name: Frenchy
Falls Church, VA (Zone 7b)
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Frenchy21
Apr 19, 2020 10:48 PM CST
Jake, your homemade pots are brilliant! I need to make some of those. Smiling
Name: Jake
Cornwall, United Kingdom
JakeA007
Apr 19, 2020 11:30 PM CST
skopjecollection said:

Му soil is made from gravel. I wouldnt worry. I dont loose many plants...and when i do...its usually for other reasons..


Ok thank you

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