I brought in my Astrophytum capricorne to prevent them from suffering in the cold weather on my balcony. Like most Astrophytum, the capricorne are growing soooo slowly. The biggest plant is just about 3 cm in diameter right now. And none of them have grown their characteristic spines yet.
While repotting these three babies, I realized how massive they have become. It really took them a while to start growing, but now I’m not so worried about them.
These were actually my first ever attempt at growing cacti from seeds. And it didn’t go well. Most of the seeds germinated and I ended up with just about 50 seedlings, but all but these three died from damping off. This is apparently a common problem with Astrophytum seedlings, especially Astrophytum myriostigma.
But look at my three remaining plants now!
I’ve been growing cacti from seeds for a few years now and not all of them have been a success. This Astrophytum asterias “super kabuto” is now 3,5 years old, but it still looks like a tiny seedling. Its growth stalled entirely when it was a couple of months old and it never really caught up. Recently it decided to grow again from the top of the stalled growth and I’m happy about that. Let’s just see how long I get to keep this straggler.
This year’s last cactus flowers have just started to open after a couple of weeks with rain and awful weather. I managed to capture a nice pic of my Astrophytum ornatum in bloom, moments before the rain started pouring down once again. I guess even cactus and succulents enjoy a nice cold shower once in a while!
This is by far the biggest flower I’ve seen on this cactus. I’ve been feeding all of my plants extra much this summer, which is probably why most of my plants have started to explode with growth.
The 3,5 year old Astrophytum “seedlings” have grown really big and are already in need of another repotting. They’re starting to touch and I don’t want them to rub up against each other. If they do, they might lose some of their fluffyness and it won’t grow back if that happens.
I’ve had these Astrophytums (first pic is A. myriostigma and the second is A. coahuilense) for almost 4 years now and they’re the slowest growing cacti I own. These ones are special to me because they started my fascination with spineless cacti.
The bright part of the plant shows exactly how much they have grown in the 4 years I’ve had them. Normally, the new growth just blends in, but I kind of had an accident with mine. Just after I bought them, I mistakenly placed them under an aphid-infested tree and they were covered in sticky aphid poo. The poo then acted like agar, which is the perfect nutritious meal for black sooty mold. I now had two sticky, mold infested cacti. Because Astrophytums are hairy, I couldn’t remove all of the soot mold and my plants have looked dirty ever since then. The new growth on the top of the plants is perfectly clean, and it now acts as a way for me to check on them and if they’re growing like they should. And it looks kind of cool, too.
The Astrophytum trio is looking so good and puffy! They tend to flatten when they need water, so it’s easy to manage.
I discovered how well these can take direct sunlight too, compared to pretty much every other cactus I own. The little fluff balls on the surface of the plants act as protection against the harmful sun rays.
My Astrophytum ornatum now has three flowers and is three times more charming than yesterday! They smell just like your average flowery hand soap.
My trusty old Astrophytum ornatum is flowering for the first time this year! What a great way to start the weekend 🌼
I just watered these three Astrophytum seedlings for the first time this year and they have plumped up a lot. They look perfect and healthy! It still gets a little bit chilly on the balcony, so I’m being careful about watering when I know the sun isn’t going to shine for a while.