Tag: coahuilense

Astrophytum coahuilense x ornatum, 2 months old

Look how adorable my little CO x OR hybrids are today! They’re like little fluffy stars.

I recently took them out of the little greenhouse, I kept them in. Some of the old seed shells started to grow some sort of white fungus, which would have killed the nearby seedlings very quickly if I hadn’t removed the top of the greenhouse. Astrophytum seedlings are notorious for dying from damping off, so maybe it was about time I introduced them to lower humidity.

Right now I keep the soil from drying out by watering a couple of times a week. They’re still under grow lights and probably will be until next spring. They’re still way too small to experience the late summer sun.

Astrophytum coahuilense x ornatum, 1 month old

My Astrophytum CO x OR seedlings are very much still alive. Most of the seedlings have now developed little fluffy haircuts and short, white spines. The grow lights are doing their job keeping the seedlings from etiolating. I may have placed them a little bit too close to the lights because some of them are a tiny bit too red or brown. I’ve lost exactly 0 seedlings so far, so I think the lighting situation is going to be okay.

Astrophytum coahuilense x ornatum, 5 days old

More Astrophytum coahuilense x ornatum seedlings have germinated. The oldest ones now look like little pink hearts. The grow light bulbs are a tiny bit too strong for cactus seedlings, but the redness here is still within the normal range. At least they aren’t stretching for light, which is arguably worse.

So far I have only seen mold on a couple of seeds and it’s especially visible when I use the macro lens for my phone. I’m keeping an eye on that, because I don’t want it to spread to the healthy seedlings. I’ve managed to keep it down to a minimum by washing the seeds in hydrogen peroxide before I tried to germinate them. I make sure to vent the little greenhouse I keep them in, by taking the lid off for half an hour each day, too.

Astrophytum coahuilense with its first flower!

This is so cool. I’ve had this Astrophytum coahuilense for 5 years and even though I got it with what looked like a flower bud, it never bloomed for me. My cacti have all been asked to bloom during bank holidays and weekends so I’m home to see it and they usually listen to me.

Astrophytum coahuilense looks almost like an Astrophytum myriostigma, but the “fur” grows closer together and it feels fluffier. It has no spines on its furry body, but the flower bud is both fluffy and spiny. It also grows super slowly. In the 5 years I’ve had it, it has only grown a couple of cm taller. Maybe because the little hairs block most of the sunlight.

Now what I’m trying to do is cross pollinate my Astrophytum coahuilense with my A. ornatum. I have no idea if it will work, but it’s a fun experiment. I found a cotton bud and mixed the pollen from the two flowers, making sure to hit the stigma in the process. I’ll make sure to update you if it worked.