When I was a kid, my mom often had a cactus garden in the living room. It usually consisted of a few tiny cactuses in a wide shallow pot, a little gravel road, an a tiny clay chiva. A Chiva is a traditional Colombian bus that is used in the rural regions. It is painted up in the colors of the flag and was always packed to overflowing with people, chickens, bananas, plantains, and all sorts of other things.
I wanted to start my own miniature cactus garden for my dining room table. I was going to buy some small cactus as the greenhouse, but then I spotted this pack of seeds at the hardware store for only $1.19. I figured I’d give it a whirl and try starting my own tiny cactuses from seed.
I wasn’t hoping for much, I’ve heard they can be difficult to start from seed. I started by filling a seed flat with a mix of equal parts potting soil and coarse sand. On February 13th I sprinkled the cactus seeds on top and lightly worked the top of the soil. Then I sprayed well with water, covered it with a plastic dome, and put it down on the heating mat in my basement seed starting area. I checked the flat daily and sprayed it with water when the top of the soil dried out (which happens quickly when you have things on a heating mat). Seven days later, on February 21, I noticed three tiny cactus seedlings in the flat.
These seedlings are TINY. They’re very hard to spot, especially since they look a lot like the larger pieces of sand. You can see in the photo below, I used a very small sewing pin to show scale. I thought it would help show you how tiny these plants really are. Right now I have 8 tiny cactus seeds that have germinated. I wonder what varieties I’ll have when they grow up?
I’m super excited about these tiny seedlings. It will be interesting to see how long it takes them to grow big enough to plant in a cactus garden to surround the small chiva. I’ll be sure to keep you posted on how these do.
Have you ever had a cactus as a houseplant?Filed under Seed Sowing | Comments (18)