Sunday, April 24, 2016

Large Cactus Story

When I acquired this cactus from my local garden store, Merrifield Garden Center, it was the size of a hen's egg. Over the years it grew and grew and grew, since my apartment and balcony has a desert climate, even the indoors winter period. I moved it dutifully from winter to summer quarters and back, and it grew more. From an egg it had become, in about 15 years, a baseball bat covered with fierce spines. Just a few weeks ago I noticed that the now three-foot-tall plant was leaning over, being unbalanced in its little clay pot. A few days later I was awoken by a huge crash as the plant fell over onto my glass collection which was displayed around it. By luck no glass was broken though some fell onto the rug. The cactus got a dent in it where it hit something, but it didn't break.

In the subsequent days I wrapped the cactus in a towel so I could hold it, and removed it from the table. I transferred it to a plastic garden tray and then carefully carried it out of my house and drove it to Merrifield Garden Center where I planned to donate it to their greenhouse and cactus collection. Unfortunately, they couldn't take it because they worry about donated plants carrying infections or bugs. But one kindly lady from their staff said she would adopt it and bring it to her home. If it survives maybe I'll hear about it someday. Meanwhile, some egg-sized cacti in the Merrifield collection are looking attractive...

Cactus drawing from memory, black tech ink on sketchbook page, 2 1/2" x 5", April 23, 2016.

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