Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Huntington Gardens

A 120 acres of incredible gardens on rolling hills in San Marino, California.
A must see Meca for gardeners around the world.

The Huntington Desert Garden

Clump of Mexican Fire Barrel Cactus
This is a group of Mexican Fire Barrel cactus (Ferocactus pilosus).  I took special note of this cactus when I learned that this cactus was rated cold hardy to about 17 degrees Fahrenheit, that makes it possible to grow in Austin, Texas with a towel covering maybe one or two nights a year (I added this to my plant list).

The Huntington Gardens was my first exposure to Hechtia's and Dyckia's seen blooming above.  Some of which were giant plants the size of a VW Beetle.  I quickly learned which ones were the most cold hardy and looked forward to adding them to my cactus garden in Austin (which was beginning to come together in my mind at this point)

Old Man of the Andes,
Here is another cold hardy columnar cactus, Oreocereus celsianus (Old Man of the Andes).  Most growers have this rated to about 15 degrees Fahrenheit.  Its a very slow grower but thankfully many older and taller Oreocereus are available from reputable nurseries and even can be found occasionally in big box stores.