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Spaz's Cactuses- Native rescue

native plants plants cacti

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18 replies to this topic

#1 Offline Spazmops - Posted March 29 2021 - 10:38 AM

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I've recently been getting more interested in cactuses. This was spurred by the death of my grafted moon cactus, which I'd had for about two years and I really enjoyed looking at. I ordered a 6" Pilosocereus azureus off of Etsy, which should arrive in a few days. 

 

In the meantime though, I was out on a walk enjoying the warm weather when I saw a small pad of Opuntia polyacantha? on the side of the trail.  It looked alive, but chances were very low that it would survive the upcoming cold snap seeing as it was tiny and lacked roots. I brought it home and prepared a pot for it. It's a tall pot with mesh covering the drainage hole and a shallow gravel layer on top of that, all to maximize drainage. I mixed up a basic succulent mix with pea gravel, compost, potting soil, and some orchid bark. I stuck the cactus pad about halfway into the mix and covered the mix with a thin layer of potting soil to keep the cactus upright and to ensure that the area around where the roots will soon be stays moist. Assuming it takes root and grows well, I'll plant it outside next year seeing as it's a native plant.  

Opuntia pad
Opuntia planted

 

I've also had this planter for about 4 years. It's full of cactuses that were listed as 'small succulent' at the plant nursery. If you want to try IDing them go for it. 

repeat cactus planter

 


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Co-owner and founder of Mountain Myrmeculture and The Menagerie Discord Server

Ants I have:

1 Formica fusca group- 0 workers

1 Tetramorium immigrans colony-20 workers

1 Dorymyrmex insanus- 1 queen, used to have workers

 

1 large P. occidentalis colony- around 50 workers, plenty of brood

 

 


#2 Offline ANTdrew - Posted March 29 2021 - 10:56 AM

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Nice! We sadly only have one native cactus, the eastern prickly pear, Opuntia humifusa. I’m currently starting some seeds outside, but they have yet to germinate. I have a small patch by my front steps, which bloomed for the first time lasy year. I also raised those from seeds many moons ago. It’s a wonder there are any cacti here in such a rainy area. You should have no trouble starting from a pad.
  • TennesseeAnts and Spazmops like this

"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25  

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#3 Offline FeedTheAnts - Posted March 29 2021 - 11:37 AM

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Cacti were my first pet. I have a Mammillaria spinosissimma that was given to me on my 9th birthday, and now I'm 17. I haven't watered it in months, but it's still going strong!


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I accidentally froze all my ants 


#4 Offline Spazmops - Posted March 29 2021 - 2:52 PM

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Nice! We sadly only have one native cactus, the eastern prickly pear, Opuntia humifusa. I’m currently starting some seeds outside, but they have yet to germinate. I have a small patch by my front steps, which bloomed for the first time lasy year. I also raised those from seeds many moons ago. It’s a wonder there are any cacti here in such a rainy area. You should have no trouble starting from a pad.

Having abundant native succulents can be really neat, but it's not much fun when you trip and land on a prickly pear or bend over to pick up a rock and get stabbed by a yucca. Some of the smaller species we have are especially painful, because each tiny spine becomes a splinter that's near impossible to remove even with tweezers. I've never tried growing cacti from seeds, what was the approximate success rate? 


  • Swirlysnowflake and Antkeeper01 like this

Co-owner and founder of Mountain Myrmeculture and The Menagerie Discord Server

Ants I have:

1 Formica fusca group- 0 workers

1 Tetramorium immigrans colony-20 workers

1 Dorymyrmex insanus- 1 queen, used to have workers

 

1 large P. occidentalis colony- around 50 workers, plenty of brood

 

 


#5 Offline Spazmops - Posted March 29 2021 - 2:54 PM

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Cacti were my first pet. I have a Mammillaria spinosissimma that was given to me on my 9th birthday, and now I'm 17. I haven't watered it in months, but it's still going strong!

Awesome! Has it flowered?


Co-owner and founder of Mountain Myrmeculture and The Menagerie Discord Server

Ants I have:

1 Formica fusca group- 0 workers

1 Tetramorium immigrans colony-20 workers

1 Dorymyrmex insanus- 1 queen, used to have workers

 

1 large P. occidentalis colony- around 50 workers, plenty of brood

 

 


#6 Offline ANTdrew - Posted March 29 2021 - 3:23 PM

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Our spiky plants here are mostly the thuggish invasives like multiflora rose, mile-a-minute, and wine berries. There’s nothing worse than a paw full of cactus spines, though!

Edited by ANTdrew, March 30 2021 - 2:06 AM.

  • TennesseeAnts and Spazmops like this

"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25  

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#7 Offline Kaelwizard - Posted March 30 2021 - 6:22 AM

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Not trying to be that guy, but isn't it cacti, not cactuses? Or are both okay, because apparently cactuses is not getting the red underline?


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#8 Offline Spazmops - Posted March 30 2021 - 7:17 AM

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Both are okay, actually. Plurals are weird.

Co-owner and founder of Mountain Myrmeculture and The Menagerie Discord Server

Ants I have:

1 Formica fusca group- 0 workers

1 Tetramorium immigrans colony-20 workers

1 Dorymyrmex insanus- 1 queen, used to have workers

 

1 large P. occidentalis colony- around 50 workers, plenty of brood

 

 


#9 Offline FeedTheAnts - Posted March 30 2021 - 7:47 AM

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Cacti were my first pet. I have a Mammillaria spinosissimma that was given to me on my 9th birthday, and now I'm 17. I haven't watered it in months, but it's still going strong!

Awesome! Has it flowered?

 

Yes, multiple times. 


I accidentally froze all my ants 


#10 Offline Chickalo - Posted March 30 2021 - 11:05 AM

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Sounds great!  I'd do something similar, but up here it feels like its winter for years, so no native cacti (obviously I mean it's Massachusetts) D:  Also I'd probably manage to kill the cactus somehow : P


Edited by Chickalo, March 30 2021 - 11:05 AM.

Nope nope nope nope nope


#11 Offline ANTdrew - Posted March 30 2021 - 11:46 AM

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Sounds great! I'd do something similar, but up here it feels like its winter for years, so no native cacti (obviously I mean it's Massachusetts) D: Also I'd probably manage to kill the cactus somehow : P

Opuntia humifusa is native to MA! It eats snow and ice for breakfast.
https://www.bing.com...RST&vt=4&sim=11
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"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25  

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#12 Offline Chickalo - Posted March 30 2021 - 11:50 AM

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Sounds great! I'd do something similar, but up here it feels like its winter for years, so no native cacti (obviously I mean it's Massachusetts) D: Also I'd probably manage to kill the cactus somehow : P

Opuntia humifusa is native to MA! It eats snow and ice for breakfast.
https://www.bing.com...RST&vt=4&sim=11

 

Welp.  My life has been a lie.  Time to go on a quest to find the Cactus Who Likes the Cold

Welp.  That quest has been a lie.  Opuntia humifusa live on Nantucket lol


Edited by Chickalo, March 30 2021 - 11:51 AM.

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Nope nope nope nope nope


#13 Offline ANTdrew - Posted March 31 2021 - 8:46 AM

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Found a photo of my Opuntia humifusa blooming. Check out the ants seeking nectar.

Attached Files


"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25  

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#14 Offline Devi - Posted March 31 2021 - 9:19 AM

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Wow, that's awesome Drew.  I have always kept gardens in the past, but the ants have never really taken interest in them.  I do however have a neighbor with this huge vine complex in his backyard and he has a couple huge colonies of Camponotus that just love the flowers.  I want to plant some more native plants in my backyard and see if that makes a difference.  My backyard used to have formica and Camponotus but is now dominated by tetras and solenopsis molesta. :(  As for the cacti, I know of some near me so maybe I'll go check them out.  I used to have this little orange cactus I got from Home Depot a while ago.  That thing was pretty cool.  Lol.



#15 Offline Spazmops - Posted March 31 2021 - 12:52 PM

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Found a photo of my Opuntia humifusa blooming. Check out the ants seeking nectar.

I'm hoping that my new Opuntia will have a similar effect. Once it takes root I'll put the pot outside, and I plan on transplanting it next year.


Co-owner and founder of Mountain Myrmeculture and The Menagerie Discord Server

Ants I have:

1 Formica fusca group- 0 workers

1 Tetramorium immigrans colony-20 workers

1 Dorymyrmex insanus- 1 queen, used to have workers

 

1 large P. occidentalis colony- around 50 workers, plenty of brood

 

 


#16 Offline Antcatcherpro3 - Posted March 31 2021 - 1:21 PM

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I have  a cactus in my room. Idk what type. It's small.


It it doing the best out of all my plants that I keep. It's about to bloom I think.



#17 Offline ANTdrew - Posted March 31 2021 - 1:37 PM

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Found a photo of my Opuntia humifusa blooming. Check out the ants seeking nectar.

I'm hoping that my new Opuntia will have a similar effect. Once it takes root I'll put the pot outside, and I plan on transplanting it next year.
The blooms don’t last very long, but I guarantee all kinds of insects will come drink the nectar, including ants.

"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25  

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#18 Offline ANTdrew - Posted June 1 2021 - 4:43 AM

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My Opuntia humifusa are blooming once again. I raised these from seeds gathered in the winter of 2015.

IMG 9925

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"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25  

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#19 Offline Antkeeper01 - Posted June 1 2021 - 5:50 AM

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wow, i saw lots of cactuses at this park in Colorado springs, one sp was small, and the other grew pretty and some were close to blooming


1X Pogonomyrmex occidentalis 40-50 Workers

1X Solenopsis molesta 10 Workers (mono)

Ants I Want: Crematogaster sp, Camponotus Sp., Ponera Pennsylvanica, Mymercocystus sp.

 

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