Tag Archives: self-seeded

Flowering #cactus – anyone know its name?

cacti and lettuce 4

There’s a story behind this ugly-duckling beauty. Back when I was a kid, this cactus sat on a sort of plinth, outside our front door. It got a lot of sun and little else. Yet it flowered every single year.

When Mum died and Dad came to live with us in Warrandyte, the Daughter and I closed up their old house. One of the precious things we brought to our much smaller house was this cactus. I put it in a bigger pot. I gave it fresh new soil. I watered it. And the damn thing languished out in the garden with not a flower in sight. Sulking?

Then, as a last ditch effort I decided to bring the cactus up to the north-facing deck. I plonked it against the wall and pretty much forgot about it. Now this:

cacti and lettuce 1

Isn’t it lovely?

I’m over the moon to have the damn thing flowering so beautifully, but I have no idea what I finally did right. That’s why I need to find its name; so I can look it up. If any of you know, please, please, PLEASE tell me in comments!!!

And now, just to round out this post, here are a couple of pics of something I know how to get right – lettuce.

cacti and lettuce 2

cacti and lettuce 3

All these lovelies grew from seeds I harvested last year. The two onion plants grew from a tenacious brown onion that sprouted in my cupboard.

-hugs to all-


p.s. If you know how to propogate cacti I’d love to know that too. I’ve tried cutting off a bit and sticking it in the ground, but it didn’t work. :/

A nursery for tomatoes

It’s Sunday, and I’ll have to go prepare for the working week soon, but I thought I’d leave you a foodies sort of post before I go.

This is a picture of the second generation tomato that self seeded in my pots last summer.

tomato closeup with tspoon

The teaspoon is for scale. During the height of the fruiting season we were getting tomatoes twice that size but I didn’t think to take a photo of them. -sigh-

The original tomato plant was a miniature Roma, but as you can see from the shape of its descendant, it must have reverted back to ‘wilder’ genes in generation 2.

The first self-seeding was an accident, but the plants were so prolific, and so hardy I decided to save the seeds for the following year. After the plants had almost finished cropping [late autumn] I cut the last, not so appetizing tomatoes in half, scooped out the seeds, and spread them on a layer of facial tissue. I placed another layer of tissue on top and let the seeds dry out.

Then, a few weeks ago I decided to try out EllaDee’s idea of placing pot plants in plastic tubs to prevent the bugs from getting to them. As well as bugs, I was worried that any late October frosts would kill my seedlings before they had a chance to mature.

I had a small, terracotta pot so I filled it with potting mix, lay the sheet of seeds on top and sprinkled a couple of ml of extra soil on top of that. After giving the whole thing a good soak, I covered it with the bottom of a plastic storage box. Exhibit B – the nursery box!

tomatoe nursery box

I didn’t really expect anything amazing to happen, but it did! This is the terracotta pot, absolutely full of tiny, 3rd generation tomato seedlings.

tomato terracotta pot

Once they’re big enough I’ll transplant them into individual pots and give some away to friends and neighbours. Watch out, you could be getting a 3rd generation tomato!

Have a great week,


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