Some challenges

With such a perfect environment for cactus, what can go wrong? It is interesting to see some of the obstacles and challenges with which Jim is sometimes faced. No garden is without obstacles: be it a rose garden or a bed of marigolds, and yet here there are very few problems in comparison. Requiring almost no attention for pests and diseases or watering, Jim likes the cactus looking natural and the bigger the better. Handling these giants, moving them or cutting them back is a skill learnt from experience.

« Jim inspects the growth of his favourite cactus, a young specimen of Trichocereus pasacana. This species grows to over 10 metres in height.

Z When this Agave americana grew too large and over the path, the spiny leaf tips were cui off. Gazanias were also planted under its spread to keep visitors out of harms way.

Z When this Agave americana grew too large and over the path, the spiny leaf tips were cui off. Gazanias were also planted under its spread to keep visitors out of harms way.

4 A large multi-branched Trichocereus bridgesii had ^ become top-heavy and fell over in the wind. This form of the species was too spiky and awkward to be propped up again. All the long branches were cut off and laid alongside the main stump. After a matter of months with all parts lying in the sun. new growth has come forth, not only from the old stump, but from the cut off branches as well. These branches can be planted elsewhere to start again, or left to make a big forest.

** Ferocactus horridus. This plant grew two new branches on one side, displacing the centre of gravity, and pulling ihe main body over. This is the same plant seen on page 92. Jim's next big challenge will be to return it to an upright posi-

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