Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Monday, October 17, 2016


In my Garden Bloggers Bloom Day post, I shared a picture of the flower buds on my golden rattail cactus. Because of the stormy weather I didn't get out to the greenhouse again till two days later, when I found this!

Cleistocactus winteri flower open!

Here's a shot showing most of the plant in its pot in the greenhouse. I watered it off and on over the summer, whenever I watered the Agaves, but honestly I wasn't convinced it was alive. It's sometimes so hard to know with cactus. I couldn't tell if it was growing or not.

But then I noticed that many of the tips were slightly more swollen and a little brighter color than the rest.  So I took that as a sign of life.
Can you see that the tip is fatter and brighter?

And when I brought it into the greenhouse, and saw the buds just a few weeks later, well, it was kind of undeniable.

It's alive!


  1. That's just beautiful Alison! I had one of these indoors -- in a planter that never goes outside, not even in the summer. I unfortunately let mine die from neglect. Trust me, you can tell when it's really dead.

  2. Once I had this cactus too, but it never flowered and at last it died because it became too cold in my greenhouse during a very cold winter.
    These beautiful flowers must have been a wonderful surprise for you when you came into your greenhouse. That's the fun of gardening.

  3. It's amazing what wonderful flowers cacti can produce.

  4. It's a gorgeous flower. The really prickly cacti usually put me off (shh! don't tell Loree!) but this one is definitely worth the risk of being bitten.

  5. I see the pineapple! Looks like it's doing good too!

  6. Such a pretty surprise! Congratulations.

  7. What a beautiful flower and such a lovely surprise.


Gardening is a solitary activity. But blogging about it is a social phenomenon! I don't make money from my blog by advertising, or use it to drive customers to a business. If you liked my post, or my writing or photography, or even just one picture or turn of phrase, I'd love to hear from you. That's how I get paid.