Oreocereus trollii

Out & About—The 34th Annual Inter-City Cactus & Succulent Show

Out & About

Although I have been collecting, growing, killing, and destroying plants since 1962 or so, it wasn’t until around 1968 that I started specializing in cacti & succulents.

In my retirement years, which began on January 1, 2017, I have been extraordinarily bored. That boredom has led me to develop even more my interest in cacti & succulents, so much more that I’m now entering my cacti & succulents in competitive shows. I’m doing fairly well, having received many first, second and third place ribbons, as well as a Judge’s Choice ribbon and a Best in Show ribbon.

This past weekend, I entered 33 plants/items in 28 categories at the 34th Annual Inter-City Cactus & Succulent Show at the Los Angeles County Arboretum. It is the largest cactus & succulent show in the nation, and probably the world, and probably ranks as one of the largest plant shows, as well.

Founded in 1985, the Inter-City show combines the expertise of members from the Long Beach Cactus Club, the Los Angeles Cactus & Succulent Society, and the San Gabriel Valley Cactus & Succulent Society. I belong to the Long Beach Cactus Club, which was founded in 1933 and is the oldest cactus & succulent club in the nation.

According to the show’s rules, I am a novice, simply because I haven’t been entering competitive shows for very long, so I don’t have the 41 first place ribbons from competitive shows that would bump me up to their Advanced category.

Out of my 28 entries, I came home with 5 first place ribbons, 10 second place ribbons, and 3 third place ribbons, as well as one of the prestigious “Outstanding” show plant ribbon. I also won a “Trophy Cup Trifecta” by sweeping first, second, and third place in the Photography, Novice category.

Here is a video I made of my entries in this year’s Inter-City show:

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23 thoughts on “Out & About—The 34th Annual Inter-City Cactus & Succulent Show

    1. Russel Ray Photos Post author

      I don’t grow or propagate plants in the traditional way, which pisses off a lot of professional growers. It’s a problem I’m learning to deal with by keeping my mouth shut unless someone asks me in a private conversation. So if I were to write a book on that subject, I’d have to title it something like “There’s another way!” or “It doesn’t have to be that way!” or “You can do it differently!”

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      1. acflory

        Hah! I’d buy a book like that! Seriously. There’s a gardening show on TV every Friday night. They’re are all brilliant gardeners, but it’s all so…involved. I want to love gardening, not slog at an unpaid job.
        Once you have your first book safely published, how about writing a second one about ‘there’s more than one way to skin a cat’? Ahem, maybe not. Stick with the first title. 🙂

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    1. Russel Ray Photos Post author

      As my wise old grandmother told me in 1966: “If you like it, there’s at least one other person on Earth who likes it. Find that person and form a club.” Our club back in those days was called “pen pal.” In today’s Internet world, it’s easy to find that other person, and that usually leads to a group of other persons.

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    1. Russel Ray Photos Post author

      It depends on the pot. They can be planted in big pots that take a few cubic yards of dirt…. flat pots…. small pots. They are just like any other plant when put in containers except that they don’t require as much water as ferns, begonias, and such.

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        1. Russel Ray Photos Post author

          If they grow too big for the pot, you either need to (1) plant them in the ground, (2) transfer them to a bigger pot, or (3) trim them to make them a bonsai. Many succulents, like jade plants, can be made into great bonsai. Cactus, not so much.

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          1. cat9984

            Planting in the ground in Michigan is probably not such a great idea. I have a plant light and table from the grandmother they seem to be rather fond of. So, I will watch for when they are ready to move up to larger living quarters.

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                1. Russel Ray Photos Post author

                  One day I was so engrossed in setting up a new program management software program that I didn’t realize that it had started snowing outside. Hard. When I went to go for lunch, my white car was nowhere to be found. I swore then that I would only buy black cars in the future. I guess that’s why I have a black 2019 Honda Insight….

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