cold hardy cacti in cold and wet environment

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cuja1
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cold hardy cacti in cold and wet environment

Post by cuja1 »

Does anyone know if barrel cacti and forms of echinocereus will survive unprotected in a cold wet environment (like zone 5b or 6a)? I know some cholla and many prickly pears will survive. Any one ever tried in these zones? I cover my claret cup and small barrel cacti but I'm thinking about uncovering the claret cup to see what happens.


Jeff
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Post by DesertZone »

My guess is they would need sharp drainage, but that is about all I have too add. :)
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hardyjim
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Post by hardyjim »

They can begin to rot at the (growth)point where the sticker/thorns emerge if snow or water sit on top.

Most of the truly hardy barrels shed their water before winter some how...
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cuja1
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Post by cuja1 »

O.k. thanks guys.
Jeff
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Paul Ont
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Post by Paul Ont »

None of my cacti are protected, they get full sun all summer (at least 6 hours of direct sun) and have very sharp drainage. I have the following species of Echinocereus growing in Eastern Ontario, Canada USDA 4b/5a:

E. triglochidiatus (many forms)
E. fendlerii
E. rechenbachii (many forms)
E. viridiflorus (VERY hardy)
E. coccineus
E. engelmanii v. variegatus

There are others that are 'half-hardy' here unprotected, but they tend to fail after a few years. Also, you should probably treat with fungicide in the fall and spring if you leave them unprotected, this will reduce the mortality. Things like Pediocactus and Escobaria are a little more robust to winter wet. However, Pediocactus will tend to rot out if you have too many humid nights about 20C or so.
cuja1
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Post by cuja1 »

That's what I was wanting to hear! Thank you Paul.
Jeff
Cameron_z6a_N.S.
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Post by Cameron_z6a_N.S. »

Jeff, everyone's given you some great info here. A general rule is that the wetter the location, the sharper the drainage has to be (or start considering the cacti as being less hardy to colder temps). If I was to plant a zone 4 cactus species here without any overhead protection, I would grow it as if it was hardy to zone 5/6, since my location is so rainy.
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