In my first week of coming to Cambridge, or rather the first week of living in my flat, I spent a good deal of time in Garden centres buying enough greenery to hide the fact I had no furniture. One little purchase was a silly cactus in a small Glass pot with coloured sand. Well this little plant survived very well. It outgrow the very small pot it came in, and about 4 months ago I decided it really deserved a proper pot. This proved more difficult than I initially thought as first I had to literally smash the glass pot to remove the plant, and the sand inside was so hard, that I needed a chisel to remove most of it. I replanted it with a layer of gravel, pure soil with a bit of compost (from the garden composter), a 50:50 mix of sand and soil, and finally a layer of sand.
So far so good, except following this pretty rough treatment the cactus did not fair well at all. Initially it was in the kitchen, but I eventually moved it into my office which gets more sun. However, it continued to deteriorate. The stems drooped enough to hit the floor, and were were covered in brown rot. Ouch, the poor thing. I finally moved it downstairs into the warmest spot in the house, and then went away for three weeks. Well I’m happy to say that it’s recovered, and is looking the best it’s ever done.
The stems are very upright, and there’s a lot of new growth! Excellent. Let’s hope it lives for another five years!