NIGHT BLOOMING CEREUS
It didn't grow very fast at first but before long it began developing new pads. I had to treat it for some kind of cottony bug things but it snapped out of it and continued to grow. I wondered how soon it would have flowers.
Each year I put it out on the back deck along with all my Orchid cactus. They all thrived in the fresh air and a little sun. New branches grew. After four years the Cereus was beginning to look rather ugly. Well actually it looked very ugly. Some of the stems grew over four feet long, whipped around like a giant rat tail and turned a brownish color. They looked like dead sticks. I was disappointed but determined the thing was going to bloom for me someday so I kept watering and fertilizing, packing it into my little cottage in the fall and back out to the back deck in the late spring, and it's heavy! Six years and no flowers. I thought about dumping this dud into the compost but something told me to 'hang in there.' See her above at 7 years old taking over the window. Show off!
One day about a month ago while I was watering I noticed some little red bumps beginning to develop along the sides of a couple of those ugly dead stick like branches. I wondered.... could it be? YES! YES! YES!!!!! She has buds. 14 of them! I watched them so carefully you would think they were my babies. In a way, they were. Then the nights turned cold as they do here in the Pacific Northwest come fall, and I had to bring all the plants in. Unfortunately the shock made 13 of the little buds drop off. I was so disappointed I gathered them up as they fell and considered a funeral. My heart was so heavy! One bud clung tight to the ugly mama and grew. I really wanted so much to see what it would look like when it bloomed, if it did.
Notice the times and date on the pictures.
September 13, 10:21 PMIn fact I was so excited I was giddy and forgot to use my macro lens correctly. Thank goodness I still got several pictures of this rare beauty. The blossom was big and had a mildly sweet fragrance.
September 13 10:21 pm
September 14 9:17 am
Dying but still beautiful
September 14 5:53pm
I wonder if it will bloom next year and how many flowers it might have, I know that none will ever be a beautiful or special as this first one.|