Cacti and Succulents, an Introduction by Ian Thwaites

Our June Zoom meeting was Cacti and Succulents, an Introduction, presented by Ian Thwaites who is an award winning professional plant and garden photographer and also Chairman of the British Cacti and Succulent Society.


His beautiful photos were certainly an inspiration to anyone thinking of growing cacti which are proving very popular at the moment.  There are many different forms and they are easy to care for, requiring a well drained compost and good light.

Ian suggested using John Innes with added grit or perlite.

Leaving the plants to thoroughly dry before watering again is recommended. Ian waters his in the shower!


There is so much texture and colour and different forms available and children would enjoy some little cacti as an introduction to gardening, indeed in Holland cacti are a traditional Mother’s Day gift.


Ian leaves his plants dry through the winter with water gradually introduced in spring.  He also leaves his Christmas cacti outdoors in summer.

The globular forms flower more often.


Most garden centres sell cacti but there are online retailers who have a huge selection so there is plenty of opportunity to try your hand at growing these fascinating plants.