Sunday, July 2, 2017

Cactus & Succulent Market in Essen 2017 (11 pics)

Yesterday I went to this year's Cactus & Succulent Market in Essen. No, "I went" sounds too casual. It was a 10 hour train ride, thanks to the terrible service of the Deutsche Bahn. In the end I could spend only 2 hours at the fair but it was SO worth it! Oh how I wished I could spend the whole day there... But hey, I arrived home within the same day, unlike last time, so that's good. 

Unfortunately I didn't have time to check it out in all detail. I spent most of my time chatting at the Mesemb stand. How wonderful it is to actually talk to someone about our hobby! If only I lived closer to places where other growers live or such events take place. I was so excited I was mostly mumbling or talking gibberish because I wanted to include so many topics into the conversation. And I loved every bit of it. Also, I realized, while always communicating in writing I often don't know how to actually pronounce names of people and plants properly. That was slightly embarrassing but exciting at the same time, just like everything else there.

I went out in the rain to try and take pictures of the rest of the fair which was not very productive. Please check out my 2014 and 2015 reports for better view on what is normally going on there.

So here is this wonderful place I am talking about.
Looking at the pictures, there are so many plants I would have liked to take home with me.

Not many conophytums. I think, I was too late. Still took 6 plants home.

The other stands were mostly for cacti.

This one was interesting but I didn't have time to check it out.

And here are my purchases. I'll post better pictures next time.

Discovered this little monster on one of the stands.

I also got one Ariocarpus, even though I don't grow cacti. Ariocarpus is one that visually fits very well with my collection, I thought, so I'll try growing it.


  1. Replies
    1. I was! Wished it would happen more often... and closer to my home.

  2. I love mutants!!!
    Also, my delospermas are overtaking their patch.

    1. A friend told me that plant looks like a croissant. It kinda does :)
      Congrats on your happy Delospermas!

    2. Wait, did you buy the mutant? Please tell me you bought it.
      If you bought it, name it croissant.

    3. Of course I bought it :)
      It will probably look normal after the next leaf change but until then it can be called croissant ;)

  3. There's nothing better than a cactus and other succulent sale. Of course, when you have limited growing space, it really puts your priorities to the test. Thanks for the photos. So, now you have a cactus, an ariocarpus no less. Very nice plant. Interestingly, in Europe cacti are favored, while here in the states the non-cacti succulents are more popular, especially those in the Crassula family. And, here in the states most of the cacti growers are men. Not sure if that means anything psychologically. Very few mesemb growers in the states, and most of them are in California.

    I hope you are thoroughly enjoying your new plants. Do you keep any type of records on your plants? I keep records of the plants I intend to try to keep in what I call my permanent collection. I also try and take photos on a regular basis and attach to the records. It's not perfect but I can often look up a plant and find out where it came from and when I first obtained it (or planted the seed). Of course it helps now that I don't have to go to work everyday.

    Hope you are enjoying your summer. You know, after readying your blog, I always want to go work with my plants. ^__^ That's where I am going right now.....Bye

    1. It was a wonderful experience. Thank you. I feel so lucky having able to visit. Maybe this year I will finally make it to Blankenberge, Belgium (ELK). But I probably couldn't take this much excitement :D

      I didn't know other succulents were so popular in the US. Here it feels like indeed cacti are favored. And, yes, almost all the growers are (older) men for which I really can not find a reason. Do you have an idea why? I see many young women (like myself hohoho) online interested in succulents. But maybe they lose interest quickly or turn to garden variety plants after some time while men stay faithful to cacti for decades? Or maybe men are more handy with greenhouse building while women have to use windowsills and can not develop their collection as well as they would like to XD

      I have 2 excel spreadsheets. One for adult plants, the other for seedlings. I keep all names, catalog numbers, localities, sources and dates of when I got the plant or when the seeds were sowed. I take thousands of photos and make sure to name each in a correct way. All plants which could be mistaken for others (like some conos or anacamps) are carefully labeled on the side of a pot. To make sure I also take pictures of newcomers with their own labels in front of the plants.

      Hope you are enjoying summer too and use your bike as much as you can :) I wished I could come with you and help you work with your plants. What a wonderful day it would be.