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The Beaver Tale June 2007

Meeting Date/Time

June 7th
7:00 p.m.

Meetings are held the first

Thursday of each month in the
Garden Club center at Lorenzi
Park, located at the corner of
Washington & Twin Lakes Drive

Members with initials

Please bring refreshments

CCSSN Planed Events

June- Springs Preserve Opens

July – No meeting

August – California

September – Cactus Fest

Note From the President

Greetings again. Spring is a great time of year to live in southern Nevada, but as we
get into mid May most of the cactus flowers whither and fade and we confront those
triple-digit temperatures that define summer in Las Vegas. Speaking of hot, the hot
event coming up for those of us who share a love of gardening and plants is the
long-awaited opening of the Las Vegas Springs Preserve (LVSP) on June 8th, the
day after our monthly meeting.

I hope you will be joining us that Thursday evening, across the street from the LVSP
at the Garden Center in Lorenzi Park. We have a number of new members to
welcome and Victor, our VP and Programs Chair, has lined up an outstanding
speaker/presenter who will be doing a show-and-tell on growing cactus from seeds.
It will be something different and educational as well as entertaining, I'm sure. The
program will begin at 7 p.m. following our monthly Board meeting at 6 p.m., which
you are also welcome to attend.

One of the things we need to finalize at the meeting in June are some possible
summer field trips. Based on the membership response at the last meeting, we, the
Board, have decided to skip a possible trip to Arizona in June and put all our eggs in
one basket, so to speak, and make plans for a trip to Southern California in August.
This August trip is tentatively set for 18-19 August, departing early Saturday morning
and returning Sunday night. The plan is to attend the 22nd Annual Intercity Cactus
Show and Sale at the LA County Arboretum and Botanic Garden in Arcadia as well
as visit the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Morino, CA. The club will provide
the transportation in the form of a 47-passenger coach. The only cost to members
will be one night at a motel and any meals and admission fees. Other club events
being considered for this summer are local, to include a tour of the Springs Preserve,
a BBQ in the garden, and a members’ gardens tour. You need to come to the
June meeting so you can give us your input on all these happenings. And if you
haven't already, check us out on our web site:

Phil Lawton
P.S. Don't forget to bring a plant to the meeting for our own version of show 'n tell.
There will be a prize for the ugliest plant. No, not really, but that might be a contest I
could win :-)

CSSSN Officers are listed on our web site’s “About Us link”

Our three advertising members are also listed. Follow the links to Turner-Greenhouse, Calplants,
and The Tomato Lady. Check out other informative links there as well.
Please send newsletter items to by the 20th of the month.
Try communicating with members of the club by signing up and using our yahoo group:
Species of note:

Euphorbia caput-medusae is the classic

Medusoid Euphorbia
Tom Glavich species. It is from Cape Province, with a
caudex of up to 8 inches in diameter. The
branches are long and serpentine. It’s the
The Medusoid Euphorbias are easily
most snake-like of all the species.
identified. A (usually) large body is covered
with arms. The arms may be stubby and
Euphorbia decepta is from Cape Province
widely spaced (euphorbia decepta), or they
South Africa. The caudex is 2 to 4 inches
may be long, snake-like and closely spaced
thick, and the branches generally less than an
(euphorbia caput-medusae). For all of the
inch long. In habitat, the branches are
Medusoid Euphorbias, the central thickened
deciduous, but in cultivation they stay on the
stem is equivalent to a caudex. It is the
plant all year. Seedlings of this plant look like
central storage region, and can act as a
World War ll floating mines.
reservoir for nutrients and moisture in times of
stress. Many of the Medusoids will shed their
Euphorbia flanaganii is one of the most
arms (branches) during extended droughts,
common and easily grown of the medusoids.
regrowing new ones when the rains return.
The central caudex is generally two or three
inches across. It grows quickly, offsets
Medusoid Euphorbias come from a wide
readily, and can rapidly fill a large bowl with
range of habitats, with Cape Province, South
medusoid plants.
Africa being Medusoid central; but all go
through extended periods of low moisture.
Euphorbia fortuita comes from Ladismith in
Cultivation for many is relatively easy; as long
Cape Province. It has a tuberous main root
as attention is paid to not watering during
that merges into the main caudex, and stiff
periods of dormancy. There are generally two
cylindrical branches usually about 4 inches
periods of dormancy, a long one during the
long, but occasionally one will be twice as
late fall and winter (mid November through
the end of February) and a shorter one during
the peak of the summer heat (a few weeks in
Euphorbia fusca, will produce secondary
August and September). The arrival of the
heads quickly. These can be removed to start
summer one is harder to predict, and over-
new plants.
watering in late summer can result in root rot.
In spit of the sensitivity, most of the Medusoid
Euphorbia gorgonis is another species from
Euphorbias do well as unprotected pot plants
Cape Province near Grahamstown. The
outdoors in Southern California during the
caudex is mostly subterranean. It has short
tuberculate branches that turn red in strong
It’s nearly impossible to find seed for most of
the Medusoid euphorbias; in general, the
Euphorbia woodii is from Natal, but similar
seed is short lived (months). Vegetative
to Euphorbia flanaganii in appearance. Most
propagation is easier. Most Medusoid
of the caudex and a large turnip like root are
euphorbias can be propagated from arm
cuttings, although an extended period will be
required before the plant is worth showing.

Cactus points as of May How Points are earned
Jan-April May
Alsobrook, Ronald Attend Board meeting as a member of
Askew, Dick 45 15
Askew, Liz 55 20
the Board or invited club member
Bailey, Holly 30 0
Bernikow, Iris 80 15 Come early or stay late and help with
Betzler, Joey 60 20
Bishop, H.C. set up or clean up.
Brenner, Marilyn 45 10
Brenner, Michael 45 10
Brown, Audrey
Put on a program or become involved
Cadette, Don 60 15 with doing something extra special at
Cadette, Jeannie 75 15 the meeting.
Campbell, Ken 30 10
Cole, Mary Ann
Deadrich, Paul 45 10 Make a contribution to the newsletter
Doyle, Leslie 5
Duncombe, Pete 60 10
and/or web site.
Dutch, Irma 45 10
Furtek, Bob 30 10 Show up at monthly meetings.
Fusaro, Mindy
Fusaro, Pat
Garcia, Tom 75 15 One of the year end rewards is a paid-
Garrett, Paula 40 10
Holmes, Rick 30
up membership to the Springs
Horvitz, Tom Preserve: a family membership for our
Hupy, Rusty 15 Gold winners and an individual
Jones, Susan 20
Kent, Susan 55 25 membership for our Silver winners.
Kleinman, Mary
Kleinman, Sol
Korabell, Stan 10
Lawton, Mary 30 10
Lawton, Phil 85 20 If you wish to save the club .41cents
Lesley, Ramona 25 Postage plus the cost of printing
Lindsey, Miranda
Lindsey, Victor 50
please e-mail Liz at
Lynch, Bob 50 10
Nietling, Jay 30
Norton, John 20
Pedigo, Mark 50
Peters, Jim 20 “Yesterday is history
Pierce, Jim 40 Tomorrow is a mystery
Radcliff, Gunde 20
Russo, Paul N/A 10
Today is a gift
Schulz, William That is why it is called
Shaw, Barbara 20 The present”
Sheets, Mary 55 15
Shoaff, Steve 25
Siegfried, Rhett (thanks Mary )
Sinclair, Thomas
Steinline, Travis 10
Teppen, Bev 10 10
Thomas, Stephanie 55 10
Turner, Dave 35
Turner, Kris 20
Valenti, Sam 75 15
White, Christopher N/A 10
Zeitlan, Steve 15
“Freeze Hardy Opuntia from the U.S.A.”
KAKTUSY , Special 2004/2; Author: Ivana Richter, ISSN 0862-4372
Periodical Review by Susan Kent

WOW! “Freezehardy Opuntia from the U.S.A.” Given our past very cold winter, this is an
appropriate topic! Ivana Richter, Germany, and her German and USA associates
published this quality issue of KAKTUSY back in 2004. It’s too bad that many of us failed
to see it before the Southern Nevada winter of 2006/7. Their work was published by the
Czech and Slowak Society of Cacti a & Succulent Growers. This special edition of the
KAKTUSY Journal is available from Rainbow Gardens Bookshop. See the link on our
website, You might do well to have a copy of this handy reference.

The journal credits significant articles and subject matter experts for further reading and
reference in the preface as well as on the back inside cover (some are in English). The
first few pages discuss, in general terms, TRYING TO GROW freeze hardy opuntias in
European cold humid climates. Throughout the remainder of the issue, plants are identified
and reviewed by geographic region of the U.S.A. Excellent photos accompany many of the
selections. Some of us might want to take the challenge to locate some of the specific
plant material and test it in our landscapes. We may need to find and verify the specimens
in the native habitat as well as in cultivation.

With the publisher’s permission, the following is a clip about one of the several O. basilaris,
our logo plant, and was taken directly from the periodical. Other relevant freeze hardy
plants to our locale are discussed as well, but seeing a “Beaver Tail” in the Czech
publication was worth a reprint! You’ll have to read the entire thing to find the rest of the
freeze hardy jewels.