This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V23", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
We have often wondered why our numerous species of hardy Cactuses are not more often seen in American gardens. A rock garden of cactaceous plants would be an unique feature in a well kept garden Thoughts like these are again revived by the following from the London Journal of Horticulture, which is referring to an exhibition in London: "One of the most interesting collections of plants out of the competitive classes was the group of hardy cactaceous plants exhibited by E. G. Loder, Esq., all of which had been collected by himself in the Rocky Mountains at an elevation of 10,000 feet and more. A large number of specimens were contributed, many being in flower, and all in excellent health. The two most attractive were Echinocactus Fendleri, with large, bright rosy flowers, and E. gonacanthus, with bright orange blooms; but the others having chiefly pink flowers were also noteworthy. The species of Echinocactus were E. Simpsoni, E. phoeniceus, E. viridiflorus, E. viviparus, and E. paucispinus; the Opuntias represented being O. Comanchica, O. Whipplei, O. Missouriensis, and O. arborescens.
For the rockery and similar positions these plants are well adapted; and as they are from regions where the temperature at some periods of the year falls very low, they would no doubt prove hardy in any district of England, their chief enemy being excessive moisture." Like so many things relating to America which appear in European serials, the facts are not strictly correct. All the list were certainly not collected at an "elevation of 10,000 feet" or in "the Rocky Mountains." But we may say that nearly all named have been under culture near Philadelphia, and found to be as hardy as Mr. Loder finds them in England. Besides those named, may be added to the list Opuntia Rufinesqui, O. vulgaris and O. oplocarpa; Echinocereus conoideus and Mamillaria Missouriensis, called also in some collections M, Nuttallii.
Since it is known that quite a large list of species will endure a considerable amount of frost, and that all kinds do well planted out in summer time, there is some attention being given to them in American gardening. Haage & Schmidt's Catalogue has drawings of a number of species.