“Bob Grimshaw, an Epicactus

Created by Wressey Cocke

“Bob Grimshaw” is the name given to an epicactus which was apparently first created by Wressey Cocke.  The origins of the Bob Grimshaw is from the website shown below, along with the quotation describing the origins

BOB GRIMSHAW – Another multi-petaled flower from Wressey Cocke. Deep scarlet red inner petals have a wide ring of bright fuchsia. Over 80 narrow petals. Opens wide.

[Source: http://www.graydavisepies.com/7.html]

It is not known at this time why the name “Bob Grimshaw” was selected for this plant.


Webpage Credits

“Bob Grimshaw” Images

James Horsfield’s Website on Epiphytic Plants

Wressley Cocke’s Epicactus Creations


Webpage Credits

Thanks go to James Horsfield for creating a very thorough website on epiphytes that has served as a very informative source for this webpage.

“Bob Grimshaw” Images

Two photos of the “Bob Grimshaw” epicactus found on the internet are shown below. They appear to be slightly different versions of the same original photograph.

Source: http://www.graydavisepies.com/7.html 

Source: http://cgi.ebay.com
Seller 9234Terry, Demorest, GA

James Horsfield’s Website on Epiphytic Plants

James Horsfield’s website includes descriptions of several varieties (not including the “Bob Grimshaw”) of epiphytes created by Wressley Cocke. The website can be found at:


Mr. Horsfield describes his website as follows:

This E-book was authorized by James Horsfield for everyone that enjoys epiphytic plants. If you would like to contribute information, (photographs or interesting notes) please, send an Email to Jim. If the information is deemed useful it will be added to the book.

The E-book is shown below on this webpage, followed by a description of epiphyte varieties that show several of Wresley Cocke’s creations (not including the “Bob Grimshaw”, however!)

James Horfield’s website includes the following photo of a garden of epipytes:

The table of contents and text of Mr. Horsfield’s website are given below.


Chapter One
What are Epiphytes?
From Where Do Epiphytes Come?
What Is a Rainforest?
How Do Epiphytes Survive?
What is Leaf Variegation?

Chapter Two
Improving the Plants Vitality
Plant Maintenance

Chapter Three
Plant Hygiene
Pests, weed juice, herb teas, detergent spray, cooking oil mixture
Common Insect Pests, and their Remedies.
Disease Remedies.

Chapter Four
Plant Identification.
Plant Families, Their Genera, and species
To Which Family Does Your Plant Belong.

Chapter Five
List of Plant Families.

Chapter Six
Glossary Index


What are Epiphytes?

This book is about growing epiphytic plants as a hobby, so to begin with, what is an epiphyte? To describe it, an epiphyte is a plant that does not normally grow its roots in the ground, but uses them to anchor itself to another plant or rock. It can be found clinging to its support by aerial roots. Often, these plants have a root, stem, and leaf system that only suit life in their own specialised environment. They quickly run into problems when planted into soil.

These plants may receive their nourishment from the atmosphere or from debris lodged around the roots. In some specialised species they can absorb nutrients through their leaves. Although, a most important point to remember is, these plants are never parasitic, so will do no harm to the trees onto which we plant them.

From Where Do Epiphytes Come?

In dense rainforests most small plants do not survive on the ground, this is because the dense canopy does not let enough light through. Therefor, these specialised plants grow high up in the trees where they can receive the correct amount of light. Often, rainforests have different layers of vegetation. Some rainforests have as many as five separate canopies, each with its own layer of epiphytic plants suitable to that particular light intensity.

In lowland rainforests, botanists have estimated that a quarter of all the plant species may be epiphytic. Moreover, epiphytic species in montane rainforests could be even higher due to the moisture content of the air. Nevertheless, some epiphytes come from drier regions. We can find these plants in trees with an open canopy. Occasionally, a species can be found growing in dry, arid areas. Sometimes, they can be perched on desert cacti.

What Is a Rainforest?

The German botanist Schimper first used the title rainforest in 1898. He contrived the name to describe forests that grow in constant wet conditions. As a result, this term is now used to describe forests that receive more than 2,000 millimetres (80-inches) of rain spread throughout the year. Also, the tree canopy is closed, letting little light penetrate to the surface of the ground. These rainforests occur in temperate, and tropical regions of the world.

The altitude divides rainforests into two main groups: lowland, and montane forest. Lowland areas contain the most extensive range of plant, and animal life. It has a canopy that is usually higher, and less even, and most epiphytic plants can be found growing high up in this canopy. Montane rainforests are not as tall as lowland forests, and the canopy height is much
more even. The temperature drops about 1.8o Celsius (2.25Fahrenheit) for every 300-metres (1,000-feet) in height, this creates a colder climate. Adding to the problem of height is the poorer soil conditions, and a more unpredictable rainfall. These are the main factors that stunt the trees.

Botanists divide these two types of forests into a variety of groups depending on the soil conditions: certain areas flood easily, others drain away quickly. Some are acid, and others are alkaline. We can term many mangrove forests as rainforests.

Cloud forests are usually areas above 1,000-metres that makes them part of the montane rainforest. They have a high, year-round rainfall, at this altitude the weather is cooler, this usually stunts the trees. Mosses, and other epiphytes are many. Rocky areas are common, and lithophytes are in abundance.

Tableland rainforests usually range from 500 to 1,000-metres (1650 to 3300-feet). The area is slightly undulating, but deep gorges or canyons caused by rivers often appear, making travel through the area more difficult.

How Do Epiphytes Survive?

Different types of epiphytes have different ways of survival: some ferns, such as types of Platycerium can attach themselves to vertical tree trunks. Two different types of leaves develop: roundish, infertile leaves, which are responsible for holding the plant to the tree, while the upper part of these leaves, fan out to form a catchment area for debris, sometimes providing secondary homes for other small plants. Then fertile fronds have a totally different shape, and are there for reproduction purposes. Other plants: including some species of orchids, and cacti, start life in the fork of a tree. These plants form their own food traps with many roots, and stems. Tree branches often help to hold these plants in position. Ferns such as Davallia, have creeping stolons that hug the surface of the tree branches. Often, they creep long distances, totally encircling the host plant limb. Many types of epiphytic plants have very thick, strong root systems, which cling to the surface, and surround the branch. Some species of epiphytes, such as Schlumbergera, when grown in a general potting mix, produce roots that are soft, and friable. These same plants growing as epiphytes, have strong, wiry roots. Strong enough to hold the plant in place. Many orchids grow strong, thick roots that attach to the branch or rock surface like glue. Orchid growers know all too well that they can badly damage orchid roots if they try to take them out of a terra cotta pot. Also, certain bromeliads have strong anchor roots that grow from a creeping stolon. These roots do not normally provide enough food for the plant, as they are mostly used to anchor it to the host. Instead of using roots to feed, the plant has leaves that form a vase-shaped water catchment area. The water becomes polluted with dead insects, decaying leaves, and mosquito larvae. It then digests this organic soup by slow absorption through the leaves, with help from special absorption scales.

A few plants start life in the soil, and grow as a vine. These plants climb the highest trees, producing roots from the sides of the stems or stem joints as they grow. We know these roots as adventitious roots. Later, living in the ground becomes unsuitable because of grazing animals, or the ground becomes waterlogged or another type of damage occurs, so the bases of the plants are lost. Nevertheless, these plants continue to grow with the aid of their new root systems. Therefore the vines become epiphytes as in the genus Heliocereus, and Hylocereus.

In contrast, other plants start life high in the trees as a true epiphyte. These plants grow from seed that birds have transferred there, the plant roots growing very quickly down to ground level. At this stage it becomes so large, and strong that it often chokes the host tree. Once the roots reach the ground it becomes a terrestrial plant, as happens with the Strangler Figs.

Some epiphytes prefer to live only with the host plant, tolerating only a few other types of epiphytes. Such plants are the Myrmecodia, and the Hydnophytum that provide a home for vicious ants inside their caudex. These ants attack any insect or animal that comes near the plant. Also, they clean the area of other unwanted epiphytes that may grow in competition with these epiphytes. In return for the protection, the plant provides a home, and nectar for the ants. Only a few types of other epiphytes coexist with this Ant Plant. The ants tolerate some members of the genus Dischidia, because they have a similar arrangement for the ants, as the Ant Plant does. Dischidia major has the common name of Rattle Skulls, possessing hollow leaves that ants will enter. We can see Dischidia nummularia, and Dischidia ovata hanging over Ant Plants in long festoons in comparative safety. The ants do no harm to them.

What is Leaf Variegation?

When we have more than one colour in a leaf, we use the term variegation. These variegations are well known as they occur in many bromeliads, and in other families too. It may be horizontal striping or blotching of the leaves. Colour changes to the leaves at flowering time are termed variegations. These kinds of variegations are natural, and considerably stable. Nevertheless, a virus that enters the soft meristematic tissue may cause other types of variegations: such as white, yellow or pink vertical striping or blotching in the leaves. Meristematic tissue consists of cells that are multiplying rapidly. Once the virus has entered the cell it causes mutations, now stopping the cell from producing chlorophyll. This virus problem can slow the plants growth, or even stop the plant from reaching its full size at maturity. In its natural environment the disease may be terminal, or it may grow out of it. The plant either avoids living with the problem, or reduces the effect the virus has on its growth. If new shoots emerge from a virus-free area, they most likely will outgrow the infected part, and take over the plant. The virus infected variegations are usually unstable, and usually not transmitted by seed.

Seeing a virus infected type of variegation in plant collections is common, as the colours can be quite outstanding. If we are to keep the leaf colour, we must cut off any stems that the plant produces without the variegation. When we use vegetative propagation to increase our stock, remembering what part of the plant is contaminated with the virus is important. When taking leaf cuttings, the stems, and roots often appear from the base of the leaf joint, and from the internal part of the leaf stalk. If this area does not contain the virus, the new plant will not be variegated.


Improving the Plants Vitality

Most epiphytes are easy to grow if we provide some simple
requirements. Consider its natural environment from the plant identification
section (Chapter Four) of this book. If we can provide similar requirements,
we should have success in growing the plants.

Plants are subject to many environmental problems in their natural habitat. These are often very traumatic. They include drought, storms, temperature, and sunlight, also interaction with insects, and animals. These factors are rarely the best conditions for optimum growth. It is only a place that the plant can survive competition with other plants. By knowing how it survives in its habitat, we can improve the plants living conditions at home. We can create a microclimate, that is, create an artificial climate in a small area. This microclimate can be in a greenhouse, shade house or outdoors. We can mimic the best parts of the natural climate. In this way we can improve the health of the plants, and the speed of their growth.

It is a false premise that tropical, and subtropical plants grow best in the places they are found in nature. In northern Europe , and in North America , frost, and snow occur, and daylight is at a minimum in winter. Yet tropical plants are grown faster, cleaner, and more profitably than anywhere in the tropics. The reason is that the indoor environment is closed to harmful amounts of moisture, and insects. We can also control light intensities, and competition with other plants for food. Also, we can regulate the temperature in a greenhouse. If plants can be grown in such an environment, and thrive so well, it shows that anyone can grow top quality plants easily wherever they are.

Plant Maintenance

The three major steps to remember in preserving the epiphytes health, and growth are:

1 feed the plant often, and give only very small amounts,
2 ensure the atmosphere is not too dry or too wet for too long,
3 with epiphytic plants, be certain that the roots have plenty of fresh air around them.


Plant Hygiene.

Just keeping a plant clean of dust, and insects will help it to grow. The tough leaves of many plants such as some bromeliads, orchids, species of philodendron, and many others need to keep their leaves free of dust, and grime. Spraying the leaves with water can accomplish this, or wiping with a damp sponge. By keeping the plant clean, it can react more favourably to the light that it receives, breath better through the pores, and look a lot brighter. Many people clean the leaves of house plants with a white oil spray that gives the leaves a shiny appearance. This is not a good practice for the plant because it may block up the stomata or breathing pores in the leaf. If this plant must have a shiny leaf, use a little milk on a soft cloth, and wipe it gently over the surface. This will do the plant a lot less damage. We should not clean plants by wiping with a sponge or cloth if they have a white bloom or absorption scales on the surface. We should only use a simple spraying of water to clean them. Also, wash out bromeliads that hold water in their cups at least once a week, replacing the old liquid with clean water.

Pests can be troublesome at times. With house plants the pests are usually small, and we can notice them before they develop into plague proportions. If pests have started to increase on our house plants, we would be wise not to use insecticide on them indoors. It would be better if we take the plant outside if we have to use sprays that are harmful to man. When we use poison sprays in a confined space, such as a greenhouse, a warm day to work can be chosen. Next, open all ventilators in the greenhouse. Always use protective clothing, and breathing masks designed for the job. A dust mask is not suitable. Chemicals in the air are much finer than dust particles, and will pass through a dust mask.

We can eradicate pests from our plants with reasonable safety to ourselves, and the environment, if we take the time to search for a safe method. Below are a small group of menus that will take care of most of our insect pest problems.

Weed Juice is a simple home made product that we can use as an insect repellant. We can use this repellant rather than use expensive, and possibly dangerous insecticides. In the garden, when we find pests that may be breeding out of control, we often notice weeds that are untouched by these insect pests. These weeds have something inside them that make the weed immune to the insect pests. Gather these weeds, and wash, and place them in a food juicer. Preferably, use a juicer that has been set aside for garden use. After juicing the weeds, mix the weed juice with the same volume of water, and spray some on your plants. The plants we want to grow will now be immune to the insect pests, at least until the repellant is washed off. This method also works on indoor plants. Many different types of plants work as repellants on different types of insect pests.

Herb Teas are similar in many ways to weed juice, but their preparation is different. Herb teas can be substitutes for weed juice if we do not have a spare food juicer. A good general recipe for this brew is to collect the weeds or fast growing herbs that the insect pests do not attack. Place in a pan, and cover them with water, bring to the boil then simmer for two minutes. Strain off, and use this water as a plant tea. Dilute the tea with four times its volume of water, use immediately.

Detergent Spray is usable on individual plants or the whole garden. Mix 1 litre (13/4 pints) of water with a teaspoon of concentrated dish-washing detergent. Shake well, and spray on the plants.

Cooking oil mixture will control many sap sucking insects, but it is harmless to most predators. Mix 300-millilitres (1/2-pint) of water with the same volume of cooking oil, to this, add a quarter of a teaspoon of concentrated dish-washing detergent. Store this mixture until ready for use. When using this mixture as a spray, dilute it down with four times its volume of water. Shake the container well before use.

Common Insect Pests, and their Remedies

Ants themselves are not usually a problem, unless they build their nests inside the plant pot. These insects often cause problems with their farming habits. The ants carry aphids, and scale insects from plant to plant. They feed on the honey dew that is produce by these sap suckers. Then, these ants spill some of this honey dew on the stems, and trample it down the sides of our plants. A fungal disease known as sooty mould develops in this honey dew. However, if we deter these ants from going on our plants, we will also deter this fungus disease.

To control these ants, mix a little borax with a tablespoon of honey, look for the trail of ants heading home, and place the mix in blobs along the track. The ants will take the honey, and borax home to the queen, and the nest is finished. This chemical Borax or sodium tetra borate is an alkaline product, when ants eat it, it reacts with formic acid inside it. When borax, and formic acid mix, it forms gas. As an ant cannot pass flatulence, gas swells up internally, and the insect explodes. If the nest is found, an alternative is to spray it with pyrethrum or garlic laced with white pepper. This mixture will destroy the nest.

Maybe, we only want to discourage these little creatures from bringing their farm insects to our plants. If so, place bone meal around the base of each plant. Alternatively spray the plant with weed juice or herb tea made from either tansy, pennyroyal, geranium or southernwood.

Aphids are plant lice that suck the sap out of new growth, and flower buds. These pests may be either green, yellow, black or red. Although they usually infest outdoor plants, they can be found in greenhouses, and even on plants indoors. In warm weather they breed extremely quickly, giving birth to live young. In the autumn, as the weather becomes colder, they lay eggs that hatch when the weather warms up in spring. Spring, and autumn is the time the aphids are born with wings to aid in their dispersal to other plants.

To rid our plants of aphids, mix a detergent spray as mentioned above. Shake the bottle, and spray every visible part of the infected plants. As the detergent dries, the aphids skin cracks, and they die. If we have to use insecticide, spray with pyrithrin or maldison. Our main problem with insecticide is that it is not selective, and it also kills their natural enemies.

Use of biological control against aphids is very effective: ladybirds, and their larvae devour as many as they can catch. The aphids honey dew also attracts lacewing flies, and not only do they eat the aphids, but they lay their eggs on the plant. The larvae spend their adolescent life eating all the aphids they can catch. Small parasitic wasps use the aphids as hosts for their young. The eggs of the wasp are laid inside the aphids soft body, when they hatch they eat their hosts inner parts. Hoverfly larvae spend their immature life eating aphids, and other pests. Praying mantis nymphs, and adults will eat as many aphids as they can grab. If we are fortunate enough to have them in our area, assassin bugs will clean up most of the aphids, and other pests as well.

Caterpillars can devour large sections of our plants in a very short period. If only a few caterpillars are on our plants, hand picking is probably the easiest method. Also, we can sprinkle pepper on the wet leaves. Pepper washes off easily, and does not damage the plants. With a larger collection we may miss many of them, so mix weed juice or a herb tea made from garlic, and lace it with pepper. If we have vegetables growing near our collection, they may attract butterflies or moths. It would benefit our collections to spray these plants as well, but make sure we make up the recipe for weed juice only from edible plants. Finely sifted flour puffed onto the plants will also kill caterpillars on vegetables. Spread over the surface of the leaves on a dry day, fine flour will block up their breathing pores. They will suffocate, and fall of their branch.

Natural predators of caterpillars are many: hoverfly larvae eat caterpillar eggs. Braconid wasp parasites lay their eggs inside caterpillars, killing them before they can reach their adult stage. Paper wasps catch, and kill caterpillars. They, then go back to their paper nests, regurgitate their food, and feed the young in the nests. Birds will search for, and clean up as many as they can find. Hornets will catch, sting, and carry caterpillars back to their nests. Lizards, like birds, will devour as many as they can hold.

Cockroaches are probably the most hated pests that we can have in the house. We fear them because people associate this insect with dirt, and bad hygiene. Although it is not a plant pest, we do not want to bring them into our homes riding on our plants. Good hygiene is not enough to rid ourselves of this pest, as it is a master at hiding in dark places where access is almost impossible.

Cockroaches are tropical insects. So if we live in a cold environment we can turn off all heaters, this includes our hot water system. Let our home become really cold for a short while in winter. Frost kills cockroaches. If this is not practical, Mix up this simple cockroach bate:
1. one tablespoon of baking powder,
2. five-hundred grams (1 pound) of cooked mashed potatoes. Mix, and roll out to pencil thickness, and place on brown paper. Place this bate in a dark area for the cockroaches to find. Placing in a food cupboard is safe enough if these pests frequent the area, but remember, it will attract them to their death. Baking powder has approximately 35% sodium bicarbonate. When they take the bicarbonate internally, it is mixed with moisture, and turns to gas. This gas builds up in the cockroach until it explodes.

Grasshoppers, and locusts are close relatives, and eat almost anything that is green, often taking chunks out of our favourite plants. These pests breed very quickly in warm weather, and are hard to control. We can mix flour, and water to a thin, runny mixture. Then we spray the area that they frequent mostly. We will notice that all the grasshoppers get this mixture all over themselves. On a warm day when they are usually the most active, we can watch them slow, until they freeze. By this time they have covered themselves with a white batter. The birds can spot them easily, and love the taste.

As bait we can use 1 kilogram (2 pounds) of powdered all-bran mixed with 15 grams (1/2 ounce) of carbaryl. Carbaryl is a dangerous product as it acts as a stomach poison to humans, and insects.

The natural enemies of grasshoppers are hoverfly larvae, birds, lizards, and parasitic wasps.

Mealy Bugs are small, sap sucking insects that we can divide into two main groups: stem mealybugs, and root mealybugs.

Stem Mealy Bugs are easier to notice, and destroy as they are usually white, and waxy. They can be found on the leaves, and soft stems. If we only have a few plants, we can use a drop of methylated spirits on a paint brush or cotton bud, dabbing each mealy bug. However, if our collection is large, and the infestation is spreading, we can use the cooking oil mixture or the detergent mixture described at the beginning of this chapter. When we use cooking oil, stand the plant in a shady place for one week.

Hoverfly larvae, ladybirds, and their larvae, also lacewings, and their larvae are a mealy bugs natural enemy.

Root Mealy Bugs are harder to notice. These creatures are usually first noticed when we are potting plants into new containers. On the sides of the old container, white, waxy patches give away their occupancy. Root mealy bugs form woolly water resistant nests around the roots, sucking the sap out of them, and stunting the plant.

To control this pest on small plants, wash the soil away from the roots, trimming off any badly effected areas. Soak the roots in an insecticide mixture that contains maldison before potting. For large plants soak the soil in the insecticide mixture every two weeks for the next six weeks. Another method is to submerge the whole plant in warm water, approximately 38°C. (80°F.), and leave for 24-hours.

Nematodes or eelworms are round, worm-like creatures that are so small that we may not see them with the naked eye. The kind that is most likely to attack our plants, the root-knot nematode, cause the roots to swell, and become knobbly. These swollen roots are unable to absorb water, and nutrients from the soil. Badly effected plants wilt quickly, and lose vigour.

If sterilized potting mixture is in use, nematodes should not occur. If these pests are present in our plants, submerge the container of potting mixture in a sugar solution. Below is the formula for the sugar solution:

1. two tablespoons of sugar,
2. two litres (1/2 pint) of warm water, mix ingredients thoroughly. Repeat this process every time the potting mixture needs watering until the plant picks up its normal vigour.

Red Spider Mites are very small creatures that breed rapidly to plague proportions. They feed on the underside of the leaves, sucking the sap out of the plant. Because of their minute size, we first notice the damage, not the red spider. The mottling, and silvering of the plant leaves betray their presence. In the past, before we used insecticides on such a wide scale, these creatures were not important pests. Their numbers where kept in check by their predators. These mites have built up a resistance to many insecticides, and have few natural enemies left. Fortunately, predator mites are also becoming immune to the same insecticides. Specialists breed these resistant strains in laboratories, and sell them throughout the world. If poison sprays are not used in our gardens this pest should not bother us. When spider mites are breeding out of check on our plants, we can control them with the same cooking oil mixture as mentioned above. Nevertheless, the cooking oil mixture also kills the predator mites, so only spray when they breed unchecked. This mixture kills both eggs, and adults. Also, the mites love dry, and dusty conditions, and live on the underside of the leaves, here we can also control them with a regular soap, and water spray.

Their natural biological controls are such predators as predatory mites, small lady bird beetles, and lacewings.

Scale Insects are a major pest to many types of epiphytes. Different looking varieties of scale insects invade different areas. Some scale insects have very tough shells covering them. Others have soft scales with very fluffy coverings. As their name suggests, they usually look like small scales on the leaves, and stems of our plants. Often, ants bring these insects to our specimen plants. To clean up any infestations in our collections use the cooking oil mixture that was described earlier in this chapter. Shake, and spray on the infected parts. After spraying, place the plant in the shade for approximately one week. If ants are a problem, spray with weed juice, as also suggested above. We could also check the remedies for ant problems mentioned earlier in this chapter.

The natural biological controls that keep scale insects in check are lady birds, and many types of beetles, also parasitic wasps.

Slugs, and snails are usually pests wherever we find them. Surprisingly, we do have some good slugs, and snails. In Australia, there is a pale yellow slug, with a small, flat shell at its rear end, known as the Pestacella. The Pestacella slug feeds on other slugs, and ground insects. Australia also has a large, white snail that is know as the cannibal snail for obvious reasons. This information may not be of help if we live somewhere else in the world. Nevertheless, it is worth checking to see if any slugs, and snails have good habits before we destroy all of them. Plants that have holes in the leaves, and silvery slime trails over the foliage, and stems are showing obvious signs that these pests are present.

To destroy these pests, snail pellets are usually used. If we have a pet that wanders through this area, it may eat some pellets. Any animal that eats snail pellets will succumb to the same end, so place the pellets in a safe place. We can place the pellets into a tube that has a diameter wide enough to fit the largest snails. Bury this tube just below the surface of the soil, leaving the open end above the ground so the snails can crawl in. This tube should not be wide enough to allow our pets to get to the pellets. The main problem with snail pellets is that they are a stomach poison. Therefore, after they have started to feed, any bird or animal that eats the snail may also die.

A safer way to rid our garden of these pests is a morning tour after a wet night, to handpick these snails.

If we spray our plants with a detergent spray as described above, we will also cut the population down. Another method is to lay down passive traps, such as an upturned plant pot, damp towel, Hessian cloth, rhubarb or cabbage leaves. They must be placed on damp soil. Make sufficient space at the edges for the slugs, and snails to crawl under. They call these traps passive because the slugs, and snails will go there after a night feeding. Handpicking is necessary the next morning.

A reasonable repellant to keep slugs from snacking on your plants, is to wrap a length of copper wire around your terra cotta pot. When slugs come into contact with the copper, it gives them a small electric shock, and theyll turn back. Cut a piece slightly longer than the pots circumference, wrap it around the pot, and twist the wire ends together with a pair of pliers. Its important that the plants leaves dont come into contact with the ground or the slugs will use them to bridge the copper wire, and attack the plant. However, do not use this method on your bromeliads, as contact by copper can seriously damage your plants.

The natural biological controls are centipedes, and scorpions that eat slug, and snail eggs, cannibal snails, and slugs, also many types of birds, and lizards eat snails.

White Flies are related to aphids. Also, these insects suck the sap out of new plant growth and leaves. Mostly, these insects can be seen underneath the leaves, often in plage proportion. If the plant is disturbed, white clouds of these tiny flying insects take to the air. Later, they return to the plant and neighbouring plants. They will breed quickly in a closed environment, such as a greenhouse or indoors.

To rid our plants of this pest, a detergent-spray as mentioned earlier can be used. As they are attracted to yellow objects, we can smear Vaseline on a yellow plastic plate, or other yellow object, and place it between, or just above, the plants. Then knock the plant and disturb the white flies, many of them will head for the plate and come to a sticky end. Lady birds and other predators will soon finish of the rest.

Natural enemies we can use as a biological control are lady birds, lacewings, praying mantis, small lizards and frogs. In some areas, a parasite called Encarsia can be purchased, and released in the greenhouse.

Plant Diseases

Plant diseases can also damage our plants: fungus problems are the most common. If diseases become common on our plants, we may be neglecting to care for all their needs.

Check to see if we are watering them correctly. Over watering is a common problem, especially when the plants are grown in a potting mixture that does not drain well. Epiphytes need plenty of air movement around the roots, and many cannot stand having their roots buried at all.

Plants that only grow as true epiphytes often live in a moist atmosphere, but their root surfaces do dry out between showers.

Make sure we are feeding them correctly, these plants are usually slow growers, and need only light feeding. The fertiliser, which is in the water, dries on the root surface, if the fertiliser is too strong these roots will be damaged by fertiliser burn allowing infections to enter.

Are our plants getting the correct amount of light? Some plants need stronger light than others. A common problem with light is that the shade cloth gives the correct amount of shade when new, but later becomes clogged with dust, and leaves.

Correct temperature is also significant in preventing disease. When plants have difficulty growing because the temperature is to high or low, they also have difficulty fighting off disease. Cold snaps, especially if frosts are present can cause damage to soft tissues, often allowing a rot fungus to set in.

Good air circulation is very important for the health of plants. Packing plants too close together interferes with air movement, and helps in the spread of disease from one plant to the next.

Disease Remedies.

Milk mixture: 1. one part of milk,
2. six parts of water.
Mix, and spray both sides of all the leaves.

Baking soda remedy: 1. three level teaspoons of baking soda,
2. one litre (13/4 pints) of water,
3. a drop or two of liquid detergent.

Mix, and shake before use. At this strength it will clean up most fungal problems. No damage to any plants should occur, and we can use it to prevent fungal problems in the future.

Mildew also goes under the name of powdery mildew. This is a fungus that resembles a powdery, white growth on the surface of many plants. This disease is especially prominent on plants that grow in a moist, still atmosphere. We can spray our plants with a common fungicide or the milk mixture to get rid of this problem. An easier, and safer method is to make sure that the plant gets plenty of fresh air moving around it, to prevent any occurrence of the problem. Spraying with the baking soda remedy before the outbreak occurs often keeps mildew away for many months.

Botrytis (grey mould) is a fungus that attacks plant foliage, stems, and flowers. Botrytis is a grey, fluffy mould that will only attack plants when we spray them regularly, and the water stays on the plants for long periods. If we notice the botrytis in its early stages, before the plant turns black, and all the foliage is wilting, using the baking soda remedy can cure it.


Plant Identification.

The way that plants are listed today by taxonomists is similar to the method started by Carolus Linnaeus, a Swedish botanist who lived between 1707, and 1778. We are indebted to him for the binomial system. A method of listing all life forms by giving each a genus, and a species. His true name was Carl von Linne, which, when provided with a Latin ending became an example of a genus, and species name. His method of listing plants by their floral structures is still used today. He regarded plants at the genus level to be original, and part of creation.

The work continued smoothly, and worked well for another hundred years until Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution became famous. At this point, doubt crept into the way they listed them, and confusion has reigned ever since in trying to find out which plants evolved from which. Many scientists still believe the old Darwinian theory, although they have no evidence, and they ignore all scientific facts that prove the theory invalid.

The plants in this chapter are divided into groups. These are listed below for easy identification:
Family, the plural being families, is the largest grouping of plants in this book. For easy identification, plant families always start with a capital letter, and usually end in aceae. Occasionally a plant family becomes too large, and they cannot handle it without problems, so they divide it into subfamilies for easier handling.

Genus, the plural being genera, is the next main group, and is the first name given to a plant. We always start it with a capital letter. The number of genera in a plant family is not limited. If a genus is too large to handle, they sometimes divide it into subgenera.

Species, is both singular, and plural. It is the second name given to a plant, and we always start it with a small letter. Any number of species can be placed in a genus, but if species become too large to handle, they sometimes divide it into subspecies.

Variety, the plural being varieties, is a variation of a species of plant, that may or may not come true from seed. Variety names always begin with a small letter. The abbreviation var. is also commonly used.

Form, the plural being forms, which is often a variety from one area that may not grow the same as the identical variety from a different area, changing because of the environment. This is an adaptation to an area built into the chromosomes so the plant can survive over a more diverse habitat. It is not a mutation.

Hybrid, the plural being hybrids, is the offspring of genetically different parents, either natural or made by man. The closer the relationship the easier the cross. Most commonly we make the cross at the species level, but sometimes we make crosses at the genus level, very rarely at the family level. Hybrid names always start with capital letters, and usually placed between inverted commas.

Cultivar, the plural being cultivars, is a horticulturally derived variety that may or may not come true from seed. Often, the change does not help it to survive in a natural habitat. Its survival is mostly dependant on man. Cultivar names always begin with a capital letter.

Plant Families, Their Genera, and Species

In this chapter the plant families have been placed in alphabetical order. In each family the genera are also placed in alphabetical order, then in order by their species. This should help the grower in the search for a particular plant. We may not know the family that the genus, and species belong too, but we can find it in the index. This is also true if we only know the common name, as we also list many common names. Synonyms of scientific names that are often still in use are placed in the index, also their new names. Information that is for the complete family is placed at the family level, and can be found under the name of that family.

Details are placed at the genus level when suitable for all the species in that genus. This saves repeating the information for most plants.

We mention the identification of the species in the first paragraph. The description covers the colours, sizes, and shapes of the plants. Then any cultivation notes for that species is placed in the next paragraph. We also mention how easy the plants are to grow where we know this information. I have cited the natural habitats of each species listed where possible. Often they do not get an evenly spread rainfall over the year, but is mainly either in summer or winter. We have mentioned this so that we can group these plants together, and water them in the right season. With this knowledge, and the knowledge of our own climate we can make changes, the use of shade houses or greenhouses can create microclimates to suit the plants requirements. Their natural environment is not necessarily the best environment, and most plants have a reasonable tolerance to either warmer or cooler, wetter or drier conditions.


Click on any family to see a list of their genera and species, with descriptions, Helpful growing hints, and places of origin.





































































for new families to come.


for new families to come.



(Not available)


Acute: margins straight to convex, forming a terminal angle 45o – 90o.
Actinomorphic: flowers with radial symmetry and parts arranged at one level, with definite numbers of parts and size
Acuminate: margins straight to convex forming a terminal angle of less than 45o.
Adpressed: pressed closely to axis in an upwards direction.
Adventitious roots: arising from organs other than roots.
Areoles: the spaces formed by a vein network. Hair growing in the areoles is peculiar to the family Cactaceae.
Bilabiate: two lipped.
Bracts: modified leaves found in the inflorescence.
Callus: a fleshy or plate-like structure mostly associated with orchids.
Carpel: the central whorl of modified floral leaves. Collectively known as the gynoecium, or the floral organ that bears ovules.
Caudex: a short, thick, perennial stem, above or below ground.
Clavate: club-like.
Crenate: shallowly notched, round toothed margins.
Cristate: crested, in the form of a crest.
Deciduous: a plant which looses its leaves in a given season.
Dentate: margins with round or sharp, coarse teeth that point outwards at right angles to mid-rib or mid-vein, cut 1/161/distance to mid-rib or mid-vein.
Dichotomous: forked branches or stems divided into equal halves.
Dimorphic: having two different sizes and/or shapes within the same species.
Diurnal: opening during the day.
Dorsal sepal: odd sepal usually situated on the uppermost side of the flower.
Elliptic: with widest axis at mid-point of structure and with margins symmetrically curved from 2:1 – 3:2.
Endemic: confined to a given region.
Entire: without indentation or incisions on margins; smooth.
Epiphyte: a plant growing on another plant, but not parasitic.
Epiphytic: living as an epiphyte.
Epi-log: portable wood or substitute for attaching epiphytes on.
Frond: the leaf of a fern or fern ally.
Glabrous: smooth, devoid of trichomes.
Habitat: natural dwelling place or abode.
Hybrid: plant resulting from the cross fertilisation of different types of parents.
Hybridise: the art of cross fertilising different parents to create hybrid seed.
Hydroponics: water culture. Growing plants without soil.
Incurved or Incurving: curved inward or upward.
Indigenous: native to a country, region or area.
Indusium: a flap of tissue covering a sorus
Inflorescence: arrangement of flowers on stem structural types.
Keiki: Hawaiian word for baby. Vegetative offshoot (plantlet) formed at a node.
Labellum or Lip: in orchids the petal in front of the column.
Lanceolate: grass leaf shaped, from 6:1 – 3:1, widest near the base.
Linear: narrow and flattened with mostly parallel margins. 12:1
Lithophyte: dwelling on rocks.
Lobed: round toothed, cut 1/81/to the middle of the structure.
Micro-climate: a small area with a different climate to the surrounding area. Artificial or natural.
Monopodial: Having one main axis of growth.
Monotypic: the only member and type.
Montane rainforest: high rainforest above 1000 metres or (3300 feet) often covered in clouds.
Narrowly elliptic: with widest axis at mid-point of structure and with margins symmetrically curved, from 6:1 – 3:1.
Natural environment: the place it occupies in nature.
Nocturnal: opening at night.
Oblanceolate: narrowing at the base. 6:1 – 3:1
Oblong: widest axis at mid-point of structure and essentially parallel.
Obovoid: widest axis above middle, margins symmetrically curved; egg shaped 2:1 – 3:2.
Obtuse: margins straight to convex, forming a terminal angle more than 90o.
Opuntioid: shaped like the pad-shaped branches of an Opuntia.
Ovate: with widest axis below the centre, the margins being symmetrically curved (Egg shaped).
Ovoid: ovate shaped 2:1 – 3:2.
Panicle: branched inflorescence with pediculated flowers.
Parasite: lives on a host plant, depriving it of nutrients.
Parasitic: living as a parasite.
Pectinate: having closely parallel tooth like projections, comblike.
Pedicel: individual flower stalk.
Peduncle: main stalk for entire inflorescence.
Perianth: combined calyx and corolla.
Petiole: leaf stalk.
Pinna: a primary division of a frond or leaf.
Pinnae: plural of pinna.
Pinnate: a leaf or frond that is divided once.
Pinnately divided: divided into pinnae
Pinnule: a secondary division of a leaf or frond.
Propagate: to reproduce by seed of cuttings.
Pruinose: frosted over with a heavy wax coat.
Quadri-pinnate: with four orders of leaflets, each pinnately compound.
Raceme: unbranched inflorescence, the flowers with stalks.
Rachis: major axis within an inflorescence.
Recurved or recurving: curved outward or downward.
Revolute: margins of sides rolled outwards over the lower surface.
Rhizoids: a hair-like absorptive organ.
Rhizome: an underground stem, or one that runs on the surface of the ground.
Rhombic: with widest axis at mid-point of structure and with straight margins; elliptic but margins straight and middle angled.
Rosette: arranged like the petals of a rose.
Rostellum: part of the median stigma lobe of orchids.
Saxicolous: dwelling among rocks.
Scales: modified leaves that are small, often thin, dry and membranous.
Serrate: notched edge.
Sessile: without a flower stalk, without petiole.
Simple: undivided, of one piece.
Sinuate: margins shallowly and smoothly indented, wavy in a horizontal plane, without distinctive teeth or lobes.
Soredia: minute reproductive structures.
Sori or Sorus: a cluster of sporangia. The fertile place on the frond.
Spadix: unbranched inflorescence, flowers embedded in the rachis.
Spathe: an enlarged bract enclosing an inflorescence
Spatulate: oblong or obovate at the tip, narrowing to cylindrical at the base.
Spike: unbranched inflorescence. Flowers without personal stalks.
Sporangium: a spore case.
Spore: a vegetative reproductive cell which does not contain an embryo.
Stipe: the petiole or stalk of a fern frond.
Stolon: shoots running on the surface, rooting at the tips.
Symbiotic: growing together for mutual benefit.
Sympodial: with rhizomes and pseudobulbs.
Tepal: segment of perianth in which the parts are not differentiated into distinct sepals or petals.
Terete: cylindrical.
Terrestrial: growing in the ground.
Tripinnate: with three orders of leaflets, each pinnately divided.
Truncate: cut straight across; ending abruptly almost at right angles to the mid-rib or mid-vein.
Tuberculate: with hard, swollen, persistent base or tubercle.
Umbel: flat topped inflorescence, stems arise from common point.
Undulate: with a series of vertical curves at right angles to the central axis. Wavy on a horizontal plane.
Viscidium: the sticky portion of the stigma lobe.
Zygomorphic: with floral parts in two symmetrical halves.


Included on This Website)

Wressley Cocke’s Epicactus Creations

Wressley Cocke apparently created a number of varieties (hybrids) of epicactus, as shown on the following webpage from James Horsfield’s website. Examination of the webpage shows that no fewer than 11 varieties have been created by Cocke. “Bob Grimshaw” is not among the hybrids described, however.



The name Epicactus is now used in most countries to describe hybrids with unknown parents. Epicactus may or may not have some terrestrial sap in their veins. Also, other names often used to describe these plants are Epiphyllum Hybrids or Orchid Cacti.


The list, and brief description below is not complete, but will give us some idea of the many types available.


Mostly, these plants are easily damaged by frost. So, keep them in a warm, frost free environment during winter. Some plants will withstand mild drought conditions, yet all will benefit if provided with a moist atmosphere, and a potting mixture that is just moist. The potting mixture can be a commercial mix, used for ordinary house plant. Nevertheless, improved with a little leaf mould or peat. It must always be drained well, with less water given in cool weather.


The size of the blooms given in the text is the average size, as blooms on the same plant often vary considerably. The colours also vary slightly depending on the temperature, and light. When the blooms appear out of their normal season, changes of colour, and size have also been observed.


Epicactus Ach-ya

Usually, the stems on this cactus are flat, although sometimes triangular. They branch strongly from the base, and soon hang downwards. On these stems, wide-open blooms develop in spring. They grow between 18, and 23-centimetres (7 and 9-inches) wide. Each petal overlaps the next one. Also, They are dark red, with the inner petals edged in violet. Their stamens form a circle inside the open bloom. In addition, a red style protrudes beyond the stamens.


When placed in a hanging container, this plant looks very attractive. It is an easily grown plant that branches from the base.


Hybridised, and registered by Richard J. Chadwick in 1991 by crossing Epicactus Bengal with Epicactus Wild Acclaim.

Epicactus Ackermannii Hybridus

Most of the branches on this hybrid are triangular, with some flat growth. Many branches appear from the base of the plant growing upwards at first, later, they hang below their container. They produce an abundance of blooms from the areoles. Each bloom is between 7.5, and 13-centimetres (5, and 7-inches) across. Their petals are reddish-orange with a silky texture.


This easy-to-grow hybrid is very hardy. It is often found growing in full sun, and in dry conditions. Some plants even withstanding a touch of frost. Although they have red stems, and are slow growing, they survive, and still flower. When grown in 80% shade in a warm, and moist climate, rapid growth occurs. Under these conditions this plant flowers to perfection.


First recorded in 1897 on Simons plant list, and probably produced by N. L. Britton, and J. Rose.


Epicactus Ada Perry

Flat, and triangular stems are present on this hybrid, and they cascade below the container. From the base of the plant are produced many new branches. Large, double, cup shaped flowers develop on the previous years growth, reaching 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide. Each bloom has ruffled petals that are predominantly white in the middle, with yellow outer petals.


This is an attractive, and easy to grow hybrid. Because it branches from near soil level, it looks good in a hanging container.


The hybridiser of this plant was Richard G. Latimer, Snr. He cross-pollinated Epicactus Pegasus with Epicactus Chalice, and registered this plant in 1982.


Epicactus Adventure

Large blooms are produced by this hybrid. They expand between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. These blooms have bright purple petals, and an even darker centre stripe. The silky outer petals are of the darkest purple.


One parent of this plant is an Epicactus named Prof. Ebert, the other parent is not known.


Epicactus Amber Queen

Bright flame, and amber petals make this extra large, bowl-shaped bloom a beautiful plant. Each flower is above 23-centimetres (9-inches) across, and many blooms are produced in a single season. Further, the flowers on this hybrid open wide. The petals are broad, and rounded with ruffled edges.


The name of this hybrid has been adopted by the Epiphyllum Society of America, as no definite name could be found. This plant is often used in creating new hybrids.

Epicactus Ambrosia

Every bloom on this plant grows more than 23-centimetres (9-inches) across. This extra large, double flower is shaped like a wide cup. It is classified as multicoloured, as it has very broad, overlapping petals of lavender pink with a faint orange centre stripe.


Good hanging type growth is produced by this hybrid. It was created by Wressey Cocke by crossing Epicactus Wonderful One with Epicactus Happy Thoughts, and registered by Everson, and Williams of Rainbow Garden Nursery in 1983.


Epicactus American Sweatheart

Here, we have another giant bloom that grows more than 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide. This time, it is shaped like a cup, and saucer, and is of great beauty. Their flowers are symmetrically arranged, having light rose pink petals with serrated edges.


Wressey Cocke created this hybrid by cross pollinating the hybrid Epicactus Ruby Snowflake with Epicactus Tassel.


Epicactus Andromeda

Medium sized blooms grow on this plant, and expand between 13, and 18-centimetres (5, and 7-inches) wide. They have coloured petals that have an incredible contrast, silky white with gold tips, and sepals of deep yellow.


Paul Fort, and Garland O’Barr were the hybridisers that created this alluring plant.


Epicactus Annie P. Williams

This is another plant with giant blooms, above 23-centimetres (9-inches) across. The wide petals are mainly coloured tannish orange, with touches of violet.


The floral beauty of this bloom is often used by hybridists to improve the later generations of Epicacti. It was produced by Peggy Williams.


Epicactus Astronaut

On the stems of this cactus, develop large, funnel-shaped blooms, growing approximately 23-centimetres (9-inches) across. Each bloom consists of wide petals with ruffled edges. The centre petals are lavender purple with a red centre stripe. Outer petals are red with a lavender-purple edge.


It is an easily grown, strong plant, produced by Paul Fort, and Garland O’Barr.


Epicactus Bambi

Blooms measure between 13, and 18-centimetres (5, and 7-inches) wide on this small plant. They have an attractive fuchsia colour with a darker centre stripe blending into a carmine throat. Inner petals form a trumpet shape.


This plant branches from the base forming a good shape for a hanging container or epi-log. It grows better with more shade than the average Epicactus. Theresa M. Monmonier grew this plant from a seed of Epicactus Deutsche Kaiserin.


Epicactus Bella Vista

Branching strongly from the base, this plant has small, flared, bell-shaped blooms. Each is from 7.5 to 13-centimetres (3 to 5-inches) wide. Petals are raspberry purple with a backing of pink sepals.


Wressey Cocke produced this easy to grow, good hanging container type hybrid.


Epicactus Bens Laura

Ranging between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide are the double blooms of this hybrid. These blooms open flat, consisting of many, feathery, and blistered, pearly white petals. Also, the golden-amber sepals form an attractive backdrop to the petals.


This good hanging container type hybrid was created when Dr. Robert W. Poindexter crossed Epicactus Eden with Epicactus Vive Rouge.


Epicactus Blackamore

Strong, flat branches hang loosely below the hybrids container. On the sides of these stems are large, wide-open blooms. Each reaches between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. In the centre of the bloom are brilliantly coloured inner petals that are shining, and well-rounded, darkly coloured, and satiny. The centre line is peony purple fading to paler purple on the petal edge. Outer petals are cardinal red.


This is a strong, and vigorous plant that is easy to grow. It was produced by Dr. Robert W. Poindexter.


Epicactus Bliss

A large plant is quickly formed with many large blooms on the stems. Each bloom measures from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) across. They have rounded, and ruffled petals coloured clear pastel orange. Nevertheless, these large petals soon become floppy.


Theresa M. Monmonier created, and registered this good strong grower in 1941.


Epicactus Bonita

Appearing on the side of the wavy stems are small flowers. Each bloom on this plant grows only 7.5 to 13-centimetres (3 to 5-inches) wide. Also, they are shaped like a cup, and saucer, and each has overlapping petals of satin white in the front of sepals of golden-yellow.


It develops good hanging container type growth that occasionally blooms out of its normal season. This Wressey Cocke creation was made by crossing Epicactus Bridal Shower with Epicactus Little Shoe Lady, and the product with Epicactus LondonSunshine.

Epicactus Born Free

Many small blooms occur on this plant. Each is cup, and saucer shaped, and coloured iridescent fuchsia-purple.


An easy-to-grow plant that is free flowering. It branches strongly from the base forming good hanging container type growth. Wressey Cocke used Epicactus Galago as the seed parent.


Epicactus Bridegroom

Opening very wide, the very large blooms extend more than 23-centimetres (9-inches) across. All have pure white inner petals, and amber outer petals. These blooms are produced on extremely vigorous growth.


This plant was produced by Everson, and Williams of Rainbow Gardens in 1977.


Epicactus Bridesmaid

This plant has extremely large, cup, and saucer-shaped blooms, opening above 23-centimetres across. Petals are silky, and light pastel pink.


This W.J. Hathaway hybrid was registered by Edward Stephans. It branches with ease from the base with weeping stems, forming an excellent hanging plant for epi-logs.


Epicactus Calisto


Wide-open blooms with a diameter above 23-centimetres (9-inches) are the main feature of this hybrid. Inner petals are white, pointed, and overlapping. An attractive background of bronze-yellow petals, and sepals frames this magnificent bloom. In the centre of the bloom is a greenish throat.


George French created this plant by crossing Epicactus Tele with Epicactus Jennifer Ann.


Epicactus Celestial Snow

Large cup, and saucer shape flowers between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) unfold on this plant. Each has narrow, snow white petals, edged in creamy-yellow. The sepals are a medium yellow, some with dark rhodamine. This bloom also has a greenish hue.


This plant was developed by Sherman E. Beahm of BeahmGardens.

Epicactus Clarence Wright

Wide-open blooms on this plant are very pleasing. Each is bell-shaped, opening between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. Petals are ruffled, and light to deep golden-yellow inside. Outer petals, and sepals are bronze, and recurved.


It forms a well-shaped plant, and was produced by Dick Wright. It is free flowering.


Epicactus Clown

This plant is one of the best hybrids of recent times. It has a cup, and saucer shaped bloom of overlapping petals. This flower is between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. Inner petals are white with purple to red tips, and veining, backed by dark red sepals.


Created, and registered by Phyllis Fleschig in 1982. The long, strong branches have a cascading effect. They grow quickly, and look attractive in a hanging container if it is placed high so the branches stay off the ground.


Epicactus Coral Bells

An early, and heavily blooming plant with small daffodil shaped flowers of dense coral pink. Each bloom is only 7.5 to 13-centimetres (3 to 5-inches) wide.


It looks good in a hanging container, and will even produce the odd winter flower. Alice Buchanan crossed Epicactus Stuck Up with Epicactus Sweet Kisses to obtain this beauty.


Epicactus Coral Lace

Flowers on this hybrid are small, and cup, and saucer-shaped. Each is less than 7.5-centimetres (3-inches) wide. This graceful plant has coral pink flowers.


This dainty hanging container type plant is a Wressey Cocke hybrid using Epicactus Bridal Shower, and Epicactus Little Shoe Lady.


Epicactus Coralie

Small cup, and saucer shaped blooms with overlapping petals grow in profusion on this plant. Each bloom grows between 7.5, and 13 centimetres (3, and 5-inches) across. The inner petals are evenly shaded with fuchsia. Outer petals are coloured from red to purple. They have a lighter pencil line trim on all the petals.


Registered by Hurst‘s Nursery, this hybrid came into existence when Fred Boutin crossed Epicactus Bridal Shower, with Epicactus Pigmy. It forms a pleasing hanging container-type of plant that has flat growth.

Epicactus Daisy Dean

The large, and crinkled, wide open, wheel shaped blooms grow between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. They have almost white, and crepe like inner petals. Each bloom blends to a light purple centre, and is on a plum purple background. Also, some sepals curl back.


This hybrid was produced at BeahmGardensby Sherman E. Beahm.

Epicactus Dancing Doll

Epicactus Dancing Doll produces flowers that are mostly white with brownish-white outer petals. The size of their blooms is between 15, and 20-centimetres (6, and 8-inches) wide.

Cactus Petes nursery created this attractive hybrid.


Epicactus Dante

This old, and beautiful plant has wide-open blooms, expanding from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) in diameter. Petals are wide, overlapping, and rounded. Inner petals are fuchsia with an orange centre stripe, and fuchsia to orange tips. These inner petals are framed in a background of orange petals. The stamens mostly fall to the lower part of the tube. They are fuchsia at the base, moving upwards to orange then white at the top. Standing out from the stamens is a style of pale pink with long stigma lobes of cream.


F.A. Walton created this hybrid. It was first published in 1845. The Epiphyllum Society of Americahas adopted the name ‘Dante’ to this plant only. They have long three angled stems, and form a large growing plant, taking up plenty of space.

Epicactus David Copperfield

Blooms on this plant expand above 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide. Each is cup, and saucer shaped, coloured coppery-salmon pink with a rose edge.


It was produced by Cactus Pete. Although dating from 1946, this is still a favourite among many collectors.


Epicactus David J. La Borde

This plant has thick, flat, and broad stems. From the areoles on the sides of these stems, blooms that grow above 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide are common. Each bloom is a double, shaped like a cup, and saucer with a yellow eye. Also, the greenish-cream inner petals are edged in yellow, each being crepe textured, broad, and rounded. The second row of petals is mainly light yellow, backed by very long, deep yellow sepals.


A Fern La Borde Nursery production.


Epicactus Delicate Jewels

Blooms on this plant grow less than 7.5-centimetres (3-inches) across. Each is satin pink, and starlike. They have recurved petals with a silky texture.


This hybrid is a beautifully formed plant that looks its best in a hanging container. It is another Wressey Cocke hybrid of merit.


Epicactus Destiny

The new stems of this plant branch consistently from the base. In addition, each stem is usually flat. From many areoles, extra small, open, and bell-shaped blooms develop. Each flower is less than 7.5-centimetres (3-inches) across. Colours are orchid pink on the inner petals, each with a darker centre stripe. Also, these blooms have white in the throat, and salmon pink sepals. Moreover, the complete bloom is glossy.


This is another plant that looks attractive in a hanging container. Because of its small size, it mixes well with many other epiphytes.


Theresa M. Monmonier was the hybridist who created this plant.


Epicactus Dobsons Yellow

Branching well from the base to form a beautiful, compact plant. In spring it develops mediumly sized, rich creamy-yellow blooms on a freely flowering plant.


Created by a hybridist called Dobson as its name suggests. It is one of the best butter-yellows on the market.


Epicactus Dolly Madison

These extra large, wide-open bell-shaped blooms have wide, rounded inner petals. Also, each petal is ruffled, and overlapping, giving a feathered effect. Furthermore, the colours of these translucent flowers are white with yellow throats, and deep yellow outer petals, and sepals.


Epicactus Dr. A. D. Houghton

These extra large, wide-open blooms open to above 23-centimetres (9-inches) across, and are mainly rich red but with a wide purple edge.


H. M. Wegener produced this hybrid in 1933, and since its creation, it has often been used by hybridists to improve their own plants.


Epicactus Duchess

This plant carries blooms that measure from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) across. Each flower has white petals that are delicately shaded with pink, and contrasting deep purple sepals. It is a very late bloomer.


Epicactus Eastern Monarch

On the very long branches of this plant, which is often three angled, are blooms of red, and purple, marked with orange streaks.


This attractive hybrid was achieved by N. A. Auger.


Epicactus Edah

On the branches of this plant are extra large blooms growing above 23-centimetres (9-inches) across, with wide, and rounded, ruffled petals that are predominantly red with a purple edge.


Originated then registered by Cactus Pete in 1943. It is used extensively in breeding new hybrids.


Epicactus Eden

These 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide blooms are mostly white with outer petals of yellow, and burnt orange.


Dr. Robert W. Poindexter was the first to create an Epicactus by this name. Other growers have used the same name for there own plants, but these names are now invalid. The Epiphyllum Society of Americaadopted the name Epicactus Eden as the standard name for this hybrid. Also, this plant has been used to create many later hybrids.

Epicactus Ernest Gundchen

This is an early flowering plant with blooms growing more than 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide. Each of these flowers is glossy dark orange with a fine carmine trim on the inner petals. Occasionally, this plant has some blooms in autumn, but the heaviest flowering is in spring.


The hybridist of this plant was Curt Knebel back in 1945.


Epicactus Eve

This plant has small, flat stems that branch strongly from the base. These narrow stems have a strong midrib. Furthermore, from the areoles develop many, very small, open cup-shaped blooms, less than 7.5-centimetres (3-inches) across. The petals are pink, and have recurved tips.


They are one of the smallest of all the Epicactus, producing an excellent, tiny hanging container plant.


Epicactus Fair Annet

This large open funnel-shaped flower has pointed inner petals, and is a delightful shade of pastel pink with a lavender-purple edge, opening as wide as 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches).


An Earl Childs hybrid.


Epicactus Fame

Large, funnel-shaped blooms open wide on this plant. Each is 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) in diameter. They have dark red petals. Yet, the outer petals have a white edge.


This beautiful plant was chosen from seedlings grown from the fruit of Epicactus Gertrude Knebel. It was grown by Paul Fort, and Garland O’Barr.


Epicactus Farewell

The flowers on this plant are also between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. Nevertheless, they differ by having creamy-white petals in the centre, and canary yellow, and amber petals in the background.


It was another seedling raised from the fruit of Epicactus Gertrude Knebel. Like the previous plant, it was grown by Paul Fort, and Garland O’Barr.


Epicactus Fern La Borde

On this hybrid, the stem growth is usually flat, and strap-like, branching heavily from the base. This plant soon forms compact growth. From near the ends of these branches develop masses of blooms, less than 7.5-centimetres (3-inches) across. Their flower buds appear in spring. Each opens into a small, starlike, funnel-shaped bloom. The petals are fuchsine pink with a darker centre stripe, and each is narrow, and pointed. Also, they have beautifully recurved back petals.


This plant was grown by Wressey Cocke.


Epicactus Gypsy Belle

All the stems of this cactus are long, and flat, and they branch favourably from their bases. They produce blooms 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide in the spring. These flowers open wide, with a deep rhodamine pink centre stripe to the petals. This stripe fades, giving a lighter pink edge to the petal. Outer petals are darker.


Epicactus Bengal, and Epicactus Afghan where cross pollinated by Wressey Cocke to develop this unique plant. It was registered at Dean, and Tena Hawks nursery.

Epicactus Hermosissimus

Large blooms are developed by this hybrid. Each is between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. These very colourful blooms have petals of scarlet-crimson with violet-coral edges, and an orange centre stripe.


Because of its colour, and size, this plant is heavily used in hybridising.


Epicactus Jorg Siepke

The stems on this plant are flat with deep serrations, carrying large blooms that have mostly white inner petals with lilac-pink tips. Framing these light coloured inner petals are the carmine-red outer petals.


Curt Knebel produced this outstanding plant. Modern hybridists still use this plant to create new hybrids.


Epicactus Kami

Growing from the notches of this cactus are the trumpet-shaped blooms, opening more than 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide. Each is orange with a darker orange edge.


Created by Wressey Cocke, and registered by Dean, and Tena Hawks.


Epicactus Lena

Most of the stems on this Epicactus are flat, although, some branches are narrower with triangular growth. Many flowers occur on this plant, mostly in the spring. In size, they are between 13, and 18-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. Their inner petals are soft-lavender-pink with a much lighter centre stripe. Outer petals are creamy pink with a cream mid-stripe. White stamens, and carpels look prominent in the green throat. Each bloom has overlapping petals, and opens wide.


The cross was made with an Aporophyllum, and an unknown Epicactus. Joyce Carr of Australiawas the hybridist, registering the plant in 1987.

Epicactus Lilac Time

This hybrid has very large blooms that open almost flat. These blooms open more than 25-centimetres (10-inches) wide. Each bloom has broad, rounded petals of lilac-blue with a lighter centre stripe.


Theresa M. Monmonier produced, and published this beauty in 1943. It is still used in hybridising, probably in an attempt to enhance the blue factor.


Epicactus Madonna

These plants produce ruffled blooms opening between 18, and 23-centimetres (7, and 9-inches) wide. Mostly these flowers have white centre petals with lemon-yellow outer ones.


A Clarion Steele production that is still heavily used today to create new hybrids.


Epicactus Mauvette

It is a plant with large, wide-open blooms, and broad, rounded petals. Each bloom on this hybrid reaches 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) in diameter. In addition, these petals have a crinkly texture. The inner ones are lavender-pink, and the outer petals are deep mauve.


Theresa M. Monmonier created this late flowering, fragrant hybrid.


Epicactus Misty Pink

The stems on this plant are mostly long, narrow, and triangular, soon forming a large plant. Also, small bristles are noticeable in the areoles. Blooms grow between 13, and 18-centimetres (5, and 7-inches) wide, and are shaped like an open cup. In addition, their outer petals are a light dusty pink, and the closer to the centre the petals get, the darker pink they become. In the throat of the bloom is a green eye, with white stamens, and carpels protruding almost column-like.


Although this is a large plant, its floral beauty will make it worthwhile growing. This plant is easy to grow, and flowers when young.


Epicactus Mojave

Blooms develop from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) across on this plant. Also, they have centre petals of light orange, edged in lavender, and outer petals of blood red.


It is an easy plant to grow. Moreover, they look very attractive in a hanging container as they branch profusely from the base.


The hybridist of this cactus was Clarion Steele.


Epicactus Moon Goddess

This strong, and sturdy plant branches well from the base. It has an upright habit with blooms above 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide. Each is a creamy-white colour. They are wide open cup-shaped flowers with wide petals that are incurved at the tips.


Developed, and registered by Cactus Pete in 1945.


Epicactus Moonlight Sonata

Long, triangular branches on this plant make it a large and spreading hybrid. Dark bronze-brown buds develop, giving the appearance of very dark blooms. Nevertheless, as the buds open, they reveal mostly white inner petals with a light violet centre stripe. The back petals have more violet, and the sepals are bronze-brown. Also, this plant has a good shaped flower with strong, white stamens, and stigma lobes protruding out of the centre like a free standing column. Many blooms are produced on the long branches, each opening between 18 and 23-centimetres (7 and 9-inches) wide.


Epicactus Eleonora Prochaska was cross pollinated with an unknown plant to create this plant. The hybridists of this beauty were Paul Fort, and Garland O’Barr.

Epicactus Mount

Trumpet-shaped blooms are a feature of this hybrid. Each flower has inner petals that are mostly white, and outer petals of lemon yellow.


It was produced by Clarion Steele from a seed pod that developed on Epicactus Hermosissimus. The pollen parent is unknown. This hybrid has been used in the breading of many new hybrids.


Epicactus Mrs. Gertrude W. Beahm

Wide, funnel-shaped blooms, above 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide, are exhibited by this late flowering specimen. The blooms are carmine red with a combination of blending colours.


Curt Knebel developed this hybrid plant.


Epicactus Orange Bouquet

Stems branch copiously from the base of this plant, but its main contribution is the mass of very small funnel-shaped blooms. Each flower is less than 7.5-centimetres (3-inches) wide. These flowers are coloured orange with a darker orange centre stripe.


Produced by Wressey Cocke, and registered by Dean, and Tena Hawks. They form a good hanging container type of plant.


Epicactus Patrician

Large, wide, flared, and funnel-shaped blooms are a feature of this plant. Each flower expands between 18 and 23-centimetres (7 and 9-inches) wide, also it has narrow, pointed petals. The inner petals are cream with pink edges. However, the outer petals are all pink.


It was created by Sherman E. Beahm of BeahmGardens.

Epicactus Paul De Longpre

The blooms of this plant have an incurved, cup, and saucer-shape. Each flower opens between 18 and 23-centimetres (7 and 9-inches) wide. This beautiful flower has inner petals of white with rich saffron yellow tips. Outer petals are yellow.


The hybridist of this beauty was H.M. Wegener.


Epicactus Pegasus

Very large, broad petals on these flowers expand the blooms more than 25-centimetres (10-inches) wide. They have inner petals of purple with a red-orange centre stripe. Outer petals are also purple, but edged with bronzy-violet.


Accordingly, it is used intensively in hybridising new plants.


Epicactus Popsicle

Each flower is small, only 7.5 to 13-centimetres (3 to 5-inches) wide-open. Each bloom has overlapping petals of solid red. Furthermore, the flowers are produced on flat, and triangular stems that generously branch from the base.


This hybrid was created by Everson, and Williams for RainbowGardensin 1981.

Epicactus Pride of Bell

The wide-open blooms of this hybrid range from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide. These blooms have three tones of pink, blending from rose to orchid.


Georgiana Russell created this beautiful hybrid. It has since been used as the parent of many new hybrids.


Epicactus Professor Ebert

Stem growth of this hybrid is triangular, and spiny. Moreover, these stems produce many funnel-shaped blooms. These flowers develop into sizes between 15 and 20-centimetres (6 and 8-inches) wide. Their colour is lilac with darker lilac outer petals. In addition, these petals have a silky texture.


It is an old favourite used heavily in producing new hybrids.


Epicactus Red Elf

The stem growths, of this hybrid, are both flat, and triangular. They grow erect at first, then the stems hang downwards. In early spring many flowers appear from the areoles, growing between 7.5 and 13-centimetres (3 and 5-inches) wide. These blooms are orange-red with a darker centre stripe, and produced in abundance. Stamen filaments, and the style of the stigma are cerise-pink. Anthers, and stigma lobes are white.


Epicactus Reward

Full petalled, wide-open blooms appear in abundance on this plant. Each grows between 18 and 23-centimetres (7 and 9-inches) wide. Colours change from pale yellow in the centre petals, to dark yellow outer ones.


Paul Fort, and Garland O’Barr crossed Epicactus Thorinne with Epicactus Madonna to create this hybrid. This is probably one of the most used parents in hybridising Epicacti.


Epicactus Royal Robe

Blooms above 23-centimetres (9-inches) wide make this an outstanding plant. Petals are broad, and ruffled, coloured white with orchid pink to purple edges.


A beautiful plant developed by the hybridist named Coolidge.


Epicactus San Marino

Mostly, this plant has flat growth that branches from the base. From the areoles, flowers, from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide, are produced. These blooms are red, with a touch of purple in the throat. In addition, broad, overlapping petals help to form a cup-shaped bloom. Adding to this, are the outer petals that are narrow, stiff, and radiating.


Epicactus Santa Barbara

The branches form a good shaped plant with their flat, hanging growth. Moreover, the blooms are 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide. Also, each petal has a dark red centre stripe, blending to light violet, then they fade to a white edge.


Theresa M. Monmonier was the hybridist responsible for this extravagant bloom. This plant looks very attractive in a hanging container.


Epicactus Vista Flame

These large, cup, and saucer shaped blooms bear radiating, overlapping petals that curve in at the tips. The whole flower is from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) from tip to tip. Also, all petals are fire engine red, produced on thick, flat, and triangular growth.


Bob, and Lois Burks of the California Epi Center Nursery registered this plant in 1983 for the hybridist, Harry Johnson, who crossed Heliocereus phyllanthiodes with Epicactus Hermosissimus to create this beauty.


Epicactus Vista Gold

Thick, flat branches grow well from the base to form a very attractive plant. Each spring it blooms readily, Flowers being from 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide. Inner petals are coloured pale lemon, with many outer petals of deep yellow. In the centre of the cup, and saucer -shaped blooms are pale green stamens.


Phyllis Fleschig created this spectacular plant by cross pollinating Epicactus Pistachio with Epicactus Reward. It was registered by Bob, and Lois Burks of the CaliforniaEpiCenterin 1982.

Epicactus Vive Rouge

This plant carries medium sized blooms of rich red with violet in the throat. Stamens fall to the bottom of the flower.


Epiphyllum Society of America adopted this name as the standard name for this hybrid. It is used extensively in creating new hybrids.

Epicactus Waikiki Rainbow

Branches are mostly flat, with some triangular growth at the base. These branches carry blooms that are 18 to 23-centimetres (7 to 9-inches) wide. Each bell-shaped bloom has many violet petals, with outer petals blending reddish-orange.


Because they branch strongly from the base, and eventually hang downwards, they make a good hanging container plant.


Epicactus Wanderlust

This plant branches strongly from the base with mostly flat growth, but with some triangular stems. Nevertheless, they are upright at first, but soon they become pendant. In spring, large blooms grow between 18 and 23-centimetres (7 and 9-inches) across. These are dark pink with a cherry throat. Each bloom has three rows of overlapping petals.


Originally, this plant was produced by Paul Fort, and Garland O’Barr. It was the product of a cross between an Epicactus Madonna’, and Epicactus Cup of Day.


Epicactus Wedding Bells

Most of the branches are flat, but some are three winged at first, becoming flat later. This hybrid branches from the base, sides, and tips. In addition, their petals are silvery-white with pink sepals. Although the flowers are only 7.5 to 13-centimetres (3 to 5-inches) across, they make up for their size with their immense number of blooms.


This plant probably has Disocactus sap in its veins, as its flower bud shape has the characteristic Disocactus shape.


Epicactus Wunderlust

Most stem growth on this plant is flat, and upright at first. Later, the growth becomes pendant. From borders of these branches appear medium sized pink blooms, growing from 13 to 18-centimetres (5 to 7-inches) wide. Each petal has a darker border as can be seen in the photograph.


Webpage History

Webpage posted May 2005