Arow and I have been studying succulents since childhood, patiently breeding them from seed with natural growing methods. Since 2013, I have started the agricultural enterprise Mondocactus, which now absorbs all my time and with which I propagate the rarest plants, to sell them through the mondocactus website and by participating in the most important industry events.
The highlights of the production are ultradecennial specimens of slow-growing plants such as Ariocarpus, Turbinicarpus and Pelecyphora. No less interesting are specimens of the most common varieties of Mammillaria, Echinocereus and Ferocactus bred on natural soils. In recent years I have been working on less demanding varieties such as Arrojadoa, Pygmeocereus, Melocactus, and numerous succulent species different from cacti.
Succulents ‘au naturel’
Mondocactus production is distinguished by being implemented with natural techniques, using mineral substrates low in organic components and limiting the use of pesticides as much as possible. Forcing is not implemented in heated greenhouses, and grafting is occasionally practiced for the production of mother plants and seeds. The use of nitrogen fertilizers and irrigation is also modest in order to curb the overdevelopment of plants at the expense of their natural characteristics.
Famous are the Mexican cactus specimens that I have been growing for more than two decades on pure marl, a type of friable rock similar to that in which the plants grow in nature.
The Mondocactus website, still in the establishment stages, offers an evolving catalog of plants for sale and a collection of informational pages detailing techniques used in growing succulents.
by Andrea Cattabriga