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Rhipsalis in vivarium


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Posted by Slaytonp on May 06, 2003 at 12:34:38:

I like a variety of textures and forms in the vivariums, so when planning the new bow front tank, I remembered the interesting Rhipsalis species. I was once a cacti nut and grew over 2,000 species, including a lot from seed from the 1960 Ritter expedition in South America. These included many of the epiphytic rain forest cacti, including many species of Rhipsalis. (I think there are 60 or so species). These have a variety of interesting forms-- my favorite, R. paradoxa looks like a straw that has been pinched in an alternating pattern along the length, but I've been unable to find this for sale anywhere. They have small but often pretty blooms followed by red or white berries. Most of the species are spineless or have only soft spines and the areolas are either without bristles or the bristles are very soft, so there's no danger of poking a frog. (Those are the things that get you when you pet the platyopuntia called "lambs ears" that looks so soft). I've had R. trigona in the imitator tank for about a year just pegged to the cocos fiber with a little sphagnum around it and it has done fine, growing slowly and adding something different.

There are photos of a lot of species on rhipsalis.com. Bob Moleys bobmolys.com lists a lot of cuttings-- very cheap.

There are more photos in the photo gallery (slaytonp Rhipsalis), but here's one called R. quellebambensis. It resembles mistletoe somewhat, as several species do.

Patty


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