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   Undertoad  Monday Oct 3 12:09 PM

10/3/2005: Amazing cactus



"Did you know there was a Botany Photo of the Day?" Magilla asked while sending this image along. Noted.

IotD is proud to be one of the net's "X of the X" sites, and this "brain cactus" makes the day because it's beautiful. In a wider shot, it's not quite so beautiful, but still interesting:



BPotD explains that the brains are a "morphological variant of the species Mammillaria elongata DC., or golden star cactus. The distinct morphology of this and other brain cacti, known as cristate or crested growth, is caused by an apical meristem gone awry."

I hate it when my apical meristem goes awry.

By the way, some more techie jargon! The first image up there is another one of those images that really is hard on the JPEG format. The original from the BPotD was over 300K in size - massive. It could only reasonably compress to about half that size for the above display. (I rehost the images locally so I don't use people's bandwidth, and so that the IotD remains over time even when people's hosted images go away.) It's because of the many colors and many small but detailed shapes in the image; they don't compress well.



Elspode  Monday Oct 3 04:57 PM

Well worth the bandwidth, UT. Thanks, as always, for bringing such a bounty of interesting stuff to look at to our otherwise rather normal lives!



barefoot serpent  Monday Oct 3 05:16 PM

Saguaro elongata



glatt  Monday Oct 3 05:25 PM

The brain cactus variant here doesn't seem like a very efficient way of gathering sunlight. I wonder how well this one would prosper compared to a golden star cactus that hasn't had its apical meristem go awry? Would it thrive as well?



capnhowdy  Monday Oct 3 05:36 PM

Looks like a big bowl of moldy dog jakes.
JUST JOKING!!!!!
Very interesting, even if its meristem is awry. We rarely have botanical images. Me likes. Thanks guys.



BigV  Monday Oct 3 05:42 PM

Reminded me of this pic of a bit of moss taken this weekend camping.



Cyclefrance  Monday Oct 3 06:36 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Undertoad
BPotD explains that the brains are a "morphological variant of the species Mammillaria elongata DC., or golden star cactus. The distinct morphology of this and other brain cacti, known as cristate or crested growth, is caused by an apical meristem gone awry."
Brain Cactus, eh.... Makes you think....


linknoid  Monday Oct 3 06:39 PM

We had some of those in our back yard, they weren't molded into a hemispherical shape, but they were the same kind of cactus. I didn't discover them until we had lived there 3 or 4 years, since they were hidden in a long rectangular planter buried in the ground. They survived pretty well without any human intervention in Fresno weather. Just a big bulky mass of them, there was no real way to seperate them (the spines are soft and small enough you can sort of handle them if you're careful).



xoxoxoBruce  Monday Oct 3 07:38 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyclefrance
Brain Cactus, eh.... Makes you think....



xoxoxoBruce  Monday Oct 3 07:40 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by glatt
The brain cactus variant here doesn't seem like a very efficient way of gathering sunlight. I wonder how well this one would prosper compared to a golden star cactus that hasn't had its apical meristem go awry? Would it thrive as well?
Good way to conserve water though.... and keep dangly bits from being nibbled.


Tanalia  Monday Oct 3 07:47 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by glatt
The brain cactus variant here doesn't seem like a very efficient way of gathering sunlight. I wonder how well this one would prosper compared to a golden star cactus that hasn't had its apical meristem go awry? Would it thrive as well?
Sunglight is usually not a problem in the common cactus climates. The shape does, however, appear to be rather efficient for catching/holding moisture.

[editted] Hehe, guess Bruce and I were typing at about the same time...


Trilby  Monday Oct 3 07:54 PM

um...isn't anybody going to say that barefoot serpent's pic looks like a cactus with a giant hard-on? No one?

god, i need to write my paper. I never will, though. I'll just keep looking at giant cacti and chew gum. I suck so bad.



BigV  Monday Oct 3 07:56 PM

That cactus doesn't have a hard-on, it has a prick.



capnhowdy  Monday Oct 3 08:01 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV
That cactus doesn't have a hard-on, it has a prick.
Now THAT was good.


capnhowdy  Monday Oct 3 08:02 PM

prolly not too snuggly either.



capnhowdy  Monday Oct 3 08:04 PM

hey Bri......
I'll do it for you:

A PAPER



Trilby  Monday Oct 3 08:10 PM

obviously no one is taking me seriously. what a surprise. I NEED a goddamn paper, motherhubberds! Not some witty banter on what or what may not be a vegetable penis! GET IT TOGETHER! I need an A, people! AN A!!!!

Oh, yeah...the subject is Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf---do any of you worthless pups have ANYthing on this?



Undertoad  Monday Oct 3 08:15 PM

The Edward Albee play?

(edited several times through my confusion)



Trilby  Monday Oct 3 08:18 PM

ah, ut...I love you. the play. the freaking PLAY. I'm supposed to have an opinion on theme (illusion vs. reality--check) dramatic action, conflicts and structure. HELP! I am too stupid to know how to do this-------actually, am too old to be able to format it correctly--last paper i wrote--long hand was acceptable. God.



Undertoad  Monday Oct 3 08:20 PM

I can't really help... it's been way too long since I read it.

I saw his latest two plays by the Philadelphia Theatre Company! They were great!



Trilby  Monday Oct 3 08:22 PM

well--SHIT!

I need HELP, damn it! HELP!



capnhowdy  Monday Oct 3 08:25 PM

maybe your teacher could give you another subject. Like penicacti.

Appologies in advance.
I could never write anything that I was TOLD to write.



Trilby  Monday Oct 3 08:30 PM

well, you've both been really helpful.

NOT.

When the children of Ohio score really effing low on all the standardized tests, it will be ME to blame. ME, do you hear me, ME! all for lack of virginia woolf support. great.



xoxoxoBruce  Monday Oct 3 09:22 PM

Google is your friend.



barefoot serpent  Tuesday Oct 4 03:12 PM

ugh... Virginia Woolf?


couldn't you do Anais Nin?



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