Sacramento Cactus & Succulent Society Show wrap-up

This past weekend, the Sacramento Cactus & Succulent Society held its 54th Annual Show & Sale. I was helping out on both days, but because of a bad cold that slowed me down, I didn’t take as many photos as I otherwise would have. Still, I’m sure you’ll get a fairly good idea of what a show like ours is all about.

Much to the organizers’ relief, a line started to form at the gate well before the doors opened to the public at 9am. Countless hours of volunteer work go into a show like this, and the biggest reward is a large crowd—especially if they spend liberally.


Sale tables with plants from vendors from Northern and Central California filled the courtyard at the Shepard Garden and Arts Center. I thought the selection was particularly nice this year. No matter what your favorite group of succulents or cacti is, you were sure to find something to your liking.


Many of the cacti on Bill Munkacsy’s tables (Planta Seca) were in bloom, drawing visitors like like moths to a flame.




Nick Wilkinson (GROW Nursery) had brought a large variety of interesting plants from Cambria, ranging from succulents to cacti to caudiciforms. My find of the day was a rare Agave pumila at a very fair price.



But what would be plants without pots to put them in? Three vendors were selling containers. One of the was Mark Muradian, one of my favorite potters, whose table I inexplicably forgot to photograph. (Blame it on my cold.) Mark will give a presentation at the Sacramento Cactus & Succulent Society later in the year, and I’ll take photos of his stunning pottery then.

The second pottery vendor was Connie Esquibel. Here whimsical face pots have quite a following and once again proved to be very popular.



The third vendor of containers was Donna Taylor (Melted Bottle) whose planters made of wine and liquor bottles are always a standout.



Donna also had wall pockets and rusty scoops for sale:


As you may remember, Donna Taylor and her husband Keith teach pottery workshops out of their house in Fairfield.

The juried cactus and succulent show was set up inside the Shepard Garden and Arts Center. As always, the caliber of plants entered in the show was very high. I didn’t photograph every single entry, but here are a few photos to give you an idea of what there was to see.




Aloe ramosissima


Euphorbia unispina


Euphorbia inermis


“Cowabunga Dude” by Mara Aditajs, winner in the Dish Garden category

The best-in-class winners were displayed on the stage.


These two were my favorites:


Adenium arabicum


Euphorbia bupleurifolia, Best Euphorbia and Best in Show

In the east room, five themed shadow boxes were on display, interpreting this year’s motto “Succulent Samba.”


Winning shadowbox by the Dickey family


Runner up by Candy Suter

If you live in the Sacramento area and missed the Sacramento Cactus & Succulent Society Show, you’ll get another chance in two weeks: The Carmichael Cactus & Succulent Society will hold their annual show and sale on May 17 and 18, 2014 at Carmichael Park. Click here for more info.


  1. 54th annual? Wow. Looks to be many fine plants available for those lucky enough to attend. You'll be sharing photos of your purchases I hope?

    1. Yep, the Sacramento Cactus and Succulent Society was founded in 1960.

      I'll have a post about new plant purchases very soon. I picked up an order from Village Nurseries today as well, including an Agave pygmae 'Dragon Toes', Aloe 'Erik the Red' and Beschorneria yuccoides 'Flamingo Glow'.

  2. Love that Euphorbia unispina. Gorgeous.

  3. Some great stuff here, and others that aren't my thing. With more south-facing windows I'd be growing Euphorbias like these in a second! Fantastic!

  4. Sounds like a really fun event.

    1. It was. But with a raging cold, I'm sure I was babbling even more incoherently than usual :-).

  5. The event looks really fun and that euphorbia looks like a miniature group of trunked cycads! Hope you're feeling much better now :)

    1. I have two small Euphorbia bupleurifolia, and I'm hoping to one day have specimens like the best in show. They do look like miniature cycads, or palm trees!

  6. I caught my breath with that best in show E. bupleurifolia. It must have been really lovely in person. Looks like a fun show!

    1. It was the kind of specimen you normally only see in photos. Perfect in every respect.

  7. Sure was a fun show and sale. Such a bummer that you were sick!

    1. This cold hit me like a sledgehammer. It took me almost another week to get over it. What did you buy?


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