Tentacle pot hechtia swap-out

Repotting is part and parcel of gardening. I admit, I’m not on top of it the way I should be, and plants routinely outgrow the pots they’re in. I’m easily sidetracked, and there always seem to be more urgent projects to tackle. Last weekend, though, I finally followed through on a few overdue projects. This post describes one of them; I'll talk about the others in a separate post.

Tentacle pot swap-out

In 2018, I planted a Hechtia guatemalensis in a reef-textured Tentacle Pot I bought from Arizona artist Diana Moulds. I was hoping the leaves would hang down gracefully, mirroring the tentacles.

Hechtia guatemalensis in my Diana Moulds Tentacle Pot right after planting in 2018

Unfortunately, this pairing never quite worked. The hechtia became completely root-bound, making it virtually impossible to water it thoroughly. As a result, the plant pretty much stopped growing, and the leaves began to desiccate from the tips up.

Not wanting to abandon my hechtia idea, I decided to swap out the Hechtia guatemalensis for one that might be better suited for pot life: Hechtia pretiosa. It’s a smaller plant overall. It's also one of only a few hechtia species that form stolons – pups attached to the mother plant on slender stems as opposed to tightly clinging to the base. In a hanging pot, I’m hoping, the stolons will eventually extend out beyond the edge of the pot and hang down.

Hechtia pretiosa with stolons

I bought the plant from Brian Kemble at the 2022 San Francisco Cactus & Succulent Society sale. I still have the hand-written tag:

It looks the seed was collected by Kelly Griffin in May 2017 east of the town of Xichú, Mexico on the road to Rio Verde. How’s that for provenance?

Here’s Hechtia pretiosa in its new home:

The new pairing looks good if I say so myself. Although I really do need to reattach the tentacle pieces that broke off when the pot got whacked.

Diana Moulds makes all kinds of cool planters, hanging and free-standing. Check out her creations on Facebook and Instagram

Diana's old e-commerce website, TentacleArts.com, has been down for a while. If you're interested in buying one of her creations, get in touch with her via Facebook or Instagram


Hechtia vs. dyckia: I often get asked what the difference is between hechtias and dyckias. They do look similar, at least superficially, but they're actually quite different. Check out this post I wrote last year ago for more details.

© Gerhard Bock, 2023. All rights reserved. To receive all new posts by email, please subscribe here.


  1. A perfect pairing, Gerhard! I'm changing out the contents of pots one by one as well but none of mine are anywhere near as interesting.

  2. I love your repot, but I just can not put up with the sharpness of either Dyckia or Hechtia.


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