I live in the land of Asters and Chrysanthemums (i.e, New England), and this time of year the regional obsession is in full overload. In Denver, where I grew up, these fall staples just aren't as ubiquitous as they are here, and the profusion of mums has got me thinking about other plants that I could be obsessing about instead, like Cacti.
As the plants in the garden are waning, this is a perfect time to start looking for indoor opportunities to nurture a green thumb, and cactus collections are a great way to play with plants while reducing (as much as possible) the risk that you will kill something. Cacti come in all shapes and sizes and offer collectors the opportunity to play with color and shape in much the same way that an art collector might curate a collection of sculpture.
I've rounded up a collection of cactus links that will set you on your way to to a healthy little cactus obsession.
• 5 Cool Cacti Facts - Learn a little about interesting cactus plants and see some beautiful cacti photos.
• Cute Cactuses - This tumblr is full of cute cactus — I'd be surprised if you didn't want to cuddle up with a cactus after a few minutes here.
There are generally lots of places to buy cactus locally (look in local nurseries). Even the big box stores often have a selection to get you started, but if you want to try out something a bit more exotic, online resources may be the way to shop.
• Arizona Cactus - A huge selection of cacti - many of which come in 4" pots.
• Phoenix Desert Nursery - These are generally bigger specimens, so if you are limited on space, look elsewhere.
Creating an indoor cactus garden isn't too hard. Elsie and Emma share how they put together this cute tabletop garden over at a Beautiful Mess.
And if you want a slightly more retro look, gather some inspiration at the Blue Jay Blog, where live cactus is combined with dried florals.
If, however, you don't think that you can manage the real deal, here are a few ways to get your cacti fix without having to actually plant something.
Beautiful Cactus Wallpaper for your computer.
Full instructions for making your own Cactus Cupcakes.
(Images: Cactus Mart, A Beautiful Mess, Blue Jay Blog, HD Wallpaper Stop, and Alana Jones-Mann)