Alternative title: A Cactus called Pudding…Yes you read that right!


As I mentioned in my previous post, I recently left my job; a perk of that, aside from the fact you can moonwalk out of the office while swishing the two finger salute at the building, is that you may get a leaving card…and in special circumstances, you may even get a present! How amazing is that? It’s a celebration of you leaving the place, which means either people are happy that you’re leaving for greener pastures or that they’re happy to see the back of you as they think you’re a self-righteous prick with major halitosis.

I’m hoping mine was the  former…but I didn’t get a leaving card. In fact I’m starting to annoy the postman with my “whaddya mean there ain’t no card?!” whinges in the mornings (or maybe I really do have bad breath). He may just start avoiding the house entirely if this keeps up.

What I did get were a few hugs, one of the guys shed a few tears and a rather random ‘gift’ from my (now ex-) colleague, I will henceforth call said individual Fred. And I realise how that statement may be miscontrued, so can I just clarify –  it wasn’t a rude gift! Oh no…far from it.

“I have a pressie for you” said Fred, handing me a Tesco carrier bag.

“Oh how nice of – …….what the heck is that?”

“It’s a cactus!” I’m glad he was clear on that because I bloody wasn’t.

I looked in the bag, looked at Fred’s expectant face, looked back in the bag and said (in the most cheerful way I could) “oh…right….thank you”.

I can safely say that the cactus was one ugly looking sod, I already own a cactus which I think is the same species  (Echinocactus Grusonii) and know that it’s supposed to be a vibrant (healthy) green colour. This cactus was rather peaky looking to say the least, I’m pretty sure Fred was just emptying his garage in which case I should be impressed he gave me this rather than a tub of crusty paint and a rusty spanner.

“It’s looked like that for 18 months…not sure if it’s had a bit of frost or too much sun or what…but it’s like 6 years old or something, probably more” he explained.

“Uh-huh” I frowned.

Now, most people in their right minds would have thrown it in the skip as they moonwalked past – not me, I’m too much of a soft touch, or at least that’s what I like people to think. Really I have Frankenstein Complex… actually that means I’m afraid of robots who will one day take over the world and eat our brains and argh! ZOMBIE robots! Damn you Asimov!

What I mean is, I wanted to see if I could take a very sick looking cactus and make it healthy again. Call it curiosity…actually I called the cactus Pudding.

After hauling it’s sorry ass out the pot

Pudding 1

Look at this minging git!…

Pudding 2

….I’ve seen less scabby looking creatures on Jeremy Kyle!

It’s roots looked ok, given it’s age I expected more of them, but the main thing was that they were disease free and there were no signs of rot/fungus.

After Re-Potting

Pudding 3

Well, you can’t polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter….

Pudding 4

…Think this is Pudding’s ‘good’ side.

Aside from me wanting the whole “it’s alive” scenario (without electricity obviously given that plants don’t like that sort of shit), I haven’t thrown it because:

 – Despite it being that funny yellow colour, it isn’t squishy or blackened or anything else that could indicate rot…also, if it was rotten or something it would have keeled over in a mushy mess in the last few months rather than sit there for 18 months prior to finding it’s way to my place. Though it may be considering dying a death now that I’m trying to treat it; “gasp…nutrients in the soil? A bit of water? Is that indirect sunlight? GAH!”

 – It doesn’t smell…apparently funky smelling cacti (or plants in general probably) indicates a cacti coming to the end of it’s strange little existance. Yes I sniffed the cactus. Yes that takes a bit of skill given the spikes.

 – It is green in parts (yay Chlorophyll) so should be able to do the whole photosynthesis thing.

I do have other cacti/succulents so Pudding is quarantined for now and is being treated for pests/diseases…also I want to see if it roots in the new soil.

It’s never going to win a beauty contest, that’s for sure.

I will warn you now, there will be Pudding updates!

Anybody else been given weird leaving gifts?

R x