EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – The El Paso desert is known for its native desert plants and a member of a local organization has been using the natural storm water to water thousands of cacti in his garden.

As rain poured throughout the Sun City this past week, a member of the El Paso Cactus and Rock Club has been collecting fresh water from the sky that fell into his gutters down to his tubs. Just to feed his very own green cactuses as well as the rest of his garden.

“So we get water running down from the hills, and we are using approximately a hundred thousand gallons a year from the storm water.” 

He’s spent 20 years rescuing cactuses in the desert in areas such as where there’s construction. 

Member of the El Paso Cactus Rock Club, Pete Beste, informs us, a cactus doesn’t need that much water and in fact too much water can kill a cactus.  

“One thing that’s kind of surprising, probably, is that we lose cacti with sunburn, meaning that they get too much sun.  And that of course is kind of hot for cacti,” Beste said.   

Although you’ll come across cacti in New Mexico and Arizona, the environment in Texas is better.

“The Franklin Mountains are very good for cacti. Mountain regions are better for cacti than the plain desert, because where we are here, there’s a lot of cacti.”    

In spring,  the El Paso Cactus and Rock Club hosts a garden tour where you can pick out your own cactus; big or small. 

“You know there are different species and lots of them. So, we have the native ones, we have the ones from Mexico, and from South America. Of course, cacti naturally only live on the American continent.”   

Beste encourages people to have more cacti in their landscape since they last longer and are more resilient against the El Paso weather.

The organization meets every first Saturday each month at 9:30 a.m. with a ‘Cactus 101’  meeting at the El Paso Gather Center located in Memorial park on the 3000 block of Grant Street. 

To find out more about Cacti in the Sun City. Check out their website at http://www.elpasodesert.com/epcrc/

Facebook EPCRC page.

As for plant rescue assistance, call Peter Beste at (915) 755-3558 or email him at prbeste@att.net

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