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Welcome to the Southampton & District Branch of the British Cactus and Succulent Society


August Meeting - 7th August

At our next meeting on Tuesday 7 August we are going to trial a new idea, by holding a Plant Focus Evening at which we will focus on two very popular genera, Euphorbia and Mammillaria.

We would like everyone to bring along as many of these plants as possible from their collections, large or small, and we will have a detailed look at the many species available and hold discussions about them. We will talk about which are the fast and easy species, and which are more of a challenge in cultivation. We will talk about the slow growing types, and the best cultivation techniques for the more difficult and demanding ones. Minimum temperatures, compost preferences, watering requirements and all other aspects of cultivation will be discussed. We will also talk about the best places to acquire plants or seeds, the best nurseries in the UK and elsewhere, whether you plan to visit or to order by post or online. We will also look at the range of literature available that covers these plants, and will have a large selection of books etc at the meeting for everyone to look at to decide if they want to seek them out, or maybe just to borrow some of the relevant titles from our Branch library.

The success of the new Plant Focus Evenings will largely depend on whether everyone brings along enough plants from their collections, and obviously the larger the number and selection of plants at the meeting, the better! So please make a special effort to bring along as many plants of Euphorbia and Mammillaria as possible to the August meeting, so that we have a broad selection of species to talk about. If this first Focus Evening is a success and is enjoyed by the membership we will consider holding further such meetings in the future.

Plants for the Table Show classes in August are Echinopsis Group, Agave Group, and Flowering Plant. Please make a special effort to support the Table Show this month. Further details about pot size limits etc can be found elsewhere on the website, or on the printed branch programme.

Monthly Meetings

The Southampton and District branch holds regular meetings on the first Tuesday of each month, at Saint James' Church Hall, Church Hill (A27), West End (SO30 3LA). The Hall is located on the A27, about one mile west of junction 7 of the M27. Access to the hall car park is from Hatherell Close - if this car park is full, you can also go round the corner and use the main church car park which can be entered from West End Road. There is no charge for attending meetings and visitors are just as welcome as members. In addition, the Branch takes part in shows and displays at other venues throughout the year.

Each monthly meeting starts at 7:30pm and finishes at 10:00pm, with a break for refreshments. The meetings generally consist of a speaker and slide show, or a practical demonstration or talk. A good selection of plants are available for purchase, and there is also an extensive library of books which can be borrowed on a monthly basis. There is also a table show, where members bring along plants from a nominated category or genus.


Each month, the branch publishes a newsletter. These contain summaries of the talks given at meetings and also provide additional information about forthcoming events. You can download these newsletters (in PDF format) here

50th Anniversary

2004 was a very special year for the Branch since it marked our 50th Anniversary. We held a special birthday convention to celebrate this occasion. If you are interested in the history of the branch, click here.


The branch holds an extensive collection of books which can be borrowed by members. Click here for details of the branch library and for a list of the titles available.


The branch has recently commissioned an enamel badge which allows members to show their affiliation to the branch. Click here for further details.

Additional Information & Links

Click here for some general information on the cultivation of cacti and succulents. It's also fun to try and raise plants from seed.
Click here for links to other Internet websites containing useful information on cacti and succulents.

Photo Galleries

Photos of plants, of some of the events we took part in during recent years, and of the 2004 National Show (which featured some of the best plants in the country).
Gallery 1   Gallery 2  
Events 1   Events 2   Events 3
2004 BCSS National Show   1  2  3  4  5  6  7
2005   2006   2007
2016 BCSS National Show   1  2  3  4  5  6 
ELK Conferences   ELK 2012  ELK 2013

2018 Programme

Date Subject/Speaker Table Show
2nd Jan Members' Mini Talks - a number of short talks by branch members Echinocactus Group, Aloe Group, Plant in Flower
6th Feb Brazil - The Land of the Uebelmannia (Cliff Thompson) Eriosyce Group, Crassulaceae Group, Plant in Flower
6th Mar Peru 2017 (Ian Woolnough) Opuntia Group, Haworthia Group, Plant in Flower
3rd Apr What I Saw Last Winter - Mexico & Madagascar (Paul Klaassen) Rebutia Group, Gasteria Group, Plant in Flower
1st May Cultivation & Propagation Workshop With demonstrations and discussions Cacti (3 plants), Succulents (3 plants), Plant in Flower
12th May Display / Plant Sales @ Sparsholt College (Countryside Day) 9:30am - 4:30pm
5th Jun Travels in Ethiopia (Bob Potter) Parodia Group, Euphorbia Group, Plant in Flower
30th Jun Branch visit to South West Cactus Mart, Portishead, Bristol BS20 7DD  
3rd Jul Cultivation of Cacti & Succulents (Terry Smale) Gymnocalycium Group, Stapelia Group, Plant in Flower
22nd Jul Branch Garden Party - hosted by Alice Jankovec, West Moors, Dorset  
24-26 Jul Display / Plant Sales @ New Forest Show, Brockenhurst 9am - 6pm
28th Jul Branch visit to Oxford Branch Show - Old Mill Hall, Grove, Wantage OX12 7LB  
7th Aug Plant Focus Evening Mammillaria & Euphorbia Echinopsis Group, Agave Group, Plant in Flower
4th Sep Succulent Senecios (John Foster) Mammillaria Group, Mesemb Group (exc Lithops), Plant in Flower
8th Sep Display / Plant Sales @ Romsey Show, Broadlands 9:00am - 6:00pm
2nd Oct Gasterias in Habitat & Culture (Tony Roberts) Echinocereus Group, Lithops Subgroup, Plant in Flower
6th Nov Around The Collection (Stuart Riley) Copiapoa Group, Echeveria Subgroup, Plant in Flower
4th Dec Annual General Meeting, followed by Christmas Social  

Regular Meetings (@ St James)
Shows, Displays and other Events
Note: Amendments are very rare, but if they are necessary, they will be posted on this website. If travelling from a distance, please check here (or with the secretary) a day or two before the event.

Monthly Table Show
The Table Show is held at most branch meetings, see table above for details of the eligible cactus and succulent classes for each month. The classes are divided into Open Section (unlimited pot size), Intermediate Section (4.5in pot size limit) and Novice Section (3.5in pot size limit). For every table show, there is also a class for Any cactus or succulent plant in flower (unlimited pot size).

Members can enter multiple entries in a class, if they wish. The novice classes are open to all branch members who have not previously won the Novice Section.

The classes will be judged according to the 10th edition of the BCSS Handbook of Shows. The decision of the judge will be final.

Trophies will be awarded at the end of the year to the persons gaining the most points over the year in the different classes. In addition, the Ladies Cup will be awarded to the lady member gaining the most points across all classes during the year.

Contact Details

To obtain further information or for correspondence, please contact:
David Neville, 
Tel: 023 8055 1173
Mob: 07974 191354
Email: davnev at btopenworld.com
(replace "at" with @ when emailing)
Vinay Shah, 
Tel: 023 80261989 
Email: info at southampton.bcss.org.uk
(replace "at" with @ when emailing)

British Cactus and Succulent Society Calendar of Events.