Wow is all I can really say about the Hyperbolic Crochet Cactus Garden. It’s such an amazing mix of textures and designs, and the realism is just incredible. The Institute for Figuring has been using crochet to demonstrate the mathematic concept of hyperbolics and the Cactus Garden is an offshoot of that project, combining mathematic principals with environmental concerns.
I have to admit the math is going right over my head, even though I tried to look it up, but I’m still blown away by the time and creativity that it would have taken to develop this exhibit. The garden was created by ten different artists who used California’s dessert landscape as their inspiration. You can learn more about the Crochet Cactus Garden through The Institute for Figuring and while you’re there check out their equally amazing Crochet Coral Reef. IFF Director Margaret Wertheim also has plenty of pictures of both projects posted on her Flickr pages.
above: A sample of the Crochet Coral Reef
I became curious about the kinds of plants people are crocheting after I saw this Sweet Amigurumi Cactus posted on Craftster by djonesgirl. I’m not that excited by crochet flowers, (although there’s plenty of them out there). They just scream 1960’s crochet to me, but I really like some of the leafy green stuff and the prickly cactuses.
My 4 Heads has this house plant pattern available in PDF format for a very reasonable price as well as several flower arrangements.
I know that houseplants probably don’t get much more low maintenance than the cactus, but imagine how easy this one would be to take care of. Ana Paula Rimoli, author of Amigurumi World: Seriously Cute Crochet has this Little Cactus pattern available for free on her blog. If you want it to be a bit more prickly you could try sticking toothpicks in it, or put it to work as a pincushion.