Plant addicts beware: The Cactus Mart will feed your addiction
I have a cactus problem. Specifically, the problem is I keep acquiring them. I've built extra shelves in two rooms of Casa Joshua Tree to accomodate my growing obsession. The best place near Joshua Tree to feed my new addiction is a quirky little place called The Cactus Mart.
Nestled in Morongo Valley, you can't miss its big yellow sign along Highway 62. Locals and tourists both find this a worthy stop on any weekend itinerary, especially if the food tent is serving up fry bread and tacos (select magical sundays only). The Mart has an art gallery, two green houses, all kinds of native plants (not just cactus), and a fish pond. The staff is friendly and knowledgable, and will happily consult with you about which plant would best fit your needs. They offer landscape consulting too, which I'm planning to utilize when I redo my backyard lounge area.
My favorite part of the Mart is the "Dig Ur Own" cactus bar. For .59 a pop, you can pluck tiny cactus seedlings from their trays with giant tongs. I've given them as party favors and gifts, but most often I end up keeping them because I get too attached on the car ride home. For an extra back or two, you can pick out an equally teensy-tiny pot to outfit your new lil' buddy.
When you visit, wear sunscreen, sunglasses, a big hat, and bring your water bottle. Don't forget to say hi to Butch and Sundance, the resident tabby cats.
Cactus Mart is open 7 days a week, 8am-5pm at 49889 Twentynine Palms Highway, Morongo Valley, CA.