Today there are basically two large international organizations conducting research and conservation on succulent plants:

  • International Organization for Succulent Plant Study (IOS)
  • Sociedad Latinoamericana y del Caribe de Cactáceas y otras Suculentas (SLCCS)
    ( Latin American and Caribbean Society of Cactaceae and Other Succulents )

The IOS: In 1947 the Swiss gardener and cactus expert Hans Krainz (1906–1980) dealt with the idea of uniting existing national cacti organizations (for example, the German Cactus Society, the Austrian Cactus Society, and the Swiss Cactus Society) under a single umbrella organization, the European Cactus Society, while maintaining their independence. However, a first call, which had been sent by him at the end of 1947, found no resonance, just after the end of World War II.
In spring of 1950, a letter signed by Hans Krainz, Franz Buxbaum (A) and H. Michael Roan (GB) was sent by the Board of Trustees of the Scientific Fund of the Swiss Cactus Society to about 50 well-known succulent researchers and other botanists, which invited to the 1st International Congress of Succulent Researchers for 27. September 1950. The participants in this congress agreed in just a few days on a statute on which basis the IOS was founded on 30 September 1950 with the aim “to promote the study and conservation of succulent and allied plants and to encourage international co-operation amongst those interested in them".

This text is under revision.

Work going on

The SLCCS:
The Latin American and Caribbean Society of Cactus and Other Succulents was founded in 1989 and the official statutes were approved in Havana, Cuba, on the V. Latin American Congress of Botany in 1990. The mission of the SLCCS is to encourage and stimulate scientific research on cacti and other succulents in Latin America and the Caribbean, support initiatives for the conservation of these plants, disseminate the information generated from the studies carried out and contribute to the professional training of people interested in acquiring basic and applied knowledge about cacti and other Succulents.
To fulfill this mission, SLCCS sets the following objectives:

  • Involve people interested in the study and conservation of cacti and other succulents in Latin America in the activities of the Society, through the membership program.
  • Encourage the creation of national representations of the Society in each Latin American country.
  • Conduct periodic organizational meetings of the members of the Society.
  • Disseminate scientific information and general interest about these plants throughout Latin America.
  • Support local initiatives focused on the study and conservation of these plants.
  • Encourage the creation of botanical gardens and protected areas dedicated to the care and propagation of these plants.
Since September 2004, SLCCS has been offering a public electronic newsletter (Boletín), which is a very practical mass communication channel among people interested in the study and cultivation of cacti and other succulents in Latin America and elsewhere. Regrettably, this excellent service had to be temporarily suspended in 2013 due to staff shortages.



I O S

Austrocylindropuntia shaferi, San Lucas, Chuquisaca, Bolivia       ©I&R Mecklenburg

Austrocylindropuntia shaferi
San Lucas, Chuquisaca, Bolivia       ©I&R Mecklenburg

Lobivia bertraminiana, Iscayachi, Tarija, Bolivia  ©I&R Mecklenburg

Lobivia bertraminiana
Iscayachi, Tarija, Bolivia  ©I&R Mecklenburg

Echinopsis schickendantzii (Trichocereus shaferi), Chuquisaca, Bolivia  ©I&R Mecklenburg

Echinopsis schickendantzii (Trichocereus shaferi)
Chuquisaca, Bolivia  ©I&R Mecklenburg

Espostoa guentheri, Nuevo Mundo, Santa Cruz, Bolivia       ©I&R Mecklenburg

Espostoa guentheri
Nuevo Mundo, Santa Cruz, Bolivia       ©I&R Mecklenburg