In Surakarta: A Greenhouse of Cacti and Succulents


In the city of Solo Taman Hayat’s Indra visited a plant nursery that is known for its richness of cacti and succulents, owned by one Mas Joyo. Joy’s Garden is a succulent nursery, known well to the growing niche of plants enthusiasts.

As plant enthusiasts ourselves, we look up to Mas Joyo for inspiration. On Indra’s opportunity to meet Mas Joyo, he asks burning gardening questions on Taman Hayat’s behalf. In this article, we share with you words and knowledge by Mas Joyo himself.

Words by Rachel. Photos by Indra.


Out of the many ways people find their way into the world of gardening, Mas Joyo found himself in the succulent business initially due to trends and profitability.  Like many of us did, he fell in love with the unique diversity of the succulent family, and this venture quickly turned into a hobby.

Mas Joyo started his journey in the year 2011 with adenium. Soon, he expanded his collection to include pachypodium and finally cacti, what he is best known for among the niche of plant enthusiasts.

Taman Hayat : How did you begin to become a plant nurserer?

Mas Joyo : I started because I wanted to sell popular plants and the business was good. As I started to import more variations of plants, I became more fascinated and fell in love with plants.

With one look at Joy’s Garden’s Instagram account, you’d be able to see a wealth of cacti species. To say this plant nursery is a dream of plant lovers is an understatement, especially for cacti enthusiasts.

Although many people own a cactus plant because of the belief that it’s relatively low maintenance, it indeed isn’t a simple job for Mas Joyo to cultivate his impressive collections. Questions related to plant maintenance were undoubtedly part of our conversation.


“Cacti maintenance is convenient. If you have a proper greenhouse, you can leave them from time to time. The greenhouse protects them from rain and heat. If you leave them, worst case, they’ll shrink.”

Mas Joyo : Cacti maintenance is convenient. If you have a proper greenhouse, you can leave them from time to time. The greenhouse protects them from rain and heat. If you leave them, worst case, they’ll shrink.

Taman Hayat : Do you think we need a greenhouse if we want to grow cacti?

Mas Joyo : If you’re just starting out and your cacti are not many, you can still manage without a greenhouse. You’ll need a proper greenhouse once you have many cacti, that’s when it’s not manageable without a greenhouse.

We sneaked a Google search and found various information on how many cacti species there are. One source, Britannica, stated that there are up to 2,000 species of cacti. We didn’t count, but there were many more cacti in Joy’s Garden than we were able to eyeball. Caring for different types of plants may be highly challenging, but the delight of seeing unique faces of succulents must be rewarding.


Taman Hayat : Do you have a favorite cactus?

Mas Joyo : The one I have the most of is Astro. I like Astro because they pollinate easily and I like Lophophora because they have funny shapes!

Taman Hayat : How long does it take for them to grow?

Mas Joyo : About 1-3 years, only then I make sales.

Taman Hayat : How many cacti have you sold?

Mas Joyo : By now, thousands.

As the visit come near to a close, we took the time to ask for tips on how to grow our own succulent garden.

Mas Joyo : Don’t wait, just keep tending your cacti. When you already have many cacti, get a greenhouse.

Taman Hayat : And what do you think the future holds for plants or cacti hobbies? Do you think it will keep growing?

Mas Joyo : I think the community will continue to grow. Maybe not as fast as it did at the beginning of the pandemic but now there are many communities that support hobby-based businesses. With a solid and healthy community, the plant community will surely grow.


Follow Mas Joyo on Instagram: @joys_garden