Walther Haage

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Walther Haage in the cactus house
Walther Haage with Golden Cactus 1990
The Golden Cactus 1990

Walther Max Haage (born November 27, 1899 , † April 22, 1992 in Erfurt ) was a German gardener , botanist and non-fiction author. Its official botanical author's abbreviation is " W. Haage ".

Live and act

Walther Haage was the son of Ferdinand Haage and great-grandson of the founder of the Erfurt nursery Kakteen-Haage Friedrich Adolph Haage . He initiated and financed numerous cactus expeditions up to the Second World War , including those of Alberto Vojtěch Frič , Hans Wilhelm Viereck and Curt Backeberg . After the founding of the GDR, he was increasingly exposed to state reprisals. In 1972 he was the last of the Erfurt mail order gardeners to hand over the family business to the state. He lost his job and from then on concentrated on his scientific work, exchanged letters with international cactus scientists and began to publish his extensive knowledge. He became known as the author of books on growing and caring for cacti . His most famous work is the cactus lexicon cacti from A to Z . In 1990 the International Organization for Succulent Research (IOS) awarded him the Cactus d'Or for his life's work .

Walther Haage married Lotte Söhlemann (1906–2001) in 1928. The children Margarete (1929–2015), Ingeburg (* 1931), Helga (* 1932) and Hans-Friedrich (* 1942) emerged from the marriage. His son Hans-Friedrich Haage reprivatised the nursery after the political change in 1990.


Taxa named after Haage

The genus Haageocereus Backeb was named in his honor . the plant family of the cactus family (Cactaceae). The following plant species were also named after him:


  • Cacti . The world of plants, volume 4. Folkwang-Auriga: Friedrichssegen 1930.
  • Euphorbia . The world of plants, volume 3. Folkwang-Auriga: Friedrichssegen 1931.
  • Joy with cacti . Neumann: Radebeul 1954.
  • Cactus stars - the astrophytes . Neumann: Radebeul-Berlin 1957; Astromeister: private edition 2003.
  • Caring for beautiful cacti properly . Neumann: Radebeul 1962.
  • The practical cactus book in color . Neumann: Radebeul 1961.
  • Cacti from AZ - the cactus lexicon . Neumann: Radebeul 1981; Quelle & Meyer, Heidelberg / Wiesbaden 1986; Anaconda, Cologne 2008.


Web links

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