My name is Marlon Câmara Machado, I was born on May 5 1975, thus I am 23 years old. I live and work in Salvador, capital of the Brazilian state of Bahia, in northeastern Brazil. I am a University graduate with a degree in Computer Science, and I work in a Telecommunications Company named Trilha, in the area of Computer Telephony. At present I am working in the development of systems to integrate Computer Telephony with the Internet. In my leisure time I am an addicted cactophile!
I moved to Salvador when I enrolled in the University. Before that, I lived most of the time in the city of Cruz das Almas, which is relatively close to Salvador. My family still lives there, and that is where my cactus collection is located - which I visit approximately twice per month in order to take care of my plants.
My father owns a farm close to the city, where some species of native cacti grow wild - six species in fact. From childhood I have been fascinated by these strange and beautiful plants. My passionate interest began when I saw my first Melocactus during a vacation trip to the city of Caldas do Jorro (a watering spa), in the interior of Bahia. I began to cultivate cacti seriously eight years ago.
Due to my study years at the University - and now because of work requirements - I have not had sufficient time to expand my collection and travel to the interior of Bahia in order to search for locations of cacti and observe and study them in habitat. However, during this time I obtained - and devoured - many cactus books, and I am gradually learning about these wonderful plants. I plan to make many more trips to the hinterlands of my country in the near future in order to more closely study plants in habitat.
I am a collector of cacti, and I love their magnificent forms and their ease of cultivation (I am so accustomed to cultivating cacti and other succulent plants that, without any exaggeration, I am not able to cultivate more demanding plants!). But my curiosity is not satisfied in just cultivating them: I would like to know and understand their origins, ecology, phylogeny, morphology, anatomy and physiology. I would also like to investigate their relationships with the environment. All told, I would like to examine all the scientific aspects that help to explain these wonderful and formidable creations of nature.
The fact is, I love botany, not only as it applies to cacti, but in the most general way. But despite this love, I didn't study this discipline at the University. But I am not sorry for my choices. I love Computer Science and I have great comfort in this area that by now is my "bread-winner". But I don't intend to stay in the profession of Computer Scientist for a long time. I plan to study Botany in the close future. My intention is to be a researcher of the family Cactaceae. Although I am already studying a little in preparation, as I have previously completed advanced University courses, I know that a good academic preparation is extremely important for the accomplishment of a scientific activity.
I am not a specialist in Brazilian Cactaceae,
to the contrary, I am still far of this status! I know only a little about
the native flora - and this fact annoys me - I know more about the cacti
of the United States and Mexico - due to the marvelous literature published
concerning them - than about the native cacti of my own country. I have
really only discovered them in the last couple of years. But I am studying
hard to learn about the native plants of Brazil. Thus, I consider myself
an apprentice, and this site is a way for me to study and learn about Brazilian
cacti - and also as a way to share the knowledge that I am gathering with
other members of the Cactus & Succulent Community.