Probably the most frequent and straightforward method of propagation is stem cuttings. Stem cuttings are an effective method for multiplying many cacti. Stem cuttings from an existing plant are removed, then left to calluse and dry out. Eventually, the cuttings will begin to take root from the cut end and grow into a new plant.
Some cacti that are frequently multiplied via stem cuttings include:
- Prickly pears or opuntia
- Collapsed cactus
- Globular and pincushion cacti
Cacti can grow in water, right?
It’s time to get your cutting ready for planting in a pot once it has dried! Cactus propagation can potentially be done in water, just like with other houseplants, but it’s not a very usual procedure because they thrive in soil.
Your brand-new cutting will require excellent drainage to survive, much like other cacti (unless it’s a jungle cactus like the Christmas cactus). The roots of cacti have not developed to become used to extended wet periods. They enjoy a cool splash, but the soil shouldn’t be prone to being wet or humid afterward; instead, it should immediately dry out again.
It’s not too difficult to spot an excellent cactus soil because it will be grippy and contain little to no potting soil at all. You can either purchase a prepared cactus soil combination or create your own by mixing 1 part potting soil, 1 part perlite, and 1 part orchid bark (not too gritty) for your cutting.
As far as planters go, as long as they have proper drainage, you should be set to go. Standard plastic nursery containers are excellent, but some cactus growers like to use clay planters to provide even more drainage. Water can really evaporate through the walls of this substance since it is porous.
Advice: Visit the article on planting succulents indoors for further details on how to grow succulents like cacti.
Do you grow cacti in soil or water?
Cacti are known for their capacity to endure in extremely dry conditions, such as deserts. However, these robust plants are frequently kept indoors as houseplants. You could try to root your own cacti if you already have a few and desire more without paying any money.
Can cacti grow roots in water? A form of succulent called a cactus can take root in either water or soil. While many cacti will also root in water, other kinds will root better in dirt. You can attempt growing extra plants without having to buy them if you try roots your cactus in water.
There is no assurance that any cactus will thrive in water or soil; occasionally, the conditions are simply not right for the plant. The good news is that roots your cactus in water is simple to do and has a strong probability of working.
Can you grow cacti from damaged ones?
As long as the damaged component is otherwise healthy, a broken cactus arm or stem segment can be used to grow a new cactus. If your cactus has spikes, never forget to wear protective gloves. Until the ends of the plant piece harden and start to callus, allow it to sit in a cool, shaded area for about a week.
Can you plant a portion of cactus that has been chopped off?
A loved cactus plant might quickly lose a portion due to overly active kids, scavenging animals, an accidental bump, or an unplanned incident. You need not worry if it occurs to you because you are not required to discard the chopped piece.
Even if the main plant can still survive if a portion of its stem is lost, it may seem wasteful to toss the broken piece and ignore the rest.
Can you then cut a chunk off of a cactus and plant it? Yes is the clear-cut response. Cuttings can be used to grow a sizable number of cacti species. Hedgehog, prickly pear, and branching columnar cacti like the night-blooming cereus are a few of the common cactus species that are typically reproduced via cuttings.
Don’t discard the broken piece if your cactus accidently breaks off a portion of it. Instead, replant it from seed and let it grow.
How do you re-root a cactus fragment?
Large desert cactus, such as the prickly pear (Opuntia spp. ), can be rooted either indoors or outdoors in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 3b through 11. Usually, smaller desert plants are rooted in flower pots. One-third to one-half of the pad or stem should be buried, bottom end down, in the potting media after making a small hole in it. Place in a warm environment with filtered light that is bright. Wait to water the plant until the roots start to form.
Where should cacti be chopped to spread?
If you want indoor plants that practically care for themselves, succulents and cactus plants are the ideal choice.
As detailed here, stem or leaf cuttings can be used to readily propagate the majority of cacti and succulents. Always remove entire segments from cacti with segmented stems (such as Christmas cacti and prickly pears), as cuttings don’t divide segments in half.
Aloes, haworthias, and agaves are clump-forming succulents that can be divided by simply removing the plant from its container and slicing the rootball. Numerous Mammillaria and Echinopsis cacti can be separated, or individual heads can be removed and used as cuttings.
In our No Fuss video guide, Kevin Smith of Gardeners’ World Magazine demonstrates how to use cactus plants to make a visually appealing display. Kevin discusses the benefits of using salad tongs to handle cacti, the best compost to use, and how to make attractive mulch.
Select a healthy stem that is at least 10 cm long and use snips to cleanly cut it off. When handling spiky cacti, use tongs. Remove entire leaves from plants without stems by hand; don’t chop them off. Until the cut surfaces have healed over, leave cuttings on a window sill.
After heavily watering, set the pot on a warm ledge that’s preferable out of the sun. Cuttings of succulents or cacti shouldn’t be put in propagators or covered with plastic bags.
Watch the cutting and moisten the compost when it feels dry. The majority of cactus and succulent cuttings take a month or less to root, although new growth could take longer.
Cactus pups: Should I remove them?
Taking out cactus pups is one of the simplest ways to propagate cacti. These are the miniature copies of the parent plant at the base; they lack hairy ears and a tail. Numerous cactus species are renowned for producing cactus pups, which share their parent’s traits without the erratic nature of seeds, which might result in plants with various traits.
Cactus offsets, commonly referred to as pups, can be removed to create another whole plant, which is handy in overcrowded situations. The sluggish growth of seed, the surgical dexterity of grafting, and the variable growth of cuttings are all more difficult to propagate cacti than offsets. The young cacti merely need to be separated from the adult because they are miniature versions of the parent species.
Can I cut my cactus’ top off?
The enjoyable part is now. With the exception of damaged or dead stems and leaves, almost all of the material you remove is salvageable.
- If pads are placed on top of soil, they will take root and grow into a new plant of the same species.
- After several days, cut stems and trunks should be allowed to callus before being planted to grow new cacti.
- You should immediately pot up any offsets or pups that you remove from the specimen’s base because they are new plants in their own right.
- Compost is used for dead flower stalks and leaves, although certain cactus species develop leaves on the flower stem that can be treated similarly to other species’ pad material. Within a month, the majority of cactus portions will begin to root.
Once you’ve brought your first cactus back to life, you’ll enjoy creating more of the magnificent plant so you can add to your collection or give them as gifts to loved ones.
Describe the cactus pups.
Offsets of cacti, commonly referred to as pups, are created by the parent plant. Cactus pups should be cut at a 45-degree angle and rooted in well-draining soil as part of the vegetative propagation procedure known as rooting.
How frequently do cacti need to be watered?
The most frequent reason for cacti failure is improper watering, whether it is done too much or too little. Cacti have evolved to store water for extended periods of time and can maintain moisture through droughts because they are endemic to arid regions and dry temperatures. They have a limited capacity, which is why over-watering can result in a variety of issues.
When it comes to regularity, watering your cacti will largely depend on the season but also on the variety. Checking the soil is the easiest technique to determine whether your cactus needs water: It’s time for a drink if the top inch is dry. That entails applying the “soak and dry procedure” on cactus.
What is the soak and dry method?
The soak and dry technique is thoroughly wetting the soil until part of it begins to flow out the drainage hole, then waiting until the mixture is nearly dry before wetting it once more. If done properly, this strategy will help them endure a period of under-watering should you need to travel or leave the house because it takes use of their natural tendency to store water (or if you just get busy and watering falls to the wayside, as happens to all of us now and again).
Watering during the growing season versus the inactive season
Like with many houseplants, the season affects how frequently you need water. It becomes more crucial that you get in the habit of examining the soil to determine whether your cacti are thirsty. A healthy cactus needs watering every one to two weeks during the growing season, according to general wisdom. The frequency changes to once every three to four weeks during the off-season.
Even then, it’s crucial to examine the soil. The same way that not all interior spaces and not all cacti are alike. The only way to be certain that your cactus require watering is to carefully examine the soil to determine how dry it is because there are so many different factors.
What should I do with a too-tall cactus?
Knowing some of the reasons why cactus trimming is necessary, you now need to know when to carry it out. The top five indications that it’s time to prune your plant are covered in this section.
The plant has become too large
There are a few exceptions to the rule that most cacti species grow slowly and seldom reach destructive heights. When the correct conditions are present, members of the family of jungle cacti can grow too quickly.
As a result, if you want your plant to be asymmetrical but it is getting too big or one side is growing significantly quicker than the other, you may want to prune it back.
Normally, if you are pruning a plant to make it smaller, you should think about trimming the plant back by at least a third every year. A plant with regular trimming will eventually become slightly bushier and have more areas for blossoms to grow.
It’s a little simpler to maintain smaller plants because you may put them anyplace in your home. They can fit on your window sills without taking up too much of the small interior area.
Some pests can still get to your plant even if the majority of cacti species have sharp spines that keep them away. Cactus bugs, mealy bugs, spider mites, cactus longhorn beetles, scale insects, and other common pests may attack your cactus.
Some of these insects reproduce quickly, and the results can be disastrous if you don’t move quickly to stop them. While the majority of them target the stems, some may also target the roots.
You must take the necessary steps to stop pest infestations as soon as you see them on your cactus. You may easily eliminate huge bugs by hand if they are an issue. You might have to hire a professional pest exterminator if they are little, like spider mites.
The bad news is that some bugs that affect cactus are so resilient and chemically resistant that not even the most seasoned pest exterminator can eradicate them. Pruning the damaged area is the sole option if you have tried hiring an exterminator but have not seen any effects.
Determine the area of the stem that was bugged, then carefully prune it back. To prevent re-infestation, be sure to prune the entire stem that is afflicted.
You must act quickly to address the frequent cactus problem of rotting if you want to keep your plant. Rotting may begin at the base (roots) and progress to the stem. It may also begin at the top and descend.
You may be dealing with tip rot, often referred to as cactus stem rot, if the tip of your cactus begins to turn brown and squishy. If you don’t move quickly to save the plant, your cactus will eventually die since once it begins to rot from the top, it won’t stop.
A fungus and pest infestation, as well as water infiltrating through an open wound on the plant, are the main causes of stem rot. Your cactus may be prone to stem rot if it has sustained any kind of harm.
The most crucial action you must take to save the remainder of the plant is to prune or cut down all compromised stem parts as soon as you see stem rot symptoms on your plant. If the rot isn’t removed by pruning, it will eventually kill your plant if you don’t.
Remember that rot spreads quickly, so there might not be much time left to preserve the cactus. To prune the stem’s impacted areas, use pruning shears or a sharp knife.
The appearance of dead stalks after blooming season
Another indication that you need to prune your cactus is the presence of dead flower stalks soon after the flowering season. This is especially true of the profusely flowering Christmas cacti.
To prevent losing the priceless blooms, don’t prune before the flowering season. But when the flowering season is done, you might see that the flower stems that are still there look unsightly. To give your cactus a fresh look, take your time and carefully prune them back.
In addition to getting rid of the dead stalks, pruning your cactus after the flowering period will also make it bushier, which will inevitably result in the formation of additional blooms the following year. Make sure to remove all of the diseased branches and dead stalks.
Cactus is getting too tall for its pot
When you notice that your cactus plant is growing too tall for its pot, you should also take pruning into consideration. Every two to three years is the ideal time to repot your cactus, although this is not always the case.
As a result, if you see that your plant is growing too tall for its container, you should think about cutting it to prevent it from falling over. Plants cultivated in light plastic containers typically develop into taller, more slender plants. The plant can grow thicker and healthier if its height is appropriately reduced.