Where To Buy Starfish Cactus

You can allow the flowers to wither and enable seeds to develop if you can handle the fragrance. To grow more of these fascinating plants, gather the seeds and sow them in a warm place. The process of propagating using cuttings is very simpler.

A 3- to 4-inch (7.5 to 10 cm) portion of the stem should be removed, and the cut end should callus. Insert the cut end into some mildly damp peat. The potted cutting should be kept in low light with just enough moisture in the soil to prevent rot.

The cutting will eventually grow into a plant. Continue with the prescribed starfish flower plant care after repotting the baby plant in ordinary soil. You can share this alluring plant with friends and family because this way of cultivating starfish blooms is less stinky.

Where did the starfish cactus originate?

The milkweed plant and the Stapelia flower, often known as a carrion flower or starfish plant, are both members of the Asclepiadaceae family.

Stapelia is a genus of unique, exotic succulent plants that naturally thrives in South Africa’s subtropical climates.

This group of succulent plants consists of roughly 90 different individuals. The huge, star-shaped flowers on this plant are its most noticeable characteristic.

With their odd, donut-like cores and vivid, splashy markings, these flowers have a truly unique appearance.

A starfish cactus stinks, why?

The starfish cactus owned by Durango resident MaryLou Brewer has flowered with the stench of rotting meat. (With David Johnson’s permission)

Initially, Durango MaryLou Brewer claimed to have rearranged her furniture in an effort to look for the deceased mouse’s remains because she believed the foul odor coming from her home was caused by a rodent that had been killed by her cat. It turned out to be her starfish cactus in full bloom. The tapelia grandiflora cactus is frequently referred to as a “carrion flower.”

What size can a starfish cactus grow to?

“Stapelia grandiflora is a blooming plant in the Stapelia genus of the Apocynaceae family,” says Wikipedia about the starfish cactus flower. It is a South African native that is also referred to as the starfish cactus, huge toad plant, starfish bloom, and carrion plant. Hardiness zones 10–11, Stapelia grandiflora produces giant carrion blossoms and 14-inch yellow flowers with crimson bands (Stapelia grandiflora). Their spreading green arms take on a hint of red when the sun is high in the sky. Thick white spines that stick out from the skin cover the arms. Along the length of the plant, four-angled stems that are an inch thick and vertically aligned run.


An indigenous floral plant of South Africa is the starfish cactus. Stapelia grandiflora has an interesting past that dates back more than 3,000 years in Mexico and Central America, where it was utilized as a food source and for medical uses. While the Aztecs utilized it as a staple of their food, the Mayans used it for ceremonial purposes and even wore them on their heads during rituals.

Plant Characteristics.

While the Starfish Cactus bloom, which can reach a height of 12 inches and have arms that are six to eight inches broad, resembles a star when it is open. The blossoms of the starfish cactus can be up to 14 inches broad depending on the type. Although some of its five-pointed flowers are reddish-purple, others are gray or yellowish, and all of them are flesh-colored. The larger flowering species have flowers close to the base of the plant, whilst the smaller flowering species may have blooms scattered throughout the cactus. When a bloom perishes, another one replaces it, yet the cycle keeps repeating itself. The petals have a coarse texture and pores similar to those found on skin.

The plant can also thrive in a variety of soil types, including sandy, clay, or rocky ones. The starfish cactus shares many characteristics with the common cactus, but also distinguishes itself from them with a few unique traits. For instance, it grows several stems or branches from the core. Its leaves also have a more rounded form than those of other cacti and are not as pointed.

Mature Size and Height.

Up to 14 inches tall, star cacti have arms that are six to eight inches wide. The plant may thrive in a variety of environments, including droughts, partial shade, and full sun.

Trimming and Pruning.

To keep Stapelia grandiflora healthy and attractive, plant must be pruned annually. Unfortunately, because they don’t know how to do it properly, many individuals are terrified by the thought of trimming or pruning plants in their homes. But you can trim your plant like an expert if you adhere to general punning and trimming guidelines!

Trimming and pruning are crucial parts of keeping a plant healthy. Trimming or pruning is done to keep the starfish cactus’ growth and shape consistent and to get rid of any dead or diseased branches.

Searching for dead or dying branches on the plant is the first stage in this procedure. Cut them off at the base using a sharp object to get rid of them. Use a pair of sizable, sharp scissors in place of a sharp blade if you don’t have any. Remove any stems that have been harmed by insects, illness, frost, or wind as the next step.

How to Propagate Starfish Cactus

An easy-to-grow plant that prefers warmer areas is the starfish cactus. It grows slowly and produces thin, greenish stems with pointed, narrow ribs. It may grow in a wide range of soil types, including sandy, clay, and rocky ones. Additionally, it can withstand dryness and thrive in desert environments. The plant can be cultivated in a greenhouse, in full sun, or in some shade. Additionally, a garden or container can be used to grow it. Make sure the soil is well-drained if you are growing the plant in a container. Plant your seeds in peat moss and vermiculite or any other potting soil combination. Place the potting soil in a warm setting, such a sunny window, to a depth of about an inch. The soil should be kept moist but not saturated to prevent the seeds from rotting. You’ll need a container that is at least 12 inches deep because starfish cacti can go up to 14 inches tall. The plant should be able to expand and grow to its full height in the container.

How do you grow a Stapelia grandiflora?

Choose a pot that is at least 10 inches wide and 14 inches deep if you want to grow the starfish cactus in it. The pot should have drainage holes with a maximum diameter of one inch. The depth of the soil should be between 8 and 10 inches, and it should be loose and sandy. For the first three weeks following planting, place the pot in a sunny location.

Four Simple Steps in growing a Starfish Cactus

There are four straightforward procedures you must take if you want to create a starfish cactus. Purchase a starfish cactus from a nearby nursery or garden center as the first step. Additionally, you may get one online by typing in “starfish cactus.” After receiving the plant, the next step is to plant the cactus in a pot with well-drained soil. The plant needs to be next to a window that gets lots of light if you intend to keep it indoors; otherwise, it will start to stretch and grow into an elongated shape. The third step is to give the plant moderate, but regular, watering. If it’s planted indoors, once every week should be adequate, and twice per week if it’s planted outside. Lastly, fertilize the plant every few months.

Flowering and Foliage.

If you’ve ever tried one, you’ll agree with me when I say that Stapelia grandiflora’s blossoms have an absolutely revolting aroma and can grow to be up to 14 inches tall. It’s one of the few indoor plants that really stands out thanks to its very enormous, vividly colored, and texture-rich blooms.

If you look closely enough, flowers can in fact reach heights greater than the plant as a whole. This indoor plant is popular among gardeners because to its brightly colored flowers, which also have a strong scent and appear at the base of its stalks.

Soil and Transplanting.

Every garden needs soil, it’s a given. Unfortunately, maintaining it is the most difficult. Rich in nutrients, with appropriate drainage and moisture retention, the soil is essential. The combination should also contain coconut coir. Coir is utilized to keep the soil from getting excessively acidic. Its pH ranges from 5.5 to 6.8, which is nearly neutral compared to peat moss, which can occasionally be rather acidic. One of the main advantages of utilizing coir mulch is that it keeps the soil moist. When your starfish cactus bloom achieves full maturity, it will cover the entire growing container.

It’s crucial to understand when it’s time to transfer your plant. Your Stapelia Flower may need to be transplanted when it outgrows its container. Whenever the soil is dry but not wet, water your newly transplanted plant. The starfish cactus should be taken out of its pot by loosening the soil around its roots and pulling it out. This is the finest method for transplanting it. The optimal season for this exercise is spring. Make use of a container with a very large diameter to allow your plants to grow in any direction. Before adding potting soil, add a layer of stones to the bottom of the growing medium to hasten drainage.

Sunlight and Temperature.

The starfish cactus is one of the most well-known types because it can survive in both cool and hot areas, needing lots of sunlight and warmth. Remember that the starfish cactus can flourish in both hot and cold areas. This makes it perfect for residents of the southwest of the United States, where the temperature varies greatly, such as Arizona. But the optimal range is between 26 and 35 degrees Celsius, or 80 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Although Stapelia grandiflora thrives in warmer climates, it can live in any environment with a warm summer. It must be kept in a sunny location, although not necessarily in the sun. However, you must make sure the plant receives enough light if you are growing it in a greenhouse.

Common Pests and Diseases.

Common pests and maladies including mealybugs, mites, aphids, whiteflies, and powdery mildew can harm starfish cacti. These insects and illnesses have the potential to harm the plant and perhaps cause it to lose its branches and stems. Thus, it is essential to frequently examine the plant for these pests and diseases, and you should get rid of any insects or plants that have a disease. These pests can eat on the cactus’ leaves or sucking off its sap, among other methods of attack. Rot and root rot brought on by overwatering are the two diseases that harm this cactus most frequently. Use an insecticide, fungicide, or other natural pest management strategies to stop the spread of these pests and illnesses. Without endangering the plants, these pesticides will eradicate insects, mites, and other pests. But it’s important to apply these pesticides sparingly.

How do you take care of a starfish cactus?

The starfish cactus is an excellent option if you’re searching for a houseplant that requires little maintenance and can thrive in dim lighting. Anyone who wishes to develop a plant without investing a lot of time in its maintenance should choose the star cactus. It doesn’t need a lot of water or fertilizer and may flourish in low light situations. The Starfish Cactus does not require upkeep, in contrast to other cactus. It can grow in a variety of environments and in both full sun and some shade. Sand, clay, and rocky soils are all suitable for growing the plant. The spring is the ideal time to plant the starfish cactus, and the fall is the time to prune and nourish it. Trim the plant’s leaves and aging branches to promote fresh growth. To keep the plant alive, the starfish cactus has to be constantly watered and clipped. Watering should take place every two weeks for plants growing in sandy soil and every four weeks for those in clay soil because clay will hold onto moisture longer.

Starfish Cactus varieties.

the Pachycereus pringlei

One of the most well-known varieties of starfish cacti is the Pachycereus pectinatus, which features purple spines in addition to having a unique shape with many branches. The length of its branches ranges from 6 to 12 inches. It can be any shade of brown or grayish-green, depending on the soil where it grows.

Peruvian Cereus:

Schotti’s schottii:

The type with the largest prevalence is Pachycereus schottii, which has broad, white-yellow spines.

How often does a starfish cactus bloom?

Although the starfish cactus blooms in a variety of ways, it does not typically blossom, at least not in all places and climates. This cactus blooms a little more frequently in the wild than it does in cultivation.

Is Starfish Cactus Toxic?

Although the starfish cactus is not poisonous to both humans and animals, it can sting when touched. This cactus has huge, sharp spines that can hurt skin when they come into touch with it.

When does the starfish flower bloom?

A young plant will typically bloom in two years with just one or two blooms. When the plant is fully matured in North America, it will bloom from July through September.


Beautiful star cacti can be found. It is not only lovely to look at, but also incredibly simple to maintain. It may be grown in either full sun or partial shade and thrives in a variety of environments. The star cactus can be nourished and pruned in the fall, but it is ideal to plant it in the spring.

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