Why Is My Fairy Castle Cactus Turning Brown

Root rot is another potential explanation for your fairy castle cactus’ browning leaves.

Overwatering is usually the cause of this, which is one of the most frequent issues people have with cactus.

Root rot has likely already started to develop if the bottom of the cactus is turning brown and is spongy.

You must stop watering it, repot the plant in well-drained soil, and be sure to remove any rotting areas of the plant.

Reduce your cactus’s watering frequency to help prevent root rot.

It’s a good idea to water a cactus only when the earth around it feels entirely dry to the touch.

The summer, when your fairy castle cactus is actively developing, will probably require more watering than the winter, when it falls dormant, but abiding by the guideline of only watering it when the soil is dry should prevent root rot from becoming an issue.

Damage From Sunburn

Your fairy castle cactus may have sunburn if the tops of the plant are turning yellow, white, or brownish.

Bright sunshine is loved by fairy castle cactus, but they only require it for around six hours each day.

Try to situate your cactus next to a window that receives direct sunlight for roughly that length of time each day if you’re growing it indoors.

If you’re growing it outdoors, position it carefully so it won’t be in the direct light all day. You might also want to consider purchasing a shade to reduce the plant’s exposure to the sun’s rays.

Sudden Environmental Changes

When you shock your cactus by drastically altering its habitat, sunburn can also be an issue.

Your cactus may get sunburned if you abruptly place it into 6 hours of intense daily light when it was previously used to receiving a lot of shade because it won’t have had time to adjust to its new environment.

If you suspect that your fairy castle cactus has been deprived of sunshine, place it in some shade at first, then gradually increase the amount of sunlight it receives until it is fully acclimated to the increased rays and higher temperatures.

Start exposing your cactus to the dimmer morning sun and gradually move up to the stronger afternoon light.

If it receives more sunlight throughout the summer, it can also require a bit additional water.

Bug Problems

Mealy bugs, scales, and spider mites really enjoy cactus, so if they get onto your plant, it could result in a variety of issues, from brown, gooey areas to plant death.

If your fairy castle cactus starts to look sickly and brown, check it closely to make sure there aren’t any insects on it.

If it happens, you should use some tweezers to remove them right away. After that, you should watch the plant to see if its condition changes or if any other bugs appear.

You may also take the cactus outside and use a hosepipe to spray it down until the entire surface is free of insects.

But if you do this, just watch out that the water pressure doesn’t get too high and hurt the cactus.

How is Browning cactus fixed?

Look to check if the brown spot and the vicinity are mushy and soft. If so, your cactus has probably started to rot from the inside out and is now displaying symptoms on the outside.

After noticing soft brown areas, the best technique to fix your cactus is to cut off healthy stems (without any signs of rot) and start a new plant.

Before cutting, disinfect a razor blade or a pair of extremely sharp sheers. Cut the cactus above the area of rot, allow it to dry, callus over, and then plant it again.

Use fresh soil, and thoroughly clean and dry the pot if you’re using the same one. Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do to save your cactus as is once it has begun to decay.

In other words, the only method to revive a cactus that has developed rot is to cut off the healthy stems—those portions of the plant that are still green—and repot them in fresh soil.

How do you tell when the Fairy Castle cactus needs to be watered?

While including 2-3 drainage holes at the bottom of the pot, make sure that any extra water reaches the soil’s surface.

Avoid overwatering the plant as this might reduce yield and invite fungus diseases.


The Fairy Castle Cactus can withstand temperatures of 30 to 90 F. (-1.1-32C). However, the optimal temperature range is 64-79F. (18-26C)

They grow best in summer or warm climates since they flourish best in direct sunshine.

You should water it a bit less and keep it indoors throughout the winter. As too much exposure to the cold can cause the plant to die.

However, some cacti have demonstrated the ability to endure temperatures between 30 F and 90 F. (-1.1 C32C).


Rarely do flowers appear, and even then, only if your species has the ability to produce blossoms.

If so, the flowers may have a tube that is 5.5-8 (14–20 m) in diameter (8-15 cm).

The color spectrum of flowers includes yellow, reddish-orange, creamy white, and greenish-white.

Some flowers can bloom throughout the day, however most flowers bloom at odd hours between midnight and dawn.

When a cactus becomes brown, what does that mean?

Cacti can change color from yellow to brown. This process, known as corking, is most frequently caused by aging. When a cactus reaches maturity, corking occurs spontaneously.

It starts at the plant’s base where the soil is in contact and might gently progress upward or remain stationary. The plant looks woody after corking. The plant is solid to the touch and generally healthy.

You have a distinct problem if the plant becomes brown and feels mushy or soft to the touch. This typically indicates either rotting, sickness, or both. Rot can develop at the roots of a cactus that has been exposed to constant moisture and progress up the plant.

A cactus can also turn brown from diseases like fungus or from pest infestation. The browning frequently affects various plant components, and when touched, it will feel soft and mushy rather than hard.

How much sun is required for a fairy castle cactus?

The fairy castle cactus is a slow-growing, low-maintenance plant that is suitable for novice gardeners. To care for a fairy castle cactus indoors or outdoors, follow these guidelines:

  • 1. Ensure that the fairy castle cactus gets lots of light. House plants preserved as fairy castle cacti should be cultivated in a location with lots of sunlight. The colors will fade and the columns will become crooked if these plants don’t get enough light. Although it prefers full light, this plant can also tolerate some shade.
  • 2. Give the fairy castle cactus only a little water. Avoid overwatering your fairy castle cactus by letting the dirt in its pot get completely dry in between waterings. Your cactus will probably perish as a result of root rot or the attraction of mealybugs caused by standing water or moist soil.
  • 3. Control the environment’s temperature for the plant. The fairy castle cactus thrives in hot conditions as long as it receives enough water. It should, however, be moved indoors if the outside temperature falls below 32 degrees Fahrenheit because it is extremely susceptible to frost. Consider your cactus’ indoor location carefully as well because air conditioning or chilly drafts might be harmful.
  • 4. Sow the fairy castle cactus in soil that drains well. The fairy castle cactus needs soil that drains well, just like many other cacti species. Using soil that has significant amounts of gravel, bark, sand, or perlite will aid in preventing soil saturation.
  • 5. Use a pot with drainage holes that is not glazed. Extra moisture can be absorbed by a terra cotta pot.
  • To promote growth, add fertilizers and plant food. Plant food can be given to the soil or water to promote development during the warmer months, but it shouldn’t be used in the winter when the cactus is dormant. Cactus fertilizer should be applied in the spring as growth begins again.

How can you determine if a cactus has been overwatered or not?

The cactus won’t typically seem radically different from day to day because underwatering typically happens gradually over time.

There are a few indicators, nevertheless, that will let you know if your cactus is submerged.

Signs of an Underwatered Cactus

Knowing the warning signals of an underwatered cactus is crucial for prompt response. Your cactus will have a better chance of recovering if you do this.

The most typical warning indicators of a submerged cactus include:

The Cactus Is Light Green or Yellowish

Since this normally happens gradually over time, the color change might not be apparent right away.

If your cactus begin to become light green or yellowish, keep an eye out for more symptoms of an underwatered plant.

The Spines Are Falling off Easily

A well-watered cactus has roots that go far into the ground and take in water there.

Their root systems do not, however, work correctly while they are underwater because the dearth of nutrients in the soil leads them to wither away.

As a result, the spines become fragile and easily detach.

another typical indicator of a submerged cactus

The Cactus Is Wilting

Due to nutrient deficiency, their spines cannot support the plant adequately, which causes them to lose their shape.

As a result, plants that were formerly upright and in good shape gradually start to sag or droop.

Decay at the Base of the Plant

Roots will cease developing and begin to deteriorate over time if they are unable to absorb enough nutrients from the soil as a result of a lack of water, which will eventually result in decay at the base of the plant.

It’s possible that you won’t immediately notice whether or not your cacti are underwater because this normally happens gradually.

The New Growth on Your Cacti Is Weak and off Center With Older Growth

Lack of nutrients will have an impact on how a cactus develops new limbs.

In this instance, you’ll see that the younger growth is somewhat deformed and less symmetrical than the older ones-another indication that the cactus has been submerged.

Did I water my cactus too much?

Here are a few frequent problems that many plant owners have when trying to determine the best approach to take care of succulents and cacti.

Cacti and succulents adore light. No succulent or cactus we’ve ever seen wants to sit on your gloomy office desk, even if some species (for succulents, try haworthia or gasteria; for cacti, try epiphytes like rhipsalis and hatiora) can endure lower light. To thrive, these guys need to be close to a window, ideally one that faces south so they can make the most of the sunlight. The first step in determining whether you are prepared to care for succulents and cacti is to choose a light spot in your home.

When they don’t receive enough light, succulents exhibit peculiar behavior. If your succulents require more light, you’ll frequently notice yellowing in them. Bright pink, purple, or yellow colors frequently return to simply plain green, while deep green will eventually fade to pale green.

The development habits of succulents are similarly impacted by inadequate light. Succulents frequently become long and spindly in an effort to reach for the light. Sempervivum and echeveria species, which typically grow in rosettes, may suddenly start growing tall and reaching for additional light.

Likewise with cacti. As the cactus strives for light, what was formerly dark, robust flesh may turn pale. Additionally, just like “reaching succulents,” cacti that don’t get enough light will exhibit odd growth patterns. Etiolation is the process of new growth being significantly smaller than the rest of the plant; occasionally, long, tendril-like branches or unusually skinny new growth on the top of the cactus will emerge.

Succulents and cacti can bounce back from too little light, but the etiolated growth habit is irreversible. If the strange growth pattern bothers you, consider trimming it off. Many succulents and cacti may flourish after pruning. The new growth that appears should be “normal and non-etiolated” as long as you relocate your plant to a position where it will receive enough light.

Finally, because the soil will remain wet for too long in the absence of proper light, root rot might also result. See if your plant might be experiencing root rot as a result of inadequate light by seeing the photographs of it below.

Most cacti and succulents can withstand direct sunlight. However, if your plant isn’t used to it, using too much can be hazardous. For instance, moving a succulent or cactus onto the porch for the summer (very recommended!) and suddenly exposing it to 3 or 4 hours of direct sunlight per day will cause it to burn.

Burn typically manifests itself on your cactus and succulents as browned or calloused flesh. Your best approach for recognizing burn is to look for discoloration, especially on the side of the plant facing the window. A coarser texture will develop on the burned leaves or meat compared to the remainder of the plant.

Burnt leaves cannot be repaired; you can either remove them by pruning or by changing the surroundings so that your plant receives more suitable light.

Succulents and cacti should be moved outdoors during the summer, but do it gradually to give them time to become used to the brighter environment. Start them off in a shaded outdoor space (which will still be brighter than your living room, most likely), and gradually increase their exposure to light over the course of a week or two.

not enough It is undoubtedly safer to provide too little water than too much in the context of caring for succulents and cacti. Despite this, succulents and cacti do require water, particularly in the spring and summer when they are actively growing.

The problematic issue is that having too much or too little water can sometimes appear alike. However, if you err on the side of caution, you might reasonably assume that you are under-watering if your plant exhibits the following behaviors.

When succulents receive insufficient water, they frequently pucker. Because they store water in their foliage, succulents and cacti are lush and meaty. The plant relies on these water reserves to live during dry spells. As the plant physically consumes its water stores, the flesh will start to shrivel or pucker. As observed in these jade species, this typically begins on the lower leaves and moves its way up the plant:

Here’s another illustration of a succulent that is thirsty (a few of which often happen to be etiolated from low light). Observe how they seem a little bit shriveled:

Additionally, a dry cactus may pucker or shrivel in addition to discoloring (usually getting brown and dry, or calloused).

Give your cactus and succulents a nice, thorough watering if they exhibit these symptoms. But always choose cactus or succulent soil that drains properly, as your plants won’t want to stay in wet soil for very long. The leaves should quickly re-puff up!

too much From only a picture, it might be difficult to tell whether a cactus has received too much or too little water. Without knowing how much water it received, for instance, it would be difficult to determine whether this opuntia cactus received too much or not because the symptoms are frequently similar:

However, a succulent or cactus that has received too much water will feel mushy rather than simply puckered. These plants can store a lot of water, but once that storage capacity is exhausted, the plant will literally come apart as the cell walls and roots decay. This results in them becoming mushy, and it’s a crucial distinction that may help you distinguish between over- and under-watering while also looking at your own watering practices and the surrounding environment.

Overwatering is characterized by a variety of symptoms, including browning or blackening of the plant’s leaves or stems, browning or blackening at the plant’s base, mushy or leaky plants, and plants that are practically decomposing in front of your eyes.

Gently remove your succulent or cactus from its pot and look at the roots if you suspect decay. When a plant has brown or black roots, it

To cool Because they are native to desert settings, the majority of succulents and cacti are well-suited to freezing nighttime temperatures (jungle cacti, for example). Most succulents and cacti prefer chilly nights, especially in the winter. In fact, several species, such jade, christmas cactus, and epiphylum, bloom more readily in colder climates.

Low temperatures, however, can be an issue indoors because they frequently coincide with high humidity levels. When you water your cacti and succulents in the cool winter months, the soil will remain moist for a lot longer than it would in the hot summer months. You guessed it: root rot results from cool, damp soil.

Pay close attention to your succulent and cactus watering schedule if your house gets quite cold in the winter. You might only need to water your plants once a month or even less, depending on their type, size, drainage capabilities, and pot. Additionally, we advise erring on the side of caution when it comes to winter watering and giving the plant a moderate amount as opposed to completely soaking the soil.

The procedures outlined above for identifying over-watering are the best approach to determine if too-cold temperatures are having an impact on your succulents and cacti.

too warm Cacti and succulents are particularly skilled at tolerating high temperatures since they can survive cold temperatures for the same reason! After all, the desert is a region of extremes.

However, excessive heat in an indoor growth setting frequently causes watering problems. If your plants are outdoors in the heat, they will quickly dry out. Depending on the heat and exposure, you might need to water your succulents and cacti twice a month or even every week.

When put in a window, excessive temperatures can also be a problem for cacti and succulents. Plants can be burned by the sun’s heat coming through glass since it tends to be more intense. Utilizing the detection procedures outlined under “too much light,” check for burn.

What cacti-related issues have you had? How are succulents cared for? There is so much to learn, and we’d love to learn from you. Please share with us in the comments.

Have inquiries? For a chance to have your issue addressed in the upcoming episode of Pistils Rx, feel free to post it in the comments section or send us an email with images.