A cactus plant is slowly becoming a willful addition in the houses of many people.
A cactus is a type of succulent and one of the most recognizable plants in the world because you can recognize its structure and shape.
It’s a unique plant that you can add to your home to give it a sense of aestheticism. People are now cultivating cactus plants as the market demand grows.
Plants are slowly becoming a way for people to bring more nature into their homes. Hence, the demand for all potted plants like cactus and succulents is growing.
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If you’re someone who likes having a lot of plants in your home, you may be moved to buy a fair amount of cactus and succulents.
However, you’ll spend a fair bit of money on buying cactus plants and succulents if you’re trying to fill your entire home with them.
Instead, it may be useful for you to learn how to grow cactus from cutting so that you may have as many cactus plants littered in your home as you want.
Thus, you can propagate your cactus plant using cuttings.
What Is a Cactus Plant?
The cactus plant is a succulent plant with a thick fleshy stem and pads that typically have spines on them instead of leaves.
It’s one of the many adaptations that the cactus plant has to survive in the sun.
Cactus plants can also have vibrantly charming flowers which are unique and beautiful, so they add to the overall aesthetic of your home.
However, you can’t have an aesthetic presence if the cactus has not grown properly.
This fact means that you need to allow the cactus plant a lot of time to grow in the best way possible.
You may be able to do this if you grow your cactus plant from stem cuttings.
When Should You Propagate a Cactus?
You can try to propagate a cactus all that you want. However, if you try to propagate it in the incorrect season, you will get sour results.
Instead, you can prepare the cuttings and grow them in a season with greater chances of it growing.
For example, you want to grow it in late spring or early summer as this is the ideal weather for cactus growth. Cacti grow in hot and arid climates.
Thus, early summer provides the perfect time to create grafts of the cactus to grow.
You want to make sure that you don’t propagate a cactus plant during any extreme conditions. If the early summer comes with a heatwave, then you must not plant your cactus during this time.
The stress of rooting the plant, along with the stress of the extra heat from the heatwave, would make it all the more difficult to flourish once you root it.
The heatwave doesn’t support growth in a way that the plant prefers.
Additionally, you should also not propagate a plant in dormant conditions, i.e., during winter.
Since a cactus is already conditioned for the hot climate, it will not grow in colder conditions. Thus, if it’s winter and snow is falling, then you don’t want to propagate the cactus during this time.
How Can Your Propagate Cactus from Cuttings
You can propagate most cactus plants from cuttings with relative ease. If certain cuttings have segments, then the process is even easier for you.
Thus, cactus plants like blue candies, prickly pear, and Christmas cactus plants.
To help you with the process of propagation, we’ve combined a list of steps that will help you know how you can grow a cactus from cuttings.
Step 1: Take a Cutting
Taking a cutting is the easiest way you can grow a cactus from the plant. Taking a cutting involves removing a segment from the plant so it can from its root system.
Once the plant establishes the root system, it can then grow to form an entire cactus. To take a cutting, you’ll want to take a sharp knife and alcohol to sterilize the knife.
Since most Cactus plants have spines, it would be smart for you to wear protective gloves and tongs to handle cactus pads.
The best cactus to propagate are ones that grow in clusters. If a cactus has a single round orb, it may not be the perfect candidate for propagation then.
You may want to select a segment that looks healthy and full. Once you’ve made that selection, you can then cut out the pad or segment that you wish to propagate.
Step 2: Waiting
After taking the cutting from stems, you’ll have to wait around for a little while.
Place the stem cuttings in a location with indirect light until a callus develops. The callous prevents the stem cutting from rot.
Step 3: Prepare the Planter or Pot
Once the cutting is dry, you’re going to need to plant it. For this, you’re going to take containers that have holes for drainage.
It’s necessary to prevent rot in Cactus plants so that the containers have proper drainage. You should also know that you can propagate cactus plants in water as you can with the most succulents.
However, it requires more effort than people prefer, which is why you might as well stick to soil.
Once you pick containers, you must place soil or potting mixture into the container to place the stem cuttings into the container.
The soil must be gritty and coarse so it can allow for drainage. You can create your soil by mixing materials like perlite, soil, and oak bark, or you can use a premade soil mix from your local plant shop.
As far as planters and pots go, you can also use ones made of plastic or terracotta as long as they offer you proper drainage.
Terracotta is better for drainage. However, these are also heavier and may cost you more than plastic planters.
Step 4: Taking Care of Growth
Once your stem cuttings are ready, you’re going to dip them in root powder to provide them with a few extra hormones.
You want to place the cutting into the soil so that it is stable but is not too far away from the surface. Slightly water the cutting, and place it in an area that receives indirect sunlight to help growth.
After two to three weeks, you’re going to tug the stem cutting to see how it fares.
If there’s resistance then, your stem cuttings have roots, and your planting is successful. Once there is growth, you want to stick to a watering schedule and place the plant in direct sunlight.
How Can You Propagate the Cactus Plant from Pad?
You can also propagate cactus from a cactus pad. We will go along with the following steps so that you may grow your cactus from a pad.
Take a cactus pad at least six months old, then cut it off from the main plant. Cactus pads generally have a lot of spines, which is why you want to wear protective gloves while handling the cactus pads.
This step is extremely easy and shouldn’t take you a lot of time.
Then as with the cuttings, you’re going to let the pad get calloused. Once you do that, you’re going to lay that pad on the soil and apply a whole lot of water to it.
After soaking the soil with water, you’ll keep checking in on the soil to ensure there’s a certain degree of moisture there consistently.
The moisture will cause the pad to grow roots more quickly, which means it can start growing all the same.
To make the pad grow, even more, you can place the pad in rooting hormone.
Once the pad has a root system, you want to pull back on the number of times you’re watering your cactus plant.
Just like that, there will be rooting, and then a cactus plant will develop from the pad.
Benefits of Growing Cactus From Cutting
We’ve talked about the many ways that you can grow cactus from cuttings.
There are many steps involved, but many still prefer this practice. We have also listed the benefits below:
It is cost-efficient
You don’t have to buy a cactus from your local plant shop every time you want one. Instead, you can grow one on your own.
It is environmentally-friendly
All the extra demand for cactus plants means that the cactus you’re getting at your local shops, they, in turn, buy from farms.
This process likely takes a lot of energy and is not great for the environment as it maximizes the carbon footprint. Growing plants on your own don’t have any of these harmful effects.
You can grow as many cactus plants as you want
You may want to grow cactus plants so that you can gift them to your friends and family.
Knowing how to grow a cactus plant means you can find ways to present them to others.
The process of growing cactus plants from cuttings is long and arduous.
However, it involves balancing sunlight, water, and the correct soil, which is the case in most plants.
The most significant thing one must care for in cactus plants is that you can’t overwater them as the roots may decay and rot.
Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)
Where do Cactus seeds come from?
Cactus seeds come from the pups of the cactus. They are small, fleshy, rounded like a pea, and usually have white hair. They tend to be green or brown but can be found in many different colors.
Why do cactus flowers only last a day?
Cactus flowers only last a day because they are pollinated by day and rot by night, but if they are pollinated by night and rot by day, they would last a week. The flowers are only open for one day, and the wasps live for 24 hours.
Do succulents bloom all year?
Succulents do not bloom during the winter season but they are known to be perennial plants and they do grow flowers but in a very different way. Succulents take a long time to bloom, so if you want to get a bloom sooner, you can try propagating a succulent cutting.