Cacti are some of the most low-maintenance plants out there. As compared to other plants, they don’t need much attention.
Whether you’re looking for easy ways to add more greenery to your house or are just starting as a novice gardener, opting for a cactus is a good option.
Succulents are popular for their easy-to-maintain characteristic. A species that’s quite loveable is a cactus. You might think a plant that survives in the desert’s intense heat desert can handle anything.
However, a cactus needs your tender loving care to survive and thrive. So, if you have a cactus in your living room, it’s time to pay a little attention to it.
Small cacti plants also make great housewarming gifts. And the best part is that they can thrive indoors as well.
However, this doesn’t mean they don’t need any care at all.
You may think about how a cactus survives in the desert without any human intervention and believe that you can just get a cactus and leave it to fend for its own. But that’s not the case.
For most cacti species, deserts are their natural habitat.
Your house most likely doesn’t share the same characteristics as a desert. Therefore, it is important to take some measures while caring for an indoor cactus plant.
Caring for Indoor Cacti Plants
Growing cacti plants indoors requires some effort. Luckily, you don’t have to take extreme measures to learn how to do so.
Following are some easy tips you can follow to ensure the best care for an indoor cactus plant.
Choose The Color Wisely
Cacti plants come in various colors, ranging from blue, green purple, pink, and grey. These aren’t meant for beautification purposes.
Different colored cacti species thrive in different environments. So it is important to look up what plants will do better in your home environment.
For instance, green cacti thrive better in low-light environments. So if you’re planning on storing your cactus in dimly lit rooms, a green one could be a good option.
However, if the room is well-lit, opting for a pink or purple variety would be better.
If you’re shopping at a local nursery, the seller may be able to guide you better.
Use Appropriate Fertilizer
You can easily find appropriate fertilizers meant for cactus in any nursery. Ensuring that you use the right fertilizers encourages the growth of the cactus.
Look for a low-nitrogen but soluble fertilizer. Ideally, you should apply fertilizers every two months, three times.
Fertilizers should be applied when you notice new growth in the plant. If you recently got a potter cactus, do not apply fertilizer until you see some new growth.
Provide Adequate Light
Whether it is a green cactus or a purple one, it still needs a strong light source to stay healthy. This is even more important during the winter.
The great thing is that they don’t necessarily need sunlight to stay warm.
Ideally, you should place your indoor plants next to a window or any spot in the house which gets direct sunlight.
However, if you don’t get any sunlight in the house, you can invest in a UV lamp or grow light to keep near the plant.
A usual house lamp also works well in keeping the cactus adequately warm in a pinch but may not work as well as lights specially designed for this purpose.
Water Cactus Occasionally
You’ve probably heard that too much water can kill cacti. And considering they’re a desert plant, you may think that the cacti don’t need any water at all.
However, even the desert gets occasional rain which helps the cacti survive. Since your indoor plants won’t get any natural rain, you will have to provide adequate water to the cactus.
A cactus plant needs regular watering during fall and spring. During summer, it may need less water. And in winter, you may need to withhold the water completely.
Depending on how cold it gets, the water can freeze in the roots and kill the plants. When a cactus is dehydrating, it starts going pale.
So keep an eye on any changes, and adjust how regularly you water it accordingly.
Look Out for Pests
Like any other plant, pests can be a major concern for cactus as well. The most common problems indoor cacti encounter are bacterial and fungal diseases caused by overwatering.
So making sure to provide only as much water as required can help avoid these issues.
However, occasionally, your indoor cactus may be attacked by pests such as mealybugs or spider mites.
If you notice any of these on your cactus, you can get rid of them by washing them off. Cover the soil of the plant to make it waterproof before doing so.
Ensuring that your plant gets enough sunlight, water, and drainage can help keep most pests at bay.
Place Your Potted Plants in the Sunlight Sometimes
If your indoor plant is in a pot – which it most likely is – keeping them out in the sunlight can encourage better growth and sustenance. Getting natural light can also help avoid issues such as edema.
During the summers, try to keep your potted plant out for a few days.
Make sure to pick a sheltered spot. Bring them in if it is the rainy season, and keep an eye on snails who may end up destroying the stems if they get to the plant.
Proper Air Circulation
Cacti are desert plants. Naturally, they hate stiff breezes; it’s in their genes. This is why they require adequate air circulation.
Depending on where you plan to place them in the house, it may or may not be easy to provide adequate air circulation. However, it isn’t impossible.
Try to keep your vents open during the day and incorporate the use of ceiling fans to encourage better air circulation around the plant.
Ultimately, a cactus plant is surviving under your care. Therefore, it is your job to keep a close eye on the plant to ensure that it is getting everything it needs to stay healthy.
In addition to that, closely observing their growth helps you understand what works and what doesn’t work for your plant.
This can be really helpful in the long run – especially if you plan on getting more cacti plants for your house.
For instance, if your leaves are growing towards sunlight, it means that they are not getting enough of it.
You may need to change their location and place them somewhere that gets more sunlight or invest in proper grow lights.
If you notice that the cactus is fading, it is getting too much light and needs to be placed somewhere with less light.
If you’re excited about getting your first cactus, the above tips may have further increased your excitement.
As you can see, caring for an indoor cactus plant doesn’t require much effort. As long as you know what you are doing, you will be able to easily manage the plant in the long run.
You see, when it comes to a cactus plant, being knowledgeable about what you’re doing is more important than anything.
So educate yourself about the needs of a cactus plant, and you’ll be set.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Does Cactus help in hair growth?
Yes. Cacti are filled with minerals and vitamins such as iron, calcium, vitamin A, and magnesium. It also helps your body absorb these nutrients. You also need to make sure to drink plenty of water since dehydration will affect the absorption process.
Where should I put a cactus in my house?
The best place to put a cactus is a place with good air circulation and light. You can put a cactus in any room in your house, but make sure that it has enough space to grow, and that the soil is humid. A cactus can grow outdoors in a hot and sunny area perfectly.
What is the best way to eat cactus? (Raw or Cooked)
Raw cactus is best eaten with a touch of bitter lemon or lime juice, salt, and pepper. However, if you cook the cactus, you must boil it in water for at least 10 minutes before adding any seasoning.