How To Grow Healthy Cactus Indoors (Seed & Cutting)

Though cacti thrive in hostile environments similar to deserts, with the precise care ways, you possibly can have wholesome vegetation in nearly every room at your own home.

Are you seeking to spruce up your indoor house? Growing cacti at your own home should be amongst your prime concerns, and right here’s why:

  • Cacti have among the most lovely blooms and are available in several sizes and shapes, providing you with plenty of choices.
  • In contrast to most indoor plants, these plants want minimal care.

When growing cacti, the first thing you’ve to keep in mind is that there are two indoor cactus types. Every cacti selection wants its unique set of care strategies to make it thrive. The two varieties are:

  • Desert cactus
  • Forest cactus

Desert cacti plants are characterized by spines and may survive harsh desert circumstances. Examples right here embrace the saguaro and Opuntia.

Forest cactus plants are often known as jungle or tropical cactus. In contrast to their desert counterparts, these cacti don’t have spines and are usually not resilient sufficient to resist hostile desert environments.

how to grow healthy cactus indoors

How To Grow Healthy Cactus Indoors 

When growing both desert or forest cactus, you’ll both have to decide on between the following choices:

  • Growing your cactus from a seed
  • Buying a seedling out of your native cactus retailer
  • Propagating your cactus from a pup
  • Root division

The Catus Seed Technique At Your Home

You may also purchase your cactus seeds from a retailer or harvest them from present cactus fruit. Whereas buying cactus seed from an existing plant is cheaper, these may require little extra work than store-bought ones.

Retailer-bought seeds are already pre-packaged. If you wish to purchase your seeds from a plant, search for brightly colored offshoots on fruits that usually bear flowers.

Take away your pods from the fruit when they’re, nonetheless just a little damp to the touch. Subsequent, slice off the highest and sides of your pods rigorously using a knife to reveal the seeds.

Subsequently, scrape off the seed from the pods utilizing the blunt facet of the knife. Lastly, plant the seed in a shallow container, and be sure that you plant them on prime, fairly than burying them.

Ensure that your soil is excessive drainage and doesn’t permit the water to face for lengthy. Use plastic wrap to cowl the highest of your container and place your container on a window. If the sunset is too hot, solely expose them for several hours, then put them beneath shade for the remainder of the day.

Seedling Technique

Many plant stores promote cactus seedlings. For those who select to go this route, keep away from planting your seedling beneath the soil and, as an alternative plant, it a bit under the soil floor.

At all times, water your seedlings from beneath. Watering your seedling from beneath requires you to put the seed flat on a tray. Subsequent, flood the tray with water, serving to your origin take in water from the underside.

Make sure that the soil stays moist. However, it shouldn’t stand for too long as this may promote rotting. The primary purpose why water would stand for too lengthy is because of poor soil alternatives. We’ll focus on soil how you can combine your cactus soil in a bit.

Lighting is essential for seedlings. A window sill will do; however, watch out not to scorch them. A choice is to make use of artificial lighting.

For those who plan to use artificial lighting, watch out to reveal them to the sunshine for between 8 to 14 hours. A straightforward approach to do that is to switch the light on whenever you get up and change them off an evening earlier than going to the mattress.

Throughout this period, look out for the following signs, as they’ll point out that your seedling is in trouble.

  • Black spots which point out a fungi
  • Algae growth from overwatering
  • Thinning seedlings because of insufficient lighting

The Cutting Technique

Propagating your cactus from a cutting is maybe the most straightforward and most typical technique to grow cactus. All you should do is reduce off the stem of an existing plant.

Subsequent, place your cutting beneath then solar, permitting it to type a callous. Quickly your cutting will begin rooting, finally growing into the cactus. Watch out not to water your plant till you see roots resulting from the cutting will rot.

Root Division

Root division is one more simple technique to grow your cactus. Make sure that you divide the basis as gently as potential to restrict trauma.

The very best time to hold out the division is throughout winter. Throughout winter, the vegetation is dormant; therefore, there’s much less interference with their growth.

Growing Forest Cactus Indoors

Soil Combine

This cactus grows effectively on rocks (lithophytic) and bushes (epiphytic). It’s essential to notice that though the plants grow on bushes, they don’t seem to be parasitic. Due to this fact, the plants don’t acquire their vitamins from the trees and solely use the brushes to assist.

Of their forest or tropical habitats, these plants get their vitamins from lifeless leaves and branches. The leaves typically fall in crevices and supply loads of nutritional vitamins and minerals appropriate for cactus survival.

The soil kind typically isn’t a giant situation for growing most vegetation. Nonetheless, in the case of jungle cactus, it helps to pick the precise soil if you want to increase the plants indoors efficiently.

If you need your forest cactus to survive indoors, ensure that your soil mimics the pure atmosphere wherein these vegetation thrive as much as possible.

When selecting the soil, the first thing that it’s a must to concentrate on is drainage. Your soil wants to drain water to forestall waterlogging, which could make your plant rot and finally die.

Search for a container that’s massive sufficient so that you can combine your ingredients. An instance of the appropriate container is a wheelbarrow.

For consistency, use a measuring system to make sure that you get the precise proportions. Use a small shovel to combine all of your elements.

To create an appropriate soil combination to grow your forest cactus, mix the following ingredients;

Potting soil

Please keep away from the soil with excessive forest products similar to wood chips or bark because they finally rot. The outcomes additionally don’t combine effectively with different elements.


Pumice contains enormous volcanic rocks which might be light in weight.  This ingredient is superb for drainage because it’s porous and ethereal and permits water to cross the way rapidly.  If pumice isn’t accessible in your area, substitute it with perlite, surface, or aquatic plant soil, as these have related options.


Coir fibrous coarse is a material that comes from shredded coconut. Though the material is natural, it doesn’t compose simply.

Coir is superb for holding moisture and doesn’t compact after rewetting. Coir may want a little bit of loosening earlier than including it in your soil. Rub it on a mesh to interrupt it into smaller items.

how to grow cactus indoors


Peat is a good substitute for coir. Please remember that most potting soils already include peat, so be sure that you don’t put an excessive amount of it in your soil combination.

Orchid Bark

Orchid bark serves the aim of aerating your soil. The bark additionally holds moisture to your ground so that it doesn’t dry out too rapidly.

Oakleaf Mold

  • Oakleaf mold gives vitamins to your plants, similar to within the forest or jungle.
  • The following proportions ought to work effectively to your potted cacti;
  • Combine 25% or potting soil with 25% orchid bark
  • Subsequent, add 25% peat
  • Lastly, add five coarse gravel, then pearlite

You’ll be able to mess around with the ingredients to find a combination that works effectively for your plants.

It’s essential to notice that orchid bark finally disintegrates turns into soil. Do not forget that your potted plant wants only 25% of the earth. When the ground begins changing into more extraordinary than the opposite ingredients, it’ll intrude with drainage, and your vegetation may start rotting.

Due to this fact, repot your plant each two to a few years utilizing a recent combination. A perfect time to repot your plants can be after they bloom. After blooming, your plant will begin growing once more, and this may require recent soil filled with vitamins, has aeration, and excellent drainage.


Typically, it would help if you watered your jungle cactus as soon as per week. Do not forget that your cactus is used to a moist jungle/forest atmosphere, so common watering is necessary.

At all times, water jungle cactus extra in the course of the summertime and spring, and taper off in the winter. Twice per week ought to work effectively in the hot months and each different week in the cold months.

The very best indicator that your plants need extra water is to check your soil’s top 2 inches. One other hand of whether or not your plant wants to water is to check the stem segments. If the pieces look dry and shriveled and the soil is dry too, it’s time to water your plant.

Nonetheless, if your soil isn’t dry, however, the stem segments look shriveled, don’t water your plant. Watering your plant when the ground is too damp will cause your plant to begin turning yellow and eventually rot.


Lighting is crucial for the stems because it makes them healthy. Optimum lighting can be important for blooming.

In contrast to desert cacti that may absorb loads of direct sunlight, an excessive amount of light can harm forest cactus. These plants will do effectively in pure gentle. However, be careful in the case of direct daylight, and guarantee they get no more than 5 hours per day.

A great way to ensure that your plants get enough light is to put it within the solar throughout morning hours, then shift it away when it begins getting hot.

Typically, the solar begins getting hotter from midday. However, sometimes local weather patterns change. The climate could be hot throughout the morning hours and chilly within the afternoon. Therefore, be eager on the local weather in your space to see the most effective lighting wants to your plant.


Through the hotter seasons like the summer season, these plants will do effectively in almost 55 to 75 degrees. In winter, temperatures of nearly 55 and 60 degrees will do.


It’s paramount to make use of a cactus fertilizer. Begin fertilizing throughout summer and spring, when the plants are out of their dormant section and are growing in size and height.

Growing Desert Cactus Indoors

Soil mix

It would seem that desert cactus can only grow in sandy soil, but this isn’t the case. Even desert cactus wants nutrient-rich soil, which additionally has good drainage and aeration.

Therefore, it’s paramount to combine cactus-friendly elements, all of which collectively create the proper mix for cactus growth. Right here, we’ll use a lot of the jungle elements combined, with several additions like sand and gravel. Some aspects which might be appropriate for an ideal cactus mix soil are;

  • Potting soil
  • Pumice
  • Pearlite
  • Peat
  • Coir
  • Sand
  • Gravel
  • Rocks

Do not forget that there are nobody size matches all when mixing the elements. Experiment with totally different proportions to search out one which works the greatest for you.

All it’s a must to concentrate on when finding an excellent soil combine: aeration, drainage, simple rewetting, and vitamins. To check the soil, pour some water by way of it to see how fast it goes by way of the earth.

If water sits on the top, this soil may retain excessive moisture and hurt your plant. In case your earth rapidly passes water, that is the perfect candidate.


Though desert cacti are the extra resilient of the two groups, they still want common watering. Most people assume that desert cacti don’t like water. As a result of it primarily grow within the desert.

What folks don’t know is that the cactus is barely capable of surviving in deserts, the place it hardly rains, due to its skill to retailer water. As well as, cactus additionally has different adaptations that restrict water loss similar to stomata solely opening at night time, prolonged dormant intervals, and lack of true leaves.

Test the soil every two weeks to evaluate for dryness. The highest two inches ought to be dry earlier than your water; in any other case, you could be overwatering.

You may have to water extra in the course of the summertime due to temperatures being excessive. Weekly or bi-weekly watering is enough in the hot months. Throughout winter, it would take longer for the soil to dry up, so that you may have to water a couple of times a month.

how to grow cactus indoors from seed


This plant thrives in temperatures of almost 70 and 85 levels through the summertime, spring, and autumn. Throughout winter, the plants can stand up to temperatures of nearly 50 to 60 degrees.


Desert cactus loves sunlight. Hold this plant in an area the place it may bask within the daylight. However, you have to be cautious not to let the sunlight scorch your plants.

For those who dwell in a space where it’s inconceivable for your plants to get sufficient sunlight, strive to use fluorescent tubes. Make sure that your lines are full-spectrum to make sure that your desert cacti get lighting that’s just like that of natural sunlight.

In case your lighting is inadequate, the cactus plants will begin to exhibit a stretchy skinny look.

Hold this plant in an area the place it may bask within the sunlight. However, you have to be cautious not to let the daylight scorch your plants.


Search for a fertilizer that’s particular for cactus. It will give the plant the precise vitamins requirements, not like common fertilizers.

It’s essential to repot each desert and forest cacti once they begin growing too large. Pull out your plant gently, being cautious not to shake off an excessive amount of soil, leaving the basis ball with enough amounts of dirt.

Combine your soil in the precise proportions relying on your cactus class. Next, cactus plant your cactus in an even bigger container.

What To Do When Issues Go Wrong

As a lot as cactus requires little consideration from you, it’s not entirely self-sufficient. If your plant is beginning to look unhealthy, it’s potential to revive it when you determine and fix the issue.

How You Can Fix Common Cactus Issues

Shriveled or Limp Cactus

Inadequate watering makes your plant seems shriveled, whereas overwatering offers your plant a distinctive limp look. Depending on the climate, you should water your plants as soon as each week (dry areas/summertime) or twice a month (moist or humid local weather or during winter).

Overwatering may cause your plant’s roots to rot. If you wish to check your roots’ health, gently pull out your plant from the soil. Wholesome roots should be white, whereas rotting roots ought to be both black, brown, or look mushy.

If left unchecked, the rot may unfold to different components of your plant, killing your plant. Save your plant from root rot by scrapping off the breakdown. To make sure that your plant doesn’t get a re-infection, repot it with recent soil.


An excessive amount of sunlight is dangerous to your plant. If your potting container heats up too quickly or your plant is on a window sill, this might amplify the quantity of warmth your plant receives, resulting in burns.

The burns may encourage the expansion of fungi similar to Colletotrichum (Gloeosporium).

Initially, your plant can have small spots that can later flip brownish. After that, your plant will produce pink spores that can unfold to different components of your plant, destroying it. You’ll be able to avert this problem by making use of a cacti fungicide. After that, keep away from subjecting your vegetation to excessive warmth and sunlight.

Insect Infestation

Mealybugs can infest your cacti and sometimes spread quickly to different vegetation in your house inside a brief interval. Because the bugs sap vitamins of your plant, it could have stunted growth, which may be frustrating.

An easy technique to do away with the bugs is to spray them with water from a hose.  You may also go to your native cacti vendor for a mealybug insecticide.

Inspect it for bugs for those who plan to purchase a potted plant out of your local cacti store. Typically, bugs begin growing within the outlets, and your vendor can deal with your plant earlier than you go residence or offer you a bug-free one.

Final Thoughts

When growing cactus plants, it’s paramount to create an atmosphere that can favor your plants. Arrange the precise soil, lighting, and temperature properly from the beginning, and you should have healthy plants.

For first-time plant proprietors, issues may go fallacious; however, luckily, there are several easy issues that you can do to right the problems.