Cactuses are famous as low-maintenance houseplants, and many people value them because they are hardy as well as attractive. Unlike other popular types of houseplants, cactuses usually will not be in danger of wilting if you go away for a week-long vacation and are very forgiving if you simply forget to water them.
Yet despite their tolerance of a wide range of growing conditions, cactuses have a few basic needs that must be met in order for the cactus to be beautiful and healthy. Knowing the fundamental of cactus cultivation can help you grow many different varieties of cactus.
Indispensible Cactus Facts
Understanding how to grow healthy cactuses starts with understanding the kinds of environments where cactuses thrive. Most cactuses grow naturally in regions that are extremely dry for prolonged periods and that have intermittent spells of heavy rainfall. Coming from these types of conditions, most cactuses are good at absorbing water relatively quickly and then storing the water long after the land has become parched.
These adaptations give the cactus its reputation for being able to survive with a caretaker who forgets the occasional watering. Unfortunately, cactus cultivation is usually ill-suited for a very moist environment.
Though cactuses can survive in many environments where other plants would perish, too much moisture can be hazardous to them. If you know about cactus cultivation, you will be aware with the fact that a cactus’ roots can begin to deteriorate if exposed to too much water.
With cactus cultivation it is important to understand about a cactus's water tolerance that is why it is important to water your cactus by completely soaking the soil and then allowing the soil to dry between waterings. Letting the soil remain moist for a long time will be detrimental to the health of your cactus and might even result in its death.
To help you avoid over-watering, there are many varieties of potting soil that are specially designed for cactuses. Available at any gardening center, these soils often have the texture of loose sand or gravel. By not retaining too much moisture, these soil mixtures keep cactuses’ roots dry enough to be healthy.
One of the most important things to rebember with cactus cultivation is that different varieties of cactus have different lighting needs. While most cactuses prefer a dry environment, not all of them require bright light. Some cactuses need a lot of very bright light to grow and flower, while others would be scorched by direct light.
Knowing the basics of cactus cultivation and about the particular type of cactus you’re growing will help you provide the best environment for your cactus. Gaining a familiarity with the fundamental cactus facts is especially useful when you have a type of flowering cactus that might require special nutrients or growing conditions.
Many types of flowering cactus will be unable to produce flowers unless they have received the right amounts of water, light and plant food. If your cactus did not include growing instructions when you purchased it, the staff at a garden store should be able to identify it for you and offer helpful growing tips.