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How Do Cactus Cuttings Re-Root Themselves? - Varnish + Vine

How Do Cactus Cuttings Re-Root Themselves?

If you're looking for a household plant that looks great and doesn't require a ton of maintenance, then a cactus is a great choice. Not only are cacti hardy and long-lasting, but they are well-suited to beginner gardeners, easy to care for, and can enhance the aesthetic of any space.

Best of all, once you have a single cactus, you'll be able to take cuttings and duplicate your cactus so that you'll only need to buy one, and you can grow as many as you'd like. But how do you actually take cuttings from your cactus? And how do cactus cuttings re-root themselves?

In this article, we will explain how to take cuttings from your cactus and how they re-root themselves so that you can grow more cacti from your mother cactus.

How To Take Cuttings From Your Cactus?

Most species of cacti, and other succulents for that matter, can be propagated easily by taking a cutting from the stem or a leaf. The process is really quite easy. For cacti with stems that form different segments, such as the Monstrose Cactus, Peruvian Apple Cactus, or San Pedro Cactus cutting a whole segment will work best.

On the other hand, cacti species that form clumps should be cut from the clump in order for new roots to form properly. Generally speaking, you should never split a segment or clump in half as this will kill the entire segment. Remember, each segment or clump is potentially a new cactus, so cut them accordingly.

How Do Cactus Cuttings Re-Root Themselves?

For the best results, you should take your cactus cuttings in the late spring or early summer. As mentioned, you simply cut away one segment or clump, ideally at a 45-degree angle, taking care to remove any off-shoots. It's a good idea to dust the ends with a rooting compound that will help promote new growth.

You should let the cutting sit for a while, ideally a week or so, until you see a callus form, at which point you can fill a pot with growing medium or cactus soil and insert the cutting. You should bury the cactus about one-third of the way, with two-thirds above the soil, and ensure you place the newly potted cutting in an area with lots of sunlight. Also, remember to give it a drink of water so that it will have the oxygen it needs to take root.

That's pretty much it; after a couple of weeks, you should notice that your cutting is growing and has become a whole new cactus.


Cacti make great indoor house plants, thanks to their hardiness and ability to thrive with minimal maintenance. There is really no need to buy more than one cactus of each species because it’s easy to take cuttings and propagate new cacti from your mother plant. By following the tips and tricks outlined in this article, you'll be able to duplicate your favorite cactus so that you'll have as many as you want without needing to buy a ton of different succulents.


Kelsey Hanke

Hi! I bought a 4’ cactus cutting and have had trouble getting it to root. I put rooting compound on it and placed it in a mix of desert sand, pumice stone and cactus/succulent mix soil. I’ve tried to keep the soil slightly damp to promote root growth but haven’t had any. I pitted it 4/14. Any help would be appreciated!

Linda Hagemann

How does the mother Peruvian plant heal after taking the cutting? Is the mother plant permanently deformed on top? Does the top re-grow eventually or do you wait for an off-shoot? Thank-you for the article.

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