It may seem intimidating to try to grow such a specialized plant as a cactus. After all, many species are used to living in the desert. However, cacti aren’t as challenging to keep as you may think. Well-draining soils are the key to keeping these plants healthy. Look no further than the Cactaceae family if you want an attractive, low-maintenance houseplant.
Burro’s Tail (Sedum morganianum)
Burro’s Tail is an example of the whimsical names you’ll see in these plants. It differs from many cacti because of its draping form, hence, its name. It’s a succulent like the garden variety. It does best in bright, indirect light and low moisture. Best of all, it’s non-toxic to pets.
Blue Hens and Chicks (Echeveria glauca)
How can you not like a plant named Blue Hens and Chicks? The name describes its growth pattern with larger globular forms surrounded by its smaller offspring. Its colors are stunning. It’s also pet-friendly.
Bishop's Cap (Astrophytum ornatum)
The Bishop’s Cap is a smaller cactus that will get just over 3 feet tall in the right conditions. It starts as a pudgy globe before becoming cylinder-like as it ages. It produces beautiful yellow flowers in the early summer as a reward for proper care.
Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus and Echinocactus)
The Barrel Cactus describes plants from two genera with a similar form and growth pattern. You’ll find them in the American Southwest. Their defining characteristic is the dense covering of sharp spines they have. They are easy to grow in bright, indirect sunlight.
African Milk Cactus (Euphorbia trigona)
The African Milk Cactus is a slow-growing, long-lived plant with a striking form with vibrant colors. Many consider it a symbol of good luck. Unfortunately, it is toxic to pets because of its milky sap that can irritate you or your pup.
Angel Wings Cactus (Opunta albispina)
The Angel Wings Cactus belong to the same genus as the Prickly-Pear Cactus. The two plants look similar, too. It prefers it on the warmer and drier side. It’s not a tall plant, but it has a wider 5-foot spread. If you’re lucky, it’ll produce its tasty red fruit.
Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera)
The gift of the Christmas Cactus is its pretty pink flowers. Unlike other plants we’ve discussed, this one lives in rainforests. That can explain how different it looks compared to other cacti. Indirect light is best with regular watering to keep it healthy.
Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea)
We’d be remiss if we didn’t include the king of cacti, the Saguaro Cactus. This plant fares best in full sunlight as its wild counterparts enjoy. It is another long-lived species, with some reaching 200 years old! It grows slowly and will stay happy in a smaller pot until it eventually outgrows it.
As you’ve seen, you have many choices if you want to try your hand at growing cacti. They’ll reward you with a plant that is easy to grow with a minimal amount of care. Plenty of indirect sunshine and occasional waterings will allow them to thrive indoors.