Step into the captivating world of the spiral cactus, scientifically known as Cereus forbesii ‘spiralis,’ a botanical treasure from Peru. While growing in popularity, the spiral cactus remains more elusive than its common counterparts. Once mature, this striking cactus can soar to heights of 6 to 13 feet, boasting a diameter of 4 to 5 inches, and is one of the fastest-growing cactus varieties, rewarding caretakers with swift growth.
With its alluring blueish-green hue and velvety touch, this cactus leaves an indelible impression. Its prolific blooming capabilities grace us with awe-inspiring flowers that steal the spotlight. If fortune smiles upon you, these blooms offer an opportunity for pollination, culminating in the development of large, non-poisonous purple fruits. While they might not be your pets’ best friend with their sharp spines, you can be happy to read that it is non-toxic.
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Given the rarity of this plant, locating a Spiral Cactus can be challenging and expensive, so no questions that it’s crucial to provide proper care for its longevity. You probably don’t want to buy another one as a replacement. Let’s see how you can keep this beautiful cactus alive and happy at home!
- Water: As you could probably guess, this plant is not exactly a thirsty one, but watering them once every two weeks (in the hotter season) is definitely needed. If you’ve potted it in a 5.0″ pot, it requires about one cup of water every 12-14 days when not exposed to direct sunlight. You can decrease the frequency in fall and winter. It is also a good idea to remove the plant from its tray during watering, because this way the excess water can be drained.
- Temperature: Protect it from temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit and rapid temperature fluctuations at all costs!
- Soil: The best way to go is to choose a well-draining potting soil that is specifically for cacti plants. Repot every other year or when the plant outgrows its pot, using a heavy pot to ensure stability for taller growth.
- Light: Spiral cactus plants love full sun, so giving them at least 4 hours of it a day is a must. However, be careful not to torch them for too long, because younger plants are more sensitive than established ones.
Our extra tips for Spiral Cactus plants:
- Even though this plant is not poisonous, you should definitely handle it with care due to its sharp spines. Keep it away from your kids & pets too!
- Young cacti can’t handle too much direct sun, thus you should monitor them for pale spots, and relocate them to a shadier spot if necessary.
- If you are not sure about how much water you should give to your Spiral Cactus, maybe invest in a moisture meter for precise watering measurements. They are not that expensive and can save you a lot of trouble.
If you want to expand your collection, you can propagate these plants from stem cuttings with a pretty high success rate. Just make sure to use a clean and sharp blade when you cut the stem. After taking the cutting, put it in a cactus potting mix and see how it develops.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much sun does spiral cactus need?
Spiral cactus plants love full sun, so giving them at least 4 hours of it a day is a must. However, be careful not to torch them for too long, because younger plants are more sensitive than established ones.
How often do you water a spiral cactus?
To maintain optimal conditions, the Spiral Cactus in a 5.0″ pot requires about one cup of water every 12-14 days when not exposed to direct sunlight.
Should I mist or water my spiral cactus?
Nope. Misting your Spiral Cactus can lead to diseases, moldy pads, or brittle roots. Cacti are perfectly happy without misting.
How do you know if a cactus is overwatered?
Signs of overwatering include leaf or stem browning, base discoloration, mushiness, and rapid plant decay.