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An old man cactus with plenty of character and personality is something you might try cultivating in your house (Cephalocereus senilis). Even though it doesn’t have wrinkles or a pension, the cactus has fluffy white tufts of hair all over its body, which makes it seem like it’s living on the streets. A senior person’s pate-like look is achieved with thin, long, billowy hair that provides mild cushioning.
When it comes to most of the United States’ growth zones, indoor cactus cultivation is the best option. Learn how to cultivate an old man cactus and bring the adorable tiny plant with the fluffy white hairstyle into your house with these simple instructions!
About Old Man Cactus Houseplants
Outside, in USDA zones 9 and 10, this cactus is a good choice. They are indigenous to Mexico and need hot, dry areas with plenty of sunshine. To keep itself cool in its native environment, the plant grows long hair on its stems. They can grow up to 45 feet (13 meters) in height as potted plants, but they are often slow to thrive as potted plants.
In most cases, old man cacti are cultivated as houseplants, where they remain tiny and manageable in a container for the whole of their lives. A southern or western-facing window and temperatures of at least 65 degrees Fahrenheit are required for successful indoor cactus cultivation, according to the National Cactus Society (18 C.).
The ideal conditions for growth are winter hibernation temperatures below 65 degrees Fahrenheit, which should be provided (18 C).
Learn How to Grow an Old Man Cactus
When growing cactus inside, use a cactus mix or a combination of sand, perlite, and dirt. Grow old man cactus in a pot that has not been glazed. As a result, any extra moisture will be able to escape from the pot. In order to thrive, old man cactus houseplants need a dry soil environment, and over-watering may result in decay and illness.
Although the old man cactus requires a bright, warm area, he has very few additional requirements. However, keep an eye out for bugs that may be hiding in your hair, since they may be very dangerous. Mealybugs, scale, and flying pests are examples of pests that are found in the home.
Old Man Cactus Maintenance
In between watering, let the soil dry out to a depth of a couple of inches (5 cm). Once or twice a week throughout the winter months is sufficient watering for most plants.
Apply cactus food in the early spring and you can be rewarded with a profusion of rich pink blossoms on your cactus! Fruits that are 1 inch (2.5 cm) long in the wild are produced, although they are very unusual in captivity-grown plants.
There is very little leaf or needle drop, and there is no necessity to trim the old man cactus as part of its maintenance.
Crop Development for Old Man Cactus
Cuttings or seeds of the old man cactus are a simple way to reproduce the plant. The process of turning seeds into anything identifiable as a cactus takes a long time, but the result is a low-cost and entertaining hobby for youngsters.
Cuttings should be allowed to callus on the counter for a couple of days in a dry place. Then, using a soil-less medium such as sand or per-lite, insert the cut end with the dried, white callus.
If you want the greatest rooting results, keep the cutting in bright but not scorching light where temperatures are at least 70 degrees F (21 degrees C).
Keep the small cutting dry until it has taken root. Then you should care for your new old man cactus houseplants as if they were a mature example of the succulent.