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Why Isn’t My Cactus Growing? (6 Reasons and Solutions)

With their prickly skin, waxy stem, and differing hues, Cactus is a very intriguing plant to have in your homes.

This may be why most homeowners prefer keeping Cactus in their homes. The problem comes up when it gets to the rearing part. Because you’d think that being strong, hard-willed plants, Cactuses could survive anything.

But that’s not completely true.

On the contrary, cactuses have a hard time managing and growing in environments that they’re not familiar with. So, if you’ve ever found yourself in a situation where you’d have to ask yourself: Why isn’t my Cactus growing? Then this article, right here, is for you.

In this article, you’ll be getting all the answers to your question – Why isn’t my Cactus growing? So read on and find the perfect solution to your problem.

Why Isnt My Cactus Growing
is my cactus growing – via Reddit

The Reasons Behind Why Isn’t My Cactus Growing

Your cacti aren’t like you’re every other plant, which means you can’t treat it like you treat other plants. To get started with the solution of your query- Why isn’t my Cactus growing? Here’s the list of reasons that your Cactus would do better with and without:


Many cactus owners decide to water their Cactus once a week (thinking it to be too little) when it’s too much!

Your Cactus is used to growing in dry areas with scarce water availability.

So, it doesn’t need much water.

Watering them would keep their soil moist, inevitably leading their roots to rot.

You can know that you’ve been overwatering your Cactus when you find that:

  • Your Cactus is shriveling or lying on the ground.
  • Brown spots have emerged on your Cactus (right where they meet the ground).
  • Their soil is always wet.


Sun is important for all plants. For a cactus, however, it’s its driving force.

Why? Because cactuses grow in deserts within the burning shade of the sun.

They need direct sunlight every few hours a day to grow. Be careful, however, to limit the direct dose of sun to only a few hours a day. Giving too much sunlight wouldn’t be too good for your Cactus, either.

A few tell to know when your cacti haven’t had their fair share of the sun:

  • They are thinning out.
  • The limbs of your Cactus are stretching towards any source of direct sunlight.
  • Your Cactus was growing fine, but then the growth spurt slowed down.
  • Your Cactus isn’t growing.

Lack of Space

Lack of space is a pretty common cause as to why plants stop growing. Because to develop, your plants— their roots to be more specific—need more space.

There is, however, another side to this point. Plants are sensitive. Transplanting them too often causes them to get stressed. Or worse, you can accidentally damage their roots in the process.

So, it would help if you tried to re-pot your Cactus in an adequate pot the first time you brought them home. Not too large, not too small.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t re-pot them anymore. Just try to reduce the number of times you would have to do it by playing smart.

If space is the problem for your cacti, then it may stop growing, wilt and fade.

Why Isnt My Cactus Growing 2
Why Isn’t My Cactus Growing – via Reddit


Cactuses thrive in environments they’ve always been accustomed to. They prefer sandy, dry sand, and soil as their base.

So if you’ve been wondering: Why isn’t my Cactus growing? And in response, if you’re loading it with your love and heap tons of fertilizer… You need to stop.

Your Cactus isn’t used to, and it doesn’t need too many nutrients to grow. In fact, soil rich in organic matter works the other way around for cactuses than it does for other plants.

It’s best to minimize the fertilizing to a minimum and do it only when you’re sure your Cactus is growing.

Some indication for you to know that it’s time to curb in your love and the nutrients:

  • Your Cactus has a few thin thorns on its skin.
  • Your Cactus is not flowering.
  • You will find no daughter plants rooting around your Cactus.


All plants need air to stimulate the levels of humidity in the environment. Placing your Cactus in an area that has very little air circulation can lead to the blossoming of fungal diseases, which in turn will attack and minimize the health of your cacti.

Apart from reducing the number of times, you water your Cactus, you can take certain measures to ensure that your Cactus stays healthy.

Especially seeing how your Cactus contains a good proportion of water—a perfect mix with high humidity for it to rot or droop.

A way to know that your Cactus is suffering due to lack of air circulation is by checking its frame. If it has brown spots on its structure and it’s drooping, then you would need to find a better place to keep your Cactus.

Resting Period

Now, you might have never heard of this before, but your plants have a time frame when they unwind and rest. During this period, they store their strength for the upcoming season.

Cactuses have two dormancy periods in a year. The first period is winter, which starts around October and stays till March.

There is less sun during this time. You should try to minimize watering your Cactus too much during this period.

The second phase is in summer when the sun is high and scorchingly hot. To protect its tissues, your Cactus slows down its growth.

This period stays for about around 35 days, on average.

How Can You Fix This?

Don’t ask yourself, “Why isn’t my cactus growing” anymore. Let’s find out how you can save your Cactus and help it thrive.

  • Reduce the number of times you water your Cactus
  • Provide it with sufficient space and air.
  • Create a familiar environment.
  • Remove the rotten roots and the damage done to your Cactus.
  • Use Hydrogen peroxide with water in a 10:1 ratio to treat any wounds in your Cactus.
  • Don’t use organic soil.
  • Place your Cactus in an area with adequate sunlight, and make sure that the temperature is to their liking.
  • Use a pot with a drainage system.
  • Use artificial light when needed.


Here are a few things that you, as a cactus owner, would have found useful in answering: Why isn’t my Cactus growing?

Cactus isn’t like the other evergreen plants you have in your homes—it’s their lure and their biggest weakness—and this is why they need special care when it comes to optimizing their growth and health. Share your comments in the comment section below and let us know your views.