Category Archives for Desert Gardening

3 Plant Shade Umbrellas That Will Make Your Garden Better

Do you have a garden or a backyard with plenty of plants in it?

Are you looking for a way to shade your plants more successfully and without sacrificing the appearance of your garden to do so?

Have you ever considered an umbrella for this purpose?

In this article, we’ll introduce you to three great, high-quality plant shade umbrella options to help you find something that’s sure to please. With one of these beautiful umbrellas in your yard, you should have no trouble shading your plants and keeping up with the aesthetic appeal of your home, too.

But why would you want to use plant shade umbrellas, anyway? Do you really need something like this?

In short, yes you do—as long as you’re growing plants that don’t want direct sunlight all the time. There are some plants like that out there, but for the most part, it’s much better for your plants to get just a little bit of sunlight throughout the day and have some periods of shade, too.

Using an umbrella to help shade your plants will give them a more comfortable growing experience and encourage better flowering or fruiting. So pick your favorite product from our list below and enjoy healthier, happier plants!

1. Cricket Hill Garden Umbrella

umbrella for plants

With the Cricket Hill Garden Umbrella, you’ll be well on your way to making your garden space even more beautiful than ever before! This umbrella is made of bamboo with a nylon top that holds up well to wet and dry weather both. These products can be used for a longer period of time or can be stored until the next season as long as you are careful to clean and dry them before putting them away. This umbrella comes in at 5 feet and 3 inches tall and is 33 inches across, making it a great all-around size that will work well for all sorts of different plants. These umbrellas feature an ivory-colored bamboo center pole and accents and a soft floral print on the fabric top.

Pros

  • This is a beautiful and elegant umbrella that looks great with just about any type of decor.
  • This umbrella holds up well to use in different types of weather.

Cons

  • This umbrella is less long-lasting than some of the others listed here, despite its higher price tag.
  • This umbrella only comes in one color or pattern option.

2. Classy Shade Plant Umbrella

plant shade umbrella

If you’re the type of person who wants to protect your plants without taking away from the overall natural beauty of your backyard or garden, check out the Classy Shade Plant Umbrella. This excellent product comes in a variety of different sizes and options and is designed to seamlessly blend into the elegance of your outdoors pace. This product works like traditional umbrella, but it features a square and vented design that helps protect your plants just a little bit more than a round umbrella might. Pick between a version that sticks into the plant or ground itself or one with a base, and choose the height you want to work with to find the right fit for your garden.

Pros

  • There are several custom options available with this umbrella to make it work well for your plants.
  • This umbrella is easy to keep clean and maintained without a lot of extra effort.

Cons

  • This is a very expensive product that may be well over budget for some buyers.
  • This umbrella’s colors may fade out more easily in the sun than some of the others listed here.

3. PlantShade Dot

plant covers for sun

The PlantShade Dot is a relatively new product that has nevertheless become popular with gardeners fairly quickly. This product comes in at about 20 inches across and can be adjusted up to a height of three feet, depending on the type of plants you’re working with. This product is designed to look sort of like a flat platter on a stick rather than a traditional umbrella shape, and it allows some light to filter through while simultaneously protecting your plants from getting burned to a crisp in the hot, direct sunlight. This product also allows for a lot more visibility than some of the other options out there since the discs are translucent.

Pros

  • This shade option is made of UV-coated polypropylene that can hold up well to exposure to the elements no matter how the weather might turn.
  • This is a recyclable product, so if you’re worried about being more eco-friendly, this is a great way to go.

Cons

  • These products may be out of stock sometimes because they have gotten fairly popular.
  • These products may be overall a little bit flimsier than some of the others on our list or on the market.

Conclusion

Did you find a good garden umbrella to suit your needs? There are a lot of options out there, and if the ones listed above aren’t right for you, then you’re sure to find something else out there if you’re willing to take time and go shopping. Of course, you can also use garden shade cloth if you prefer, but this does sacrifice a little bit in terms of style and sophistication. This is just one of the many reasons why people tend to prefer garden umbrellas over shade cloth overall.

umbrellas to shade plants

But do you really need an umbrella in your garden at all? Is it possible to use regular umbrellas for your garden? In most situations, there’s no reason why you can’t use a real umbrella if you’re looking for complete shade or very indirect lighting. However, this may not look as nice or as elegant overall, and if your plant needs more than just a small amount of subtle lighting, it’s not going to do well with a big umbrella over the top of it. Umbrellas that are made for human use are also more likely to be hot and steamy underneath them, which may not be ideal for many types of plants.

With that said, however, some people do prefer to buy a large patio-style umbrella in an oversized option and angle it so that it provides some shade for plants in the garden while still allowing sunlight to get through. If you want to go this route, you certainly can! Just remember that a patio umbrella is going to be a little harder to clean, maintain, and store if you choose to than smaller garden umbrellas will be.

No matter which option you go with, you should be well on your way to happier plants in no time!

BONUS VIDEO:

9 Different Types Of Cactus Plants You Need To Know About

Are you looking for a hardy and beautiful cactus to bring into your home?

Do you want a houseplant that can stand up to a lot of wear and tear as well as a few beginner mistakes?

Did you know that there are actually a lot of different types of cactus plants, some of which are better for beginners than others?

In this article, you’ll be introduced to several different kinds of cactus plants to help you get started learning about these excellent succulents. You’ll find out which ones are better for keeping indoors and which ones are easier to grow than others.

Although there are many subspecies of cactus plants, they can all be grouped into 9 different main categories. Throughout this article, we’ll walk you through these 9 categories and make sure you know the difference between each one, so you can better recognize the cactus plants you’re looking at the next time you go shopping.

Depending on your climate and the amount of care you plan to put into cactus keeping, you may want to choose some of these categories over others. But don’t worry! Regardless of how you plan to take care of your cactus, there’s definitely a great household cactus plant out there just waiting for you to discover it.

Read on to learn more about the 9 types of cactus plants and to determine which ones are best for you.

1. Hedgehog Cactus

The hedgehog cactus is the name given to plants that fall into the echinocereus genus. These are succulent plants that grow low to the ground, which causes it to form shorter spines. Because of its size and the size of its spines, this type of cactus earned the nickname “hedgehog.” During the springtime, these plants can grow flowers when they reach the right maturity and are kept in the right conditions. When searching for pictures and names of cactus plants, you’re likely to notice this cactus in its flowering form.

types of cactus plants

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This plant grows in small groups that usually include a handful of separate stems, but could grow up to 50 or more stems depending on the size of the plant. The stems don’t get any taller than about a foot each, which makes these good cactus plants to keep indoors. They do, however, tend to grow a lot of spines.

  • This cactus plant grows naturally in rocky and sandy soil, so it needs to be planted in a pot of similar soil in your home.
  • Hedgehog cactus plants must be grown in full sunlight or in very light shade, but cannot grow in full shade.
  • Be sure to plant your hedgehog cactus in a well-draining pot, as it will quickly develop root rot otherwise.
  • You can easily grow a hedgehog plant indoors, and they also thrive outdoors.
  • If you’re trying to get your hedgehog cactus to flower, you’ll need to recreate warm spring rainy weather by setting your indoor temperature correctly and watering your plant enough.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Echinocereus arizonicus
  • Echinocereus berlandieri
  • Echinocereus bonkerae
  • Echinocereus mojavensis
  • Echniocereus pectinatus
cactus plants types

2. Barrel Cactus

The barrel cactus may be one of the first things you think of when you imagine cactus plants. They are mid-sized to large and shaped like cylinders instead of like towers or balls. They are covered in big, sharp spines that can be painful if you come into contact with them. These plants grow flowers at the top of the cactus and eventually will grow fruit. Unlike the prickly pear cactus, however, this fruit is not edible by humans. Because this cactus was once widely harvested for the production of cactus candy, it is now a protected species in the wild.

kinds of cactus plant

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It may be very difficult to grow a barrel cactus at home, and it can be tough to even find a starter plant depending on where you live. These plants tend to prefer their wild habitats more than they like being grown indoors or even in a garden, but with the right perseverance and the proper growing conditions, you can still help a barrel cactus to thrive. However, take note that these plants are not good for beginners, and they’re not suited well to growing indoors either.

  • The barrel cactus may be started indoors, but once it’s taken root in its pot it needs to be transplanted outside immediately for best results.
  • These plants prefer the temperatures they can find in the Sonoran Desert in the United States and Mexico. If you live in a very cold climate, you will be unable to grow a barrel cactus well at home.
  • Under the right conditions, you can keep your cactus plants flowering for a long time to come.
  • These plants may grow very tall and could be difficult to maintain because of their spines.
  • Since this is a protected species, you may need to check with the individual laws in your area to find out if the barrel cactus can be grown privately or not.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Echinocactus grusonii
  • Ferocactus wislizeni
  • Ferocactus cylindraceus
  • Ferocactus emoryi
cactus plants types

3. Ball Cactus

Ball cactus plants include a variety of different species, but all of them share the same general physical characteristics. These plants look like small green round balls that are covered in yellow or white spines all over the plant. During the right growing conditions, usually in the early part of spring, colorful flowers will grow on top of the cactus plant in shades of pink, red, yellow, and white. This is the appearance many home cactus growers are going for, but it can be difficult to get your indoor ball cactus to grow flowers without a lot of care.

 names of cactus plants

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Despite the difficulty of getting the flowers to grow, the ball cactus is a great option for beginners and anyone looking to grow cactus plants indoors. These plants don’t require the same high temperatures that a lot of their cousins need to thrive, so you can keep them inside without as much concern for the overall temperature of your home. This plant likes colder winters and temperatures down to around 50 degrees Fahrenheit at night. While it does still need to be watered regularly, it doesn’t require a lot of water to thrive and it can survive through droughts very well.

This plant never gets more than a few inches tall, although it may grow wider over the years. This is a very hardy type of cactus that is capable of living up to 20 years under the right growing conditions. Although it can live outdoors comfortably, it may be easier to provide this plant partial direct sunlight and partial shade if you keep it indoors. It doesn’t do well in constant direct sunlight because it may shrivel up over time.

  • This is a very prickly cactus plant and you will need to keep it away from young children and pets. You may also want to put on gloves if you’re going to be handling it for repotting.
  • There are no major pest concerns you’ll have to worry about with this plant, which makes it great for beginning cactus growers.
  • Most of the flowers that grow from this plant are pink or white. If you’re looking for red or yellow, you may have to shop around a little bit more.
  • Plant this cactus in sandy, rocky soil for best results.
  • During the winter, these plants may go dormant, but this doesn’t mean they’ve died. It just means you’ll need to warm them up or wait for spring to see them come to life again.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Gymnocalycium mihanovichii
  • Escobaria vivipara
  • Escobaria missouriensis
  • Parodia scopa
  • Parodia magnifica
cactus plants types

4. Columnar Cactus

Columnar cactus plants have an appearance that suits their name perfectly. When identifying cactus plants, these are some of the easiest to take note of. As with most categories of cactus plants, there are a few different types of plants that fall into this label. Unlike many other categories, columnar cactus plants can be found across many different genus groups instead of coming from just one or two. The term “columnar” refers simply to the style of a given cactus and doesn’t have much to do with its genetics beyond that.

photos of cactus plants

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Columnar cactus plants usually grow very tall and may not be best suited for indoor growing. With that said, however, it does take several years for these plants to start growing so large, so you may be able to get several years of indoor life out of them before you need to transplant them. Just remember that eventually, you are going to need some outdoor space for your columnar cactus plant to thrive, and you’ll want to replant it outdoors before it gets too big to deal with.

The giant Saguaro cactus falls into the category of columnar cactus plants. Most columnar cactus plants are made up of individual tall, long columns that are covered in spines and attached to the same main trunk. In nature, they may be taller than humans very often, but when grown at home, it may be more difficult to get them to grow this large.

  • A small cutting from a columnar cactus plant can be used to propagate a new plant with the right care and setup. This is a great way to get new plants without having to go out and purchase fully-grown ones.
  • Plant cuttings of columnar cactus plants in rocky, sandy soil such as pumice. This helps them take root and thrive very quickly, especially when watered correctly.
  • Columnar cactus plants should be kept indoors at temperatures higher than 68 degrees Fahrenheit at all times. These plants, especially when they’re younger, aren’t able to tolerate cooler temperatures very well.
  • The columnar cactus should be watered sparingly, but that doesn’t mean you can get away without watering it at all. Once a week should be right unless your climate is extreme.
  • This plant can develop root rot very quickly, so take care not to overwater and not to place in soil that can’t drain well.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Cephalocereus senilis
  • Cleistocactus smaragdiflorus
  • Carnegiea gigantea
cactus plants types

5. Prickly Pear Cactus

A prickly pear cactus plant is always a stunning addition to a cactus collection. When learning to identify cactus plants, this may be one of the first ones you start to recognize. Prickly pear cactus plants can be as small as a couple of feet tall or as large as 7 feet tall, depending on the species in question. These plants look more like succulents in general than specific cactus plants, especially because they aren’t totally covered in spines like other types of cactuses usually are. Instead, the prickly pear has large leaf-like pads that feature a few small patches of spines rather than full coverage.

names for cactus plants

https://www.desertusa.com/cactus/photos/pp-flower.jpg

This cactus plant is popular because it is edible. There are many different recipes that incorporate the pad portions of the prickly pear plant as well as the fruit this cactus produces at the right times of the year. It’s even believed that eating this plant may help reduce bad cholesterol and boost good cholesterol, although this claim does still need some backup. Under the right conditions, you may even be able to grow the fruit of this plant at home yourself.

  • Although the prickly pear isn’t very dangerous to handle, the spines it does have may break off and get lodged in the skin, so be cautious with it.
  • This cactus requires gravelly soil and dry conditions to thrive. However, it will still need to be watered lightly on a regular basis.
  • Since this is a desert cactus plant, it does best in temperatures that mimic those of the desert at day and at night.
  • ​Eventually, if you’re growing one of the larger prickly pear plants, you may need to transplant it outdoors so that it can continue growing well.
  • Smaller prickly pears can be kept as houseplants as long as they have access to full direct sunlight every day.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Opuntia ficus-indica
  • Opuntia ellisiana
  • Opuntia violacea
  • Opuntia rufida
  • Opuntia aurea
cactus plants types

6. Cholla Cactus

The cholla cactus is a unique and quirky little cactus plant that grows in jointed segments attached to a main trunk. This is a very sharp and prickly plant that can cause injury if not handled correctly, so it pays to put on some gloves if you’re going to be repotting it. These plants are very versatile and come in many different shapes and sizes, from shrub to tree and a few in-between as well. The smallest plants in this category come in at a few feet in height, while the largest may be 12 or more feet tall. Of course, if you’re looking for an indoor plant, stick to the smaller ones.

images of cactus plants

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You’ll need to offer your cholla cactus gritty soil that can drain very well. It needs direct sunlight if possible and should be kept at warmer temperatures. A little bit of sand in the soil may also help it grow, as this plant is native to the Southwestern part of the United States where it grows on the sides of rocky slopes in the desert. This plant does need to be watered regularly but doesn’t require much water to thrive.

  • This plant is often plagued with mealybug pests. If you’ll be growing a lot of cholla cactus, be prepared for the presence of mealybugs.
  • If you grow a cholla cactus plant that starts small and gets much larger, you’ll need to replant it outdoors where it can grow to its fullest.
  • If your plant starts to develop rotting or dying spots on the stems, cut them off with pruning shears and cut back significantly on the amount of water you’re giving your cactus.
  • This is a good cold-weather cactus that is happiest at around 70 degrees Fahrenheit but will still grow at temperatures as low as 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • This plant will survive (although may not flourish) at temperatures as cold as 5 degrees Fahrenheit.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Cylindropuntia bigelovii
  • Cylindropuntia fulgida
  • Cylindropuntia imbricate
  • Cylindropuntia echinocarpa
  • Cylindropuntia leptocaulis
cactus plants types

7. Pincushion Cactus

Pincushion cactus plants are native to the Sonoran Desert, so they require similar conditions to grow correctly. They stay fairly small throughout their lives and remain very popular choices for people looking to grow cactus plants indoors. Like many names for cactus plants, these little species got theirs because of their appearance. They are short, round, and covered in small spines that look like pins sticking out all over the plant.

cacti pictures

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If you’ve ever taken a look at cactus plants available for sale at home repair stores and even in some department stores, you may have seen a pincushion cactus there. There are several different varieties of this plant available, but most of them grow fairly low to the ground and make great additions to indoor potted plant setups. Most varieties of pincushion cactus will not grow larger than about 6 inches tall, which means you could always keep it on your windowsill throughout its life if you prefer.

  • The pincushion cactus is very prickly, so take care not to put it in a place where pets or very young children could come into contact with it.
  • You should plant a pincushion cactus in gritty soil and try not to water it too often. It also should be allowed to drain very well to prevent root rot.
  • Never place your pincushion cactus in a place where it will get below 50 degrees at night. These plants prefer warmer temperatures.
  • During certain parts of the year, this cactus may grow flowers if the temperature and water levels are kept up.
  • This cactus can be grown from offshoots of a larger pincushion cactus plant.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Mammillaria matudae
  • Mammillaria candida
  • Mammillaria bocasa-na
  • Mammillaria hahniana
  • Mammllaria zeilmanniana
cactus plants types

8. Totem Pole Cactus

The totem pole cactus is a large and incredible cactus that you may have seen in cacti pictures before. These plants are so large when fully grown that they look more like trees than cactus plants, so they will eventually get too large to be grown indoors. However, it takes several years for them to reach this level of growth. They need gravelly soil to thrive and don’t require a lot of water to stay healthy and grow strong. The totem pole cactus is a natural mutation of the Senita cactus plant.

different types of cactus plants

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There are no flowers are fruits that grow on the totem pole cactus, and this may make it less interesting to some home growers. However, if you’re willing to put forth the effort and eventually more your plant outdoors, it can be a fun and exciting piece of indoor décor for many years.

  • The totem pole cactus doesn’t have any natural pests and it isn’t prone to getting sick from plant diseases, either, which makes it a great option for beginning cactus keepers.
  • This plant must be kept in full sunlight and should never be allowed to drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Do not water this plant until the soil it’s planted in has become completely dry. Otherwise, you’ll risk rotting the roots quickly.
  • This cactus has no thorns or spines, so it’s safe to keep around pets and small children without worry.
  • You should never use organic mulch on this cactus plant.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Lophocereus schotti
  • Lophocereus gatesii
  • Lophocereus bahiensis
cactus plants types

9. Organ Pipe Cactus

Organ pipe cactus plants are truly unique and beautiful. When you see pics of cactus plants in this category, you probably see the giant ones that grow in nature. These cactus plants can only be found in nature in the Sonoran Desert located in the United States and Mexico. Because of their natural climate, these plants cannot tolerate much cold at all. Even though it does get old at night in the Sonoran Desert, this cactus plant grows at higher elevations that are not as cool as the lower parts of the desert floor.

identifying cactus plants

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The organ pipe cactus is made up of several stems that grow from one joined base. They curve gently outward and, when several form in a bunch, they resemble the pipes of an old organ. These plants can grow up to 20 feet tall, but it does take several years for this growth to take place. Because of this, you can begin growing an organ pipe cactus indoors, but note that you’ll need to relocate it outside after it starts to outgrow its space.

  • If you’ll be trying to grow an organ pipe cactus from a seedling stage, note that it will need a lot of shade and plenty of water to get started.
  • At night and during the right time of the year, these cactus plants will flower. This usually takes place during the hottest part of the summer.
  • In late summer, the organ pipe cactus grows red fruits that can be eaten by humans as well as many of the animals that live in the Sonoran Desert.
  • If you plan to grow one of these plants indoors, you’ll need to keep it very warm in order for this cactus to thrive.

Specific Cactus Plants in This Category

  • Stenocereus thurberi
  • Stenocereus stallatus
  • Stenocereus alamosensis
cactus plants types

Conclusion

Within each of the 9 categories of cactus plants, there are several different species you can choose from depending on your specific needs. We hope that this article has helped you understand a little bit more about how to differentiate between each of these so that the next time you go shopping in person or see images of cactus plants in your online shopping adventures, you’ll be better able to tell what you’re about to purchase.

Remember that there are 5 important tips you should keep in mind when you’re choosing a cactus to grow inside your home. The specific needs of an indoor cactus are much different from outdoor plants, so pay attention to these suggestions before you pick up your new prickly friend:

1. Temperature hardiness 

temperature of cactus

Think about the temperature your home stays during the whole year. It might climb to 80 degrees indoors during the summer but dip as low as 60 in the winter—or your temperatures may fluctuate even more than this. Choose a cactus that can handle a lot of extremes, especially if there’s no way to regulate the temperature in the room where you’ll be keeping your plant.

2. Size

If you’re looking for something to sit on your windowsill, you’ll be limited to a small handful of cactus plants to choose from. If you’re keeping your cactus in a pot on the floor, you’ll be a little bit freer in terms of what you can and can’t choose. Either way, pick a cactus that won’t eventually outgrow its space.

3. Spines

If you have young children or pets who may be able to access your cactus, be sure to choose one that doesn’t have a lot of spines. If it does, try to pick one with softer spines to prevent any unforeseen injury to your little ones or furry friends.

kinds of cactus plants

4. Trunk and spines

Check out the trunk and spines of the cactus you’re looking at. They should be colorful, not too soft, and free from any black or squishy parts. If your cactus is looking a little brown, pass on that one and try another one.

5. Light needs

Last but not least, think about how much light your plant is going to need. Will you be able to provide it with the right amount and intensity of lighting all day long? If you’re keeping it in a windowsill, will the direct light be too strong for the variety you’re looking at, or will it be just right?

a. Using blinds or curtains can help filter light for plants that are little more sensitive than others, but be sure you research the types of cactus you’re looking at before you choose one that needs light you can’t offer.

If you’re shopping online, be sure you ask the seller for any photos of cactus plants you might need to help you choose. In person, take your time to closely and carefully examine each plant before you make your final decision.

Pretty soon, you’ll have the perfect cactus—or set of cactus plants—to bring home and use in your interior decorating for many years to come!

BONUS VIDEO:

9 Of The Cutest Mini Cactus Plants For Sale Online

Are you looking for a way to spruce up your interior without having to devote a lot of space, time, or money to your decorating plans?

Do you want to add some greenery to your home or office but don’t have much spare room to work with?

Have you always wanted to grow plants but know you’re not very good at keeping them alive?

And if you’re looking for more information about how to get started with them, you’re in the right place!

Whatever your reason might be, if you’re looking for a low-maintenance, low-cost, and attractive way to decorate with plants indoors, miniature cactus plants are perfect for you.

In this article, we’ll introduce you to nine of the highest-quality, cutest, and best options cactus plants for sale online. We’ll show you a few different options so you can figure out which one is best for you—whether you want to start with seeds, cuttings, or fully established plants.

If you’re an experienced cactus or succulent gardener, we’ve got a variety of unique and fun seeds for you to check out. However, if you want to decorate without all the extra trouble of growing plants from the ground up, we’ve got you covered there, too.

There are a lot of fun things you can do with a mini cactus, and if you’re willing to put a little more money into your decorating plans, you may choose to pot your cactus plants in cute and unique containers or even hang them from the ceiling for a great look that’s all your own.

Whatever you choose to do, read on to find the perfect plant to help you get started!

1. Cactus Bonsai Variety Flowering Color Seeds

New Arrival! Fresh Garden Seeds 30pcs/pack Cactus Bonsai Variety Flowering Color Seed Cacti Rare Lithops Pots Office Mini Plant Succulent

If you’re looking for a great way to grow your own cactus plants from seeds, look no further than this Cactus Bonsai Variety Flowering Color Seeds pack. This pack comes with 30 seeds to help you get started growing the mini cactus plants of your dreams in no time. There are many different types of cactus plants represented in this set, so no matter what you’re looking for, you should be able to grow it perfectly with just a little effort and attention from you.

Pros

Cons

  • By starting with these seeds, you can grow many different types of unique and quirky cactus plants.
  • This is an affordable option that will give you lots of seeds for a great price.
  • Once they take root, these cactus plants are durable and can be grown indoors with little to no trouble.
  • Getting these plants started from seeds may be more effort than some home gardeners would like to put in.
  • You will need to purchase everything else you need to grow these plants, including growing medium and pots.
  • Because this is a seed variety pack, it’s impossible to tell what type of cactus you’ll be getting until you start growing them.

2. Flowering Cactus Mini Grow Plant

Flowering Cactus Mini Grow Plant indoors or outdoors by Buzzy

When you want to grow your own cactus but don’t want to go to the trouble to collect everything you need separately, take a look at this Flower ring Cactus Mini Grow Plant instead. This plant growing kit comes with a small clay pot, a handful of seeds, and enough growing medium to get your cactus plant established as soon as you put it all together. This is one of the most convenient small cactus plants for sale online, and it makes a great gift as well!

Pros

Cons

  • This little kit comes with everything you need to get started, and you won’t have to spend any more money on your cactus for some time.
  • This cactus will eventually flower over time, which makes it very attractive for indoor gardening.
  • This kit is packaged in an attractive container that makes it an excellent gift-giving option for any holiday or special occasion.
  • This kit is quite a lot more expensive than most of the other options listed here and may be over budget for some home gardeners.
  • You’ll only receive enough seeds for one mini cactus in this set.
  • You may need to upgrade the included pot fairly quickly once your cactus begins growing, as it will outgrow this space eventually.

3. 10 Seed/Pack Mini Cactus Seeds

New Arrival!10 Seed/Pack mini cactus seed (Astrophytum) succulents plants seeds DIY home garden Rare flower Flores,#OEPPEE

When shopping for mini cactus plants for sale online, you may find that it’s easier to come across seeds than it is to locate established or fully grown plants. As long as you’re willing to put forth a little extra effort, you can save a lot of money this way in the long run. With this 10 Seed/Pack Mini Cactus Seeds set, you’ll have plenty of high-quality seeds to help you grow beautiful astrophytum cactus plants in your own home. Add a little color, texture, and whimsy to any room with your own home-grown mini cactus.

Pros

Cons

  • These seeds will grow a unique type of cactus that stands out among others you may have growing in your indoor garden.
  • This pack includes ten seeds to help you get started growing your astrophytum plant.
  • This is a very hardy and durable type of cactus that can handle a lot of beginner mistakes.
  • Since this is a rare type of cactus than some others listed here, the seeds may be too expensive for some budgets.
  • As with any plant, growing from seeds can be more difficult and complicated than growing from an established plant or cutting.
  • You will not receive any extras with this pack of seeds and will need to buy potting material and containers separately.

4. Instant Cactus/Succulent Collection

Instant Cactus/Succulent Collection - 8 Plants 2' pots

Are you looking for a quick and easy way to bring some cute baby cactus plants into your home right away? With this Instant Cactus/Succulent Collection, you can do just that! This set comes with eight different types of cactus plants, each of which is planted carefully in a 2-inch pot and plenty of growing medium to keep them happy for months to come. For a reasonable price, you’ll have plenty of cactus plants to set out around your home and liven up any of your interior spaces. Best of all, these are hardy cactus plants that don’t need a lot of complicated help from you to thrive. They’re the perfect solution to indoor low-maintenance gardening!

Pros

Cons

  • When ordering this product, you’ll receive a good variety of cactus plants to get started with.
  • The plants you receive are very healthy and sturdy, and they are hand chosen so you won’t receive any dead ones.
  • Shipping is very quick and timely, which is ideal when mailing live plants.
  • In some rare cases, one or two plants have been known to arrive damaged during transit.
  • The plastic pots included are flimsy and will eventually need to be upgraded, although you can take your time with this.
  • The individual types of cactus plants aren’t labeled to help you determine which varieties you’re growing.

5. DIY Garden Mini Succulent Cactus Plants

Higarden Cactus mix seeds 500 units / bag. DIY garden mini succulent cactus plants seeds

Are you trying to buy cactus plants online that are already potted in something a little more attractive than a simple plastic black pot? If so, these DIY Garden Mini Succulent Cactus Plants may be just what you’re looking for to set up the perfect indoor garden. These little plants are potted in cute ceramic pots that are designed to look like natural rocks. They come with their own individual growing medium as well as already established cactus plants, so you don’t have to worry about growing them from seeds. The pots are small enough to fit on a desk or windowsill, but decorative enough to make a statement no matter where you place them.

Pros

Cons

  • Each individual pot is drilled for proper drainage to keep your cactus plants safe and healthy.
  • The pots feature their own draining trays so you don’t have to worry about water spilling everywhere when you care for your cactus plants.
  • You’ll receive a variety of cactus types when you order this product.
  • The growing medium will eventually need to be replaced since it isn’t ideal for cactus growth.
  • These types of succulents may get too large for mini pots over time.
  • The included pots may arrive broken or damaged due to shipping in some rare instances.

6. Cactus Rebutia Variety Seeds

Best-Selling!10pcs/Lot cactus Rebutia variety flowering color cacti rare cactus seed office mini plant succulent,#M2PGRI

If you’d like to try your hand at growing a unique and colorful type of cactus plant from the seed up, check out these Cactus Rebutia Variety Seeds. They’re a great option for anyone looking to get a little more hands-on with the cactus growing experience. When they’re fully grown, these cactus plants sprout big, beautiful flowers on top, which can help add a lot of excitement to any space. They’re just as hardy as most other varieties of cactus and succulents, too, so you don’t have to worry about them being too difficult to raise even when you start with just the seeds.

Pros

Cons

  • You will receive ten seeds in this set, which is plenty to help you get started.
  • These cactus plants grow very well in a variety of different climates and circumstances.
  • You can save a lot of money by purchasing seeds instead of a grown cactus plant.
  • If you are inexperienced with growing cactus plants, this may be very difficult for a beginner.
  • These cactus plants may eventually grow too large for indoor gardening.
  • These can be an expensive set of cactus seeds because this type is rarer than others.

7. Mini Cholla/Cylindropuntia

Cactus Cold Hardy-Mini Cholla/Cylindropuntia spp Plus 3 Free Surprise Cacti/Succulents

This Mini Cholla/Cylindropuntia is a cute and hardy little cactus plant that’s sure to liven up your indoor garden space in no time. This is a partially established plant, so you don’t have to worry about trying to grow it from seeds, but you can still have a little bit of fun raising it until it’s big enough to grow a colorful flower on top. This is a popular strain of cactus plant that can add a fun splash of color to your favorite room. With this cactus, you’ll get a small pot and potting medium to help you get started.

Pros

Cons

  • This is a hardy type of cactus that can usually handle quite a lot.
  • This cactus is carefully potted so that it will thrive for a long time without needing a larger pot.
  • This isn’t as prickly as some types of cactus, which makes it safer for use around children.
  • This product has been known to arrive with some damage due to shipping.
  • The included soil may spill out during the shipping process and require repotting.
  • This cactus is only partially established and may be difficult to grow if you don’t have prior succulent experience.

8. 15 Assorted Succulent and Cactus Cuttings

Sensual Succulents 15 Assorted Succulent Cuttings

If you’re searching for a slightly different option in terms of your online cactus shopping, check out this set of 15 Assorted Succulent and Cactus Cuttings. You’ll get a variety of different cuttings to help you propagate cactus plants of your own. You can have a little fun with indoor gardening when you purchase this package of cuttings, but you also don’t have to be as mindful of your cactus as you would if you started it from seeds. Best of all, with many different types of succulent and cactus plants represented in this set of cuttings, you’ll have lots of vibrant colors to use in decorating your home.

Pros

Cons

  • This is a very cost-efficient way to buy cuttings that can save you a lot of money on purchasing full cactus plants.
  • This set of cuttings comes with directions on how to grow them successfully.
  • The packaging is careful and durable enough to keep the cuttings from becoming damaged in transit.
  • The individual types of succulent aren’t labeled, so you may have trouble figuring out what you’re growing.
  • In some instances, a few of the cuttings have arrived dry, but this is rare.
  • If you don’t have experience growing succulent these may be more difficult than purchasing an established plant.

9. Succulent Cactus 20 Pack

Shop Succulents | Can't Touch This Collection | Assortment of Hand Selected, Fully Rooted Live Indoor Cacti Plants, 20-Pack

When you need a lot of cactus plants for sale online to really make your indoor garden come to life, check out this Succulent Cactus 20 Pack. This is a box set of several different types of cactus plants that are all established in their own separate small plastic pots and in their own growing medium, too. Although some of these cactus plants may be doubles in terms of variety, each one is hand selected so you’ll be sure to receive a beautiful and healthy specimen. Set them out around your home and enjoy the beauty of cactus plants no matter where you are.

Pros

Cons

  • Each individual small pot has plenty of holes for draining to keep your plant healthy.
  • These are sturdy cactus plants that grow as well on a patio as they do in a windowsill or on a desk.
  • You will receive a good variety of plants when you order this product.
  • Depending on the time of year, it may be difficult to find this set of cactus plants, since they may be out of season.
  • The potting mixture in these plants has been known to spill out during shipping, so you may need to do a little maintenance when your plants arrive.
  • The individual plants aren’t labeled, so you may have trouble figuring out which types of cactus you receive.

Other Indoor Small Plants

Growing mini cactus plants indoors can be a fun and rewarding experience. But what do you do when you want to keep an indoor garden that offers a little more variety than just a bunch of cactus and succulent plants? You can do a lot with a little when it comes to mini plants, and in this section, we’ll recommend a few of our favorites that look great when you use them in home décor alongside your favorite mini cactus.

cactus plants indoors

1. Asparagus fern

This is a cute little cousin of the water lily that tends to crop up unwanted in outdoor gardens now and then. While it grows fairly quickly, you can keep it pruned back and it will fit nicely into just about any small container. It likes indoor climates just as well as outdoors, so as long as you provide it with enough light, it can add a fun and unique texture to your indoor décor that’s quite different from that of your mini cactus garden.

2. Pilea peperomioides

This is a very cute plant that technically does fall into the succulent category, although it looks much different from other types of succulents you may think of. When it’s grown, it looks like a spray of stems with big, wide, round leaves at the end of each one. It can get fairly large, but once again, careful pruning and cutting will help keep it small enough for a mini indoor garden.

3. Tillandsia

Also known as air plants, tillandsia is getting very popular among home gardeners. The name tillandsia refers to the genus of this plant, and it contains quite a few individual types. One of these is Spanish moss, which may be very common outdoors if you live in a warmer climate. Tillandsia doesn’t require any soil to grow, but it should still be watered or sprayed with water regularly.

4. Honorable mention: herbs

If you want to grow something indoors to go along with your cactus plants and you’re willing to put forth a little more effort to cultivate your houseplants, why not try an herb garden? This can be a great way to add a lot of variety to your indoor plant life, and it can also provide you with lots of fresh herbs to cook with whenever you like. As an added bonus, some indoor herb gardeners have even been able to sell their extra herbs locally and make back a little money spent on gardening.

Conclusion

There are a lot of great cactus plant options out there just waiting for you to discover them! Growing mini cactus plants isn’t too difficult, but if you choose to start from seeds or cuttings, you will need to spend a little more time working on your plants than you would if you choose to use established plants instead. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re starting up a mini cactus garden:

cactus plant options
  • Cactus plants do need some water. It’s a myth that they can grow with no water at all, but it is true that cactus plants don’t usually need nearly as much water as other types of plants. The amount of water your cactus needs largely depends on its type, its growing medium, its container and the climate of your home. In most situations, watering once every couple of weeks should be enough, but do your research to be sure that’s true of your type of cactus.
  • Some cactus plants are more sensitive than others. Most of the mini varieties you’ll find for sale are hardy and can handle a lot of beginner mistakes. However, there are some types out there that may not be as durable. It’s best to stay away from the less sturdy types of cactus plants if you’re a beginner.
  • Try not to place your plant in a drafty area. Sometimes, too much of a draft can dry out or chill your cactus plant too much, and this may cause it to die too quickly. Try not to position your plant underneath a heating or air vent for the same reason. It’s best if you can keep your mini cactus in a place where the temperature doesn’t fluctuate a lot.
  • You’ll need to repot eventually. All mini cactus plants will eventually outgrow their containers if they’re thriving, so be prepared to put them in something larger a few years down the line!

When you keep these tips in mind, you’re sure to have a great time with your cactus gardening plans no matter which product or products you pick. Good luck, and happy growing!

BONUS VIDEO:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ARSlCHUleME

How To Care For Cactus Plants 101: A Handy Guide

Are you interested in growing something green in your home but feel like you just end up killing every plant you touch?

Do you find it difficult to remember to water or keep up with plants for so long that they are usually not salvageable by the time you remember?

Or do you live in a hot and humid climate where keeping plants indoors can be almost as challenging as keeping them outside?

If any of these are true of you, chances are good you’re the perfect candidate for indoor cactus growing!

Caring for cactus plants can be a little bit tricky, but it doesn’t take nearly as much intricate attention to detail that growing other types of plants might. Even inexperienced new indoor gardeners are sure to succeed after just a few practice rounds with an indoor cactus. You can prevent losing any plants at all by reading up on the tips and tricks listed in this article.

Below, you’ll find plenty of information on cactus plants and how to raise them. You’ll be able to locate all the knowledge you might need on an individual cactus growing topic, and you may even learn something you never thought of before in the process!

By the time you get through this article, you should be ready to head out there and pick up a plethora of beautiful cactus plants to try growing on your own. Whether you opt to try growing several at once or just want to start with one, we’ve got all the tips you need to make the right choices from day one.

Now, let’s learn about cactus growing!

Cacti Needs vs. Other Plant Needs

Learning how to care for cactus plants means forgetting a little bit of what you know about other types of plants. It also means understanding more about the cactus itself than you might already know, too. Here are a few basic points of interest to keep in mind before you start educating yourself on cactus plant growth in your own home.

start educating yourself on cactus
  • A cactus is not like any other type of plant. It is part of the succulent family, which means it’s capable of storing water to keep itself hydrated for many months and even, sometimes, over a year.
  • As you probably already know, a cactus has spines instead of the leaves that are more commonly found on other types of plants. Despite having no leaves, it can still go through the photosynthesis process because its skin is green.
  • The skin of all succulents is waxy because this texture makes it much more difficult for moisture to evaporate from inside the plant. This means it can retain water for longer, which makes it capable of thriving in even the hottest and most arid natural situations.
  • All cacti have roots just like other types of plants, but some have very shallow root systems that are susceptible to rot very easily.

Now that you’ve learned a little bit about cacti vs. other plants, it’s time to focus more on how to grow your own cactus plants.

Water, Soil, and Sunlight

Like any other type of plant, cacti require water, soil, and sunlight to flourish. Of course, once again, like with any other plant, there are specific needs to keep in mind when it comes to these three important elements of growing your cactus. Whether you plant your cactus indoors or outside, you must keep these three things in mind above all else. With that said, however, cacti are generally much more forgiving than other types of plants, which means if you make a mistake you’re not going to automatically kill your plant.

growing your cactus

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  • Water: Watering cactus plants is the part of their care that can be the trickiest. Some people believe they can go without water altogether, and that’s not really the case. Jungle cacti do well when watered about once a week during the cooler months and up to twice a week in the hotter part of the year. Desert cacti may only need to be watered once or twice a month to stay hydrated enough to thrive. Take care not to overwater your cactus plants.
  • Soil: When choosing the right soil for cactus plants, keep in mind that some of these plants often grow attached to trees or rocks in nature, while others grow in the middle of the desert. Jungle cacti grow well in pearlite, orchid bark, and peat moss, and do best when they can be raised in a combination of these. For desert cacti, you’ll want to use a combination of potting soil, rocks, peat, sand, pumice, and even gravel to simulate their growing environments. Cacti cannot be grown in sand alone.
  • Sunlight: Many people who try growing cactus plants at home believe it’s okay to put them out in direct sunlight and leave it at that. While cacti can handle a lot of heat and sunlight, there are a few more considerations to keep in mind. Jungle cacti, for example, do best when they have direct sunlight for part of the day and shade for the rest of the day. Desert cacti, on the other hand, can get full sun all day after they are fully grown and established plants but should have a combination of light and shade every day while they are still establishing.

Potting or Ground Planting

Choosing to plant your cactus in the ground or in a pot can make a big difference when it comes to the ease or difficulty you face when growing it in the future. Generally speaking, if you live in a very cold climate, it may not be wise to plant your cacti outside without the ability to move them indoors during the colder weather. However, if you’re willing to put forth a little extra effort, you may be able to make it work even so. Here are a few tips for choosing where to plant your cacti, whether indoors or out.

plant your cacti
  • Whether you plant in the ground or in a pot, be sure your cactus has plenty of opportunities for the base to dry out completely. Never plant in an area where water pools for a long period of time, and never pot in a container that doesn’t have good drainage. Doing either of these will risk rotting the roots of your plant.
  • Plant most cacti in loamy soil in pots or in the yard. You’ll probably need to work on the soil in your garden or yard if you’re planning to plant your cacti outside. Mix your soil with gravel to make it even easier for your plants’ roots to drain well.
  • If you choose to plant your cacti outdoors and you live in a cold climate or somewhere snow occurs frequently, pay close attention to the temperature outside. If it’s going to get below freezing for more than a couple of nights in a row, it’s time to cover up your plants. Use Styrofoam cups to cover your smaller plants or old towels and sheets to cover larger ones or bigger areas.

Placement of Your Cactus

Choosing the proper placement for your cactus can help you improve its overall quality and help it thrive instead of just survive. While most cactus plants are hardy enough to withstand improper placement, they won’t be happy, and you won’t see results that are nearly as beautiful as they would be when you take care to place your cactus in the right location from the beginning.

placement for your cactus

https://www.flickr.com/photos/jdaciuk/13179689734/

  • There are two types of cacti: those that need full sunlight and those that need shade. It’s important to know which type you’re working with when it comes to choosing the right placement in your home.
  • Indoor cacti should be limited to those that prefer at least some shade unless you’re able to provide them with constant access to either sunlight or a grow light. Cacti that sit on a windowsill that isn’t obstructed by blinds or curtains during the sunny parts of the day may be able to come from the sun-loving category.
  • Planting your cacti in the yard requires some extra knowledge about the types you’re working with, too. Some cacti grow very large and must be placed in an area where they can spread out or grow tall as they thrive.
  • All cacti should be placed in a location where their roots won’t be sitting in stagnant water without being able to drain for too long.

Cactus Fertilizing

You don’t necessarily have to worry about fertilizing your cactus plants, but they will definitely be happier if you do. However, it’s important not to go overboard when it comes to fertilizing cacti. Too much fertilizer can actually make your plant much less healthy overall and may even stunt or halt its growth. Here are just a few tips to help make it a little easier to determine the right way to fertilize your cactus.

cactus plants fertilizing

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  • All succulents, cacti and otherwise, should be fertilized with a diluted liquid fertilizer instead of with a solid fertilizer. This makes it easier for the fertilizer to reach the plant without choking it, and it also cuts back on the risk of overdoing it.
  • When your plants have become established, and especially when they get older, it’s important to consider introducing fertilizer into their soil. This can be a great way to perk up an older plant that’s looking a little drab as it ages.
  • Remember, however, that you might not have to fertilize your cacti at all. Many cacti thrive under harsh conditions and simply won’t show any difference if you use a fertilizer on them.
  • If your plant is young or hasn’t become fully established yet, refrain from using fertilizers, as they may actually do more harm than good.

Pests and Illnesses

As with any living thing, there are pests and illnesses you should keep in mind when raising your cacti. Unfortunately, sometimes these may strike without much warning at all, and they may be very hard to remedy or cure, depending on the severity of the situation. Listed here are just a few of the most common pests and diseases you may come across when raising cacti.

pests and diseases
  • Fungal disease – Different types of cacti are susceptible to different fungal disease, but they are all somewhat similar. These diseases may cover a plant in a mold, cause it to develop black spots, lead to stem rot or even cause the loss of seedlings.
  • Mosaic disease – This is a common cactus illness. It may cause sunken yellow spots on the plant that will eventually overtake it. This is a virus that can be spread by pests or by cutting a plant without first sterilizing the cutting tool.
  • Mealy bugs – These are the most common pest of cacti. Otherwise known as the wooly aphid, this insect breeds quickly and sticks to the plants as it munches away at them, destroying them quickly. Some cactus gardeners use lacewings as a natural predator for these insects, while others rely on systemic insecticides to take care of the problem.
  • Red spider mites – These insects are common in gardens and don’t cause as much widespread damage as mealy bugs. They will, however, cause brown spots and scarring on plants they have infected. Offering enough humidity and ventilation for your plants may keep these pests away.

Growth Rate and Normal Progression

indoor cacti

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When it comes to growing cacti, there’s no set specific in terms of growth rates or the normal progression of these plants. However, you should notice your plants getting larger or fuller over time if they’re thriving. If you don’t see your plants improving in one or both of these categories for a long while, this may be a sign of a larger potential problem.

Outdoor cacti will generally grow much larger over time than indoor cacti. Indoor cactus plants will probably only grow by a couple of inches every year, so take some time to measure your cactus if you’re concerned about whether or not it’s actually growing and thriving. You may not notice such a subtle change over time otherwise.

How to Find a Good Place to Buy a Cactus

buy cactus plants

Now that you’ve learned so much, you’re probably wondering where to buy cactus plants, right? Depending on where you’re located, it may be very easy to find cacti for indoor and outdoor planting, or you may have to order them online. No matter where you purchase your cacti from, there are a few good, solid tips you need to keep in mind to be sure you get a great quality plant.

  • If you’re buying in person, look over the plant thoroughly. Check for any soft spots, discoloring, scarring, or signs of weakness in the stem. If you pick up the plant and several pieces fall off, this is also not a good sign. If the plant is established, feel the soil to see if you can tell if it’s been recently overwatered.
  • If you’re buying online, don’t be afraid to ask for specific photos of what you’re interested in buying. If you’re buying from a very large-scale seller, you may not be able to get these photos, so instead take a look at reviews to see if other customers have been satisfied with their plants.
  • If all else fails, ask around. Ask friends who have successfully started cactus gardening, or even call up local stores or residential communities that use cacti in their outdoor decorating. This can be a great way to get a word-of-mouth recommendation for a local store in your area.

5 Best Cactus Types for Home Gardens

Whether you’re choosing to plant your cactus indoors or outdoors will help you determine the type of plants you need to be looking at. In this section, we’ll give you a few quick tips to help you narrow down your options. If your favorite type of cactus isn’t listed here, however, don’t worry—you can probably make it work by doing a little extra research and making sure you provide it with everything it needs to thrive.

cactus indoors plant

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1. Sea urchin cactus – otherwise known as echinopsis.

This cactus is small and can handle extremes in temperatures ranging all the way down to 35 degrees Fahrenheit without showing signs of stress or damage. It also does better in shade or indirect sunlight, which makes it a good choice for anyone looking to plant a cactus indoors. They are popular choices because they grow flowers.

2. Jade plant – also called crassula.

These plants need bright direct light or, at least, bright indirect light, but besides that specification, they still do very well when kept indoors. They must be watered more frequently than some other types of cacti, but they are quite popular because they don’t have any sharp spines, which makes them safer for use around the home.

3. Aloe – a popular plant all the way around.

This cactus (yes—aloe is technically a cactus) can be grown both indoors and outdoors in the right conditions, and it’s very hardy. It does well in direct sunlight for part of the day and shade for part of the day, so if you plant it outdoors, be sure to choose a good location for it. This plant should not be kept below 50 degrees Fahrenheit for best results. In warmer climates, it will thrive and grow huge in your yard.

4. Prickly pear

If you’ve ever driven past a yard that uses cacti in its landscaping, you’ve probably seen a prickly pear in the yard. This is a very “cactus-looking” cactus that also grows flowers now and then, which makes it a beautiful and popular choice for yard planting. If you live in a place where the temperature drops below freezing often, it should be kept in a pot that is brought indoors during the colder months.

5. Barrel cactus 

This cactus is mid-size, round, and spiky, which makes it popular for anyone looking to plant a traditional-style cactus in the yard. It must be planted in the sun but also needs a little bit of shade, so take care when choosing where to put your barrel cactus. This plant will become dormant in the colder months, so you won’t need to water it very often when this happens. Take care, however, not to forget to water it when the weather starts to turn warm once again.

Conclusion

Now that you know all about cacti care, it’s time to get started growing cactus plants in your own home! Remember that the climate in which you live will have the greatest effect on whether or not you’ll be able to successfully grow your cactus plants outdoors or indoors, and keep in mind that most of the best-kept cacti are those that are potted and kept either indoors or on a covered porch, patio, or lanai. With that said, however, there’s nothing stopping you from trying to grow your cactus plants wherever you might see fit!

Keep in mind the information listed above to help you make the right decisions about how to raise your cactus plants. Remember, too, that you can choose to start your cactus from a small cutting from another plant or purchase semi-established plants to help you get started on the right foot. Both of these options have their pros and cons, but if you’re a beginner to the world of growing plants at all, starting with an established plant is probably your better option.

Either way, make sure you have everything you need at home before you bring home your cactus plants. While cacti are very hardy and can handle a lot of mistakes, it’s still a good idea to be prepared for potting, repotting, and proper placement and watering from day one. This way, you won’t have to worry about repairing any potential damage that might come from these common beginner mistakes.

In no time, you’re sure to have plenty of beautiful, vibrant cacti as part of your interior décor. You’ll soon find out just what keeps people coming back time and time again to indoor cactus keeping!

BONUS VIDEO:

How To Make Cheap Raised Garden Beds The Easy Way

Are you looking for a great way to spruce up your backyard without having to spend a fortune to make it happen?

Do you want to grow your own veggies or beautify your yard with flowers but aren’t prepared to dig up the whole yard?

Do you live in a place with a homeowner’s association where in-ground gardening is not permitted?

There are a lot of reasons why you might be interested in learning to make cheap raised garden beds, and in this article, we’ll introduce you to several options to help you get started!

Below, you’ll find out why many home gardeners just like you choose to build a DIY raised garden bed in the first place. You’ll also be walked through the three most popular methods of creating these garden beds, and you’ll be able to figure out which option is best for you and your backyard situation.

Finally, at the end of the article, we’ll give you a few tips to help you figure out the best placement for your garden bed so your plants have the greatest opportunity to thrive and live long healthy lives. We’ll make sure you’re ready to get started building raised beds cheap in no time!

Now, it’s time to get started!

Why to DIY A Raised Garden Bed

There are a lot of reasons why people just like you have been creating their own DIY raised garden beds at home for a long time. This fun project has become more and more popular in recent years, and chances are good you’ll be able to find a great reason for you to jump in and give it a try, too.

 DIY raised garden beds

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  • Raised beds are an affordable alternative to in-ground gardening. It can be very costly to set up a full garden, but putting together a raised bed isn’t much more expensive than using pots to grow your plants. If you have a little funding to get started, you can make a beautiful garden bed that’s all your own.
  • You can move some raised beds fairly easily. If you’re looking for something you can pack up during the winter or even something you might be able to move with you sometime down the line, a raised wooden bed or even a raised bed made of tires can give you this opportunity.
  • If you live in a place where gardening isn’t permitted, raised beds usually are. Many homeowner’s associations don’t allow in-ground gardening because they want to keep backyards looking fairly uniform. However, they almost always allow raised bed gardening, since this doesn’t seriously affect the quality of the yard.
  • If you live in the city but want to try homesteading or more off-grid living, raised beds can help. People who want to grow their own food don’t always have the luxury of living on a farm, but keeping a raised garden bed full of veggies can be a great alternative.
  • Even if you live in an apartment or condo with a very small yard, a raised bed can usually fit well. If you don’t have a ton of yard space to work with, a raised bed can be custom-built to fit into just about any area you’ve got available.

1. Wood Raised Garden Beds

wooden garden bed

https://www.flickr.com/photos/muddybones/5802965130/

There are many different ways to go about building a raised wooden garden bed, but for the most part, they tend to be similar methods. One of the most attractive reasons people choose this method is because of how cost effective it can be, even in the long run. You can also find all of the materials you’ll need at your local hardware or home repair store, and there’s a good chance you have at least some of them lying around the house already, especially if you’re a fan of big DIY projects. Wooden garden beds are great options if you’re looking for something you can easily relocate in the future.

Materials

wooden garden bed materials
  • 10 (2x4) pieces of untreated lumber
  • Exterior deck screws
  • Plastic sheeting for heavy duty use
  • Mesh hardware cloth
  • Garden soil
  • Plants
  • Circular or compound saw
  • Drill and bits
  • Tape measure
  • Staple gun
  • Shovel
  • Rake
  • Durable work gloves
  • Circular or compound saw

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Instructions

1. Start by measuring and marking your lumber pieces as desired. While you can make your garden beds any size, we recommend measuring six 3’x9” boards, six 6’ boards, and ten posts at 10.5” each.

2. Use the circular saw to cut these pieces of wood. If you do not have a circular saw or feel like you can’t operate one safely, you can usually get this type of cutting done at many home repair stores.

3. Attach the boards that will make up the walls of your garden beds and position the posts flush against the ends of the longer walls. They should be slightly set back from the shorter walls.

4. Drill holes to get started with the posts, and then attach them firmly with exterior screws.

5. Continue until you have formed a large box. When finished, the support posts should be on the inside of your garden box.

6. Place your garden box where you want it to be located in your backyard, and use your shovel to make a deep indent around it in the ground.

7. Remove the box temporarily and use your shovel to loosen and remove the top layer of grass from inside the area where the box will be positioned.

8. Use the staple gun to attach hardware cloth to the bottom of the garden box.

9. Use the staple gun to attach heavy-duty plastic sheeting to the inside of the walls of the garden box.

10. Place the box in its final position and fill it with gardening soil, compost, or both.

11. Plant your plants as desired and water appropriately.

12. Congratulations! You have just finished your raised garden bed.

2. Repurposed Tire Raised Garden Beds

repurposed old tires garden

https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/64/196235050_6af753b052_b.jpg

Have you ever heard of making a raised garden bed out of repurposed old tires? This is a popular method, although it has only gained popularity in recent years with crafty DIYers. Although this option might be a little more expensive to get started with, you can usually get a lot of life out of a tire garden bed, and you’ll also know you’re doing your part to help keep unwanted rubber out of landfills by incorporating it into your backyard setting, too. If you have a farm or even know someone who can supply you with plenty of old tires, be sure to check out this option.

Materials

materials for repurposed old tires
  • Old tires of any size, depending on what you want
  • Stainless screws
  • Mulch and garden soil
  • Plants
  • Paint
  • Tape measure
  • Shovel
  • Drill
  • Sturdy heavy duty plastic
  • Mask, goggles, and hearing protection
  • Durable work gloves

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Instructions

1. The first step is to choose your tires in the right sizes. Select tires that you can stack easily on each other, about three high, depending on the type of tire you use.

2. Note: Some DIYers have found that they can extend the lives of their plants significantly by cutting out the sidewalls of the tires and stacking what’s left. If you go this route, you will need to use a jigsaw to cut the sidewalls, and you will need many more tires to get the job done. This option isn’t for everyone, and if you don’t want to utilize power tools for your task, you can skip it. Just note that your plants may not be as long-lived if you use the tires as-is.

3. Paint each tire with exterior-safe paint. You can also choose to paint designs on the sides of your tires if you’re looking for something to match a specific theme. Take your time with this step, as it can be difficult to thoroughly paint a tire.

4. Be sure to wait for your paint to dry completely before moving on to the next step. You may choose to coat your tires with a weather-resistant sealant to keep the paint from flaking and chipping as easily.

5. Cover the bottom of your tire with durable plastic to form the bottom of the planter. You may choose to use a staple gun to hold the plastic in place, but many DIYers who complete this project just use the weight of the mulch to keep the plastic where it needs to be.

6. Stack your tires as desired. You may choose to use your drill and stainless screws to attach them to each other at this time. Some DIYers skip this step, while others find it helps hold their tires in place much more easily. The choice is up to you.

7. Use your shovel to fill your tire planters with mulch and gardening soil.

8. Plant your plants and water them properly.

9. Congratulations! You’ve just finished building your simple DIY tire planter.

3. Concrete Block Raised Garden Beds

Last but not least, you can choose to build your raised garden bed out of concrete blocks. This is an excellent option if you’re looking for something that you don’t have to move very often, or at all. This version of a raised garden bed will take a little bit more work overall, and it’s probably going to cost a bit more than the other two versions listed here, too. Depending on what you want to do with your backyard, however, as well as the type of soil you have to work with, this may be the perfect solution for a problem area or a difficult space.

Raised Garden Beds

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/89/Hochbeet_Vorderm%C3%BChle_1.JPG

Materials

materials for Raised Garden Beds
  • Concrete blocks (see step #1 to help determine the right number)
  • Paint for masonry
  • Adhesive for masonry
  • 1”x8” wood boards
  • Gardening soil
  • Plants
  • Level
  • Mallet
  • Shovel
  • Paintbrush and tray
  • Hearing, eye, and breathing protection
  • Durable work gloves

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Note: If you have trouble lifting cinder blocks over and over for a long period of time, you may need an assistant for this raised garden bed alternative.

Instructions

1. You’ll need to start by figuring out how many cinder blocks required to complete your project. Most concrete blocks of a standard size are 15.6 inches. Measure the space you want to cover to help determine how many blocks you need to purchase.

2. Measure the right amount of space in your backyard for your new garden bed.

3. Use your shovel to loosen and remove the grass and top of the soil beneath where your garden bed will be placed. Then pack down the soil until it’s firm and stable.

4. Lay out the first row of cinder blocks to form the perimeter of the garden bed. Take your time and adjust them to get the right fit. Use your level to make sure they’re placed evenly.

5. Use masonry adhesive to outline the tops of the first row of blocks.

6. Stack the second row of blocks on top of the first in a staggered pattern. If you need to cut blocks to fit into this pattern, you will need to use a circular saw or have the blocks cut at your local hardware or home repair store. You may also be able to purchase separate 8x8x8 blocks to fill in the gaps.

7. Continue using adhesive and more blocks in a staggered pattern until the wall has reached the height you want it to be at.

8. Cut your wood boards to fit the top of the concrete wall to cap off the blocks. If you prefer, you can purchase concrete block caps for this job, but this may be more expensive than using a piece of lumber.

9. Use the masonry paint and brush (or a roller) to paint the entire wall in a uniform color. You can also paint the wood boards on top of the wall in a matching or complementary color.

10. Wait for the paint to dry before you fill the garden bed with gardening soil.

11. Plant your plants and water them to get them started.

12. Congratulations! You have built a raised concrete block garden bed.

Tips for Positioning Your Garden Bed

One of the most common struggles home gardeners run into is where to put raised garden bed plants. Although every yard and every situation is different, there are a handful of tips you can keep in mind to make sure your plants are positioned in the best possible location to thrive in your backyard. Check out our suggestions below to help you get started planning out your new yard garden.

beat down on your plants

1. Check for at least six hours of direct sunlight, but not constant direct sunlight.

You don’t want the sun to beat down on your plants all day every day, but they do need to be exposed to enough sunlight to thrive. Placing a canopy or shade over your garden can be a good way to achieve both.

2. Be sure your yard is level or can easily be leveled.

 garden beds water

You can’t build a raised garden bed in an area with very uneven ground, so you’ll probably need to do a little work to get the ground ready for your new garden.

3. Check for proximity to a water source.

Make sure your garden hose can c, or you’ll have to think about hauling water to and from your plants every day.

4. Pay attention to the air circulation in your intended garden location.

a wind tunnel garden

Don’t plant your garden in a wind tunnel or in a place where the air is constantly stale and blocked by buildings or structures.

5. Think about drainage issues.

Try not to place your garden just below your gutters or in an area where water collects easily in your yard.

Conclusion

There’s a lot to think about when you’re planning to create your own raised garden beds in your backyard! Although each option has its own strengths and weaknesses, it can still be tough to figure out which one is right for your yard setup. Remember that wood, repurposed tires, and concrete blocks all have their own unique styles and appearances and don’t forget that each one fits into a slightly different budget as well.

Figuring out your budget and the style you’re looking for in your backyard are great ways to get started on the path to determining the right type of garden bed for your needs. If you have a very traditional country-style yard, for example, you probably want to stay away from using repurposed tires in your decorating. On the other hand, if you’re into the modern shabby chic look or want something you can decorate and make all your own, tires may be the perfect solution.

Remember, too, that if you feel uncomfortable performing any of these tasks, you can always ask for help from a friend or family member. You can also have most wood and cinder blocks cut by home repair or hardware stores, although in some cases you may need to call ahead to be sure someone is available to help you.

Making a raised garden bed doesn’t have to be hard. Follow our tips and you’ll have a beautiful garden full of delicious veggies or beautiful flowers in no time!

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Starting a New Life in Our Glorious Desert Garden…

We have a yard, now what?

LESSON#1: What type of garden do you want?

You can create a garden as lush as the ones found in more temperate climates. The trade-off is your time and water. How much do you want to baby your garden? How much time and money are you willing to invest regularly?

If you want to spend at least part of your time outside of the garden, consider the xeriscape models. Xeriscaping is landscaping and gardening that conserves water and chooses drought resistant plants. It is a good alternative to traditional gardening in Arizona. Many people assume these types of landscapes are ugly or limiting, but that doesn’t have to the case. If you long for the green grass and lush foliage of cooler climates, consider a combination of desert and traditional gardening to strike the balance you are looking for.

LESSON 2: Make a plan

Take your time to develop a plan for the type of garden and landscaping you want. You can get an overall plan design from a local landscaper if you have difficulty visualizing what the garden should look like. Check with your homeowner’s association CC&R to determine if there are any planting restrictions for your neighborhood. The plan will guide you through your landscaping process. It can keep you focused when you find something wonderful (but not in the plan) at the nursery or in your neighbor’s yard. It can help you avoid expensive mistakes. Think long term and develop your garden in stages over time. Remember, this is your little piece of heaven, where you will go to enjoy the beautiful weather and relax. Take your time to make it what you want.

LESSON 3: Plant the trees first!

the trees

One of the most important considerations in enjoying your Arizona garden is to provide adequate shade. If you don’t have any trees on your property or if you need more shade than you currently have, invest the money in larger trees and have them professionally planted. Snowbirds and retirees don’t have time to wait for smaller trees to mature. You want to enjoy your garden as soon as you can. Larger, more established trees will have a better chance to survive the planting process. Put your money here and save on shrubs and smaller plantings. It’s good to get the advice of a professional when planting the trees. Don’t plant them too close to foundation walls, retaining or privacy walls or piping and irrigation systems. As the plants root system expands, it can damage these structures.

Consider the tree’s form and make sure it’s suited to the location and space available. Trees shapes vary: upright, open; wide-crown; rounded-crown; shrublike; vase shaped.

Trees we had good luck with:

Comments:

  • Chaste Tree: Temperature:15 degrees Fahrenheit-Light: Full to partial sun-Water: moderate watering-Growth: Moderate 20x20-Shape:shrublike
  • Evergreen Elm: Temperature: 20 degrees Fahrenheit-Light: Full sun-Water: Moderate watering-Growth: Fast 35x35-Shape: Umbrellalike
  • Live Oak: Temperature: 0 degrees Fahrenheit-Light: Full sun-Water: Moderate-Growth:Moderate 40x50-Shape: Wide crown.
  • Texas Honey Mesquite: Temperature: 0 degrees Fahrenheit-Light: Full sun-Water: Low-Growth: Fast 30x30-Shape: Wide crown.
  • A deciduous tree – it will lose its foliage during the winter. Chaste trees have beautiful lavender spikes. No thorns, moderate litter, seeds can be hazardous on sidewalks.
  • Elms are Semi-evergreen so they have some foliage year round. The leaves are dark green and it creates a beautiful moderated umbrella effect. The bark is interesting. No thorns, some litter, works well with lawns.
  • Oak trees are “semi-evergreen” meaning they have some foliage all year round. The leaves are dark green and it has a beautiful thick crown. No thorns, allergenic, works well with lawns.
  • The leaves have a fine texture, Deciduous; Large thorns, seasonal litter; pale yellow flowers in spring.

LESSON 4: Do you want Winter Grass or Summer Grass?

Bermuda grass tolerates Arizona’s extreme temperatures, but is dormant during Arizona winter months. To have a green lawn all year round, you will have to plant winter rye grass. It’s usually planted in October. Wait until evening temps are around 60 degrees Fahrenheit before planting.

Bermuda Grass

Cut back the summer grass and thin it to create room for the new grass. Overseeding – the term used for planting rye grass in the winter because you are planting rye seed over the existing Bermuda.

Don’t worry about the Bermuda (summer) grass. The Bermuda will awaken from its beauty sleep in late April or May. Rye grass will die in early May when temps reach 100. Stop watering the grass to let it die out for a couple of weeks, and then begin watering again to help the Bermuda grass come back.

You can plant summer (Bermuda) grass for the first time from seed, but the easiest way to have a great looking lawn is to lay sod. Remember, snowbirds and retirees want to enjoy their garden. Plant sod to get the results you want quickly.

Some people skip the winter rye grass to save on water and the extra effort of seeding another lawn. The choice is yours, dear gardener.

WATERING - Your lawn needs Deep Roots

If you water frequently, but for shorter periods, it’s like giving your grass a sip of water. Grass needs a deep soaking to develop deep roots. Water it less often, but for longer periods.

The water should seep into the soil about a foot each time. Run the sprinklers and insert a screwdriver 12 inches into the ground. It will stop when it hits dry soil.

1-2-3 Rule

Water small plants such as groundcover and annuals to a depth of 1 foot

Medium plants like shrubs to 2 feet

Large plants like trees to 3 feet.

Instead of watering daily, water only every 3 to 4 days or once a week until temperatures hit triple digits.

Lesson 5: Xeriscape is not Zena the Warrior’s Sister

Xeriscaping is landscaping and gardening that conserves water and chooses drought resistant plants. The term comes from the Greek word xeros which means dry. The idea is to create a landscape that is in tune with the local environment and its climate. The savings you gain from reduced water consumption will show on your monthly bill and with the extra time you have from not mowing the lawn, you can play a round of golf on somebody else’s lawn!

If there is no grass, you will need some type of mulch in its place. Mulches cover the soil and reduce evaporation. They cool the soil and inhibit weeds and erosion.

  • Organic mulches – bark chips and wood grindings
  • Inorganic mulches- decomposed granite and crushed rock

Pros and Cons of Ground Covers:

Minimal Maintenance. Rock-based ground covers don’t need frequent replacing, not easily blown away by wind or disturbed by your pets.

ground covers

They don’t decompose so they last much longer than other types of ground covers. Wood chips and bark chips will fade over time and will require replacing more often.

More Durable: Gravel and other rock types stand up to heavy use. Choose the size of the rock based on how much traffic it will encounter. If people will be walking on it frequently, pea gravel is easier to traverse. It’s no fun scrambling over chunky rocks in your flipflops.

Bugs: As organic mulches like wood chips decompose, they attract different insects, especially Termites which are a problem in Arizona.

Sink into the Soil: Rocks are heavier than the soil they are covering. They will sink over time and can interfere with the soil.

Flying Rocks: Be careful mowing the grass near areas with stone-based covers. The lawn mower or trimmer can catch on the rocks and send them flying through the air.

Rising Temperatures: Stones absorb and retain heat which they then release as the sun goes down. They also reflect heat off of their exposed surfaces. They can raise temperatures in the area and make the house hot.

No Nutrients: Inorganic mulches don’t improve the soil like decomposing mulches do.

Lesson 6 “I had no idea it would get this big!”

beautiful blooms

Before planting anything, consider how big it will be when mature. Although we live in the Sonoran desert, once water is available, we actually have two growing seasons. If you water your plants correctly, you will be amazed at how fast they grow. That small flowering plant or bush you picked up at the nursery can easily begin to outgrow its neighbors and start grasping more territory like a greedy land baron. Carefully consider how much water and fertilizer you are using. You may overfeed your plants to get beautiful blooms, but rapid growth also means more time spent trimming and pruning.

Fruit Trees:

We love our lemon tree but you have to accept more watering, pesticides and pruning. There can be the problem of what to do with all of the extra fruit you can’t eat. Some HOAs don’t allow fruit trees so check your CC&Rs. Dwarf fruit trees still produce a lot of fruit but are easier to manage in the garden.

LESSON 7: Just because it’s SOLD LOCALLY doesn’t mean it will GROW LOCALLY

For many transplants and snowbirds, landscaping in this new climate can be challenging. It’s natural to look for plants and flowers from “back home” when shopping. Many will not last in Arizona’s hot summers. It doesn’t help that these plants are sold in local nurseries as well as the big box DIY stores. The plants are shipped in from out of state and can’t survive very long in this climate.

LESSON 8: Caliche is not the Queen of the Dragons.

Arizona soil is composed of a sedimentary rock known as “caliche”. It is very hard and doesn’t retain moisture. It has to be dealt with if you want anything to grow. You will have to loosen the soil before you can start digging. Soak the soil for 1-2 days before starting to dig. Otherwise, you will be chipping away at what seems like concrete. Always dig a bigger hole than you think you will need for planting. You will have to fill the hole with potting soil mix or your plants won’t grow.

LESSON 9: Even “hardy” plants need babying at first.

Although the plant description says, “hardy” and “drought-tolerant”, it’s still a baby when you plant it. It’s gone through a shock being transported and planted and will need extra TLC to get it established. Some plants can take up to a year before their root system is established and only then will they really begin to flower. Be patient and treat the newbies in our garden with care.

garden with care

LESSON 10: Don’t plant “cactus with cosmos”.

When planting your garden, make sure your different residents can live peacefully as neighbors. Cactus and Succulents can’t tolerate too much water – their roots will turn mushy. If you are planting flowers or bushes nearby that need frequent watering – someone will lose the battle. The loser will be YOU, the gardener as your beautiful plants, chosen with so much care turn brown and die. The same applies to irrigation systems for lawns or other water-thirsty plants that might encroach on your desert plants’ territory. Too much water will kill them.

sunlight

LESSON 11: Sunlight matters just as much as water

Don’t plant your sun-loving babies next to those crying for shade. Be aware of how much sunlight each plant can handle.

LESSON 12: Plants let you know when they are sick.

If your plants lack water or nutrients, they become prime targets for infestation by bugs. You have to feed them and fertilize them regularly.

BONUS VIDEO: