Plant care

How To Care For A Cactus Plant Indoors or Outdoors

Mary Smith
By Mary Smith. Updated: January 16, 2017
How To Care For A Cactus Plant Indoors or Outdoors

Most cacti come from the Americas. They are ideal to add a different touch to your garden or a space in your home, as these plants are great for both indoor decoration and outdoor gardening. If you already have one of these plants or if you are planning on buying, in this OneHowTo article we will go over how to care for a cactus plant. So if you want to know about all aspects of cactus plant care such as watering, light and potential problems, then keep reading below to find out more.

You may also be interested in: Easy to Care For Outdoor Plants

Steps to follow:


The first thing you should know about caring for a cactus is where to place it. It is best you have a flower pot available for your little cactus. Choose one that has holes in the bottom so you can guarantee proper drainage. See our OneHowTo article on how and when to transplant cacti for more details.


When you have to fill the pot, do so. You can buy fillings like oak bark, wood chippings, soil and even your own homemade fertilizer. If you just buy the cactus and expect it to grow, you'd better not fill the entire pot. Leave at least five centimeters of space between the filling and the top.


In dry climates, Cacti need a weekly watering to flourish. However, depending on the time of year you should increase or decrease the amount of water. In winter, watering is recommended more frequently, at least twice a week. The best way to know if your cactus needs water is by putting your finger halfway into the ground, if it needs water you'll notice that the sand is dry.


Watering a cactus is different from watering other plants because they need very wet ground. It's better to mist your cactus until the water begins to overflow from the base of the pot. When the cactus does not need much water, it is best to have intervals where you add a little water, but always using the same amount.


Your cactus needs light to stay healthy and alive. In a greenhouse, a cactus can get plenty of sunlight or near a window if your cactus is indoors. In addition, sunlight will warm up the surface of the cactus to prevent moisture accumulation and the potential problems this can cause, such as mold or bacteria damaging the plant. For this same reason, we advise keeping the plant in an area with plenty of ventilation.

If you want to read similar articles to How To Care For A Cactus Plant Indoors or Outdoors, we recommend you visit our Gardening & plants category.

Write a comment
What did you think of this article?
Marlene C
Can a cactus plant be put in a planter that you pour water in the bottom to be absorbed, rather than putting water in the top of the plant
OneHowTo Editor
Absolutely! In fact, some professionals prefer putting about a half inch of water in the bottom and letting it absorb.
Loretta L. Molitor
What to do with cactus gets too tall and to stand up straight on its own?
joh yates
hi i got a plant in decmber last year and the thornes have started falling off is that god
OneHowTo Editor
No, it is likely a sign of disease, pests or overwatering.
Hedy Tosi
I have a Christmas cactus that is limpy hanging. It's never been this way before - just two stems are hardy. What is wrong & what do I do? Thank you for any advice.

OneHowTo Editor
Hi Hedy,

Make sure you water the cactus enough, and that it has adequate drainage so it doesn't get waterlogged. It should not get too much direct sunlight either. Hope this helps.
How To Care For A Cactus Plant Indoors or Outdoors