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Drive through any Southwest neighborhood and you are highly likely to see cacti growing alongside shrubs and groundcovers.  

I must admit that I don’t have a lot of cactus in my own landscape – there are three to be exact.  But, the few that I have, I find myself particularly attached to.

Mexican fence post cactus (Pachycereus marginatus) , Cactus Cutting

This is my Mexican fence post cactus (Pachycereus marginatus), which I brought home as a single cactus cutting over 10 years ago.  As you can see, it has grown a lot since then, growing taller and producing new stems.

Mexican fence post cactus (Pachycereus marginatus)

Three years ago, we took a cutting from this cactus and gave it to our friends and neighbors, who live kitty-corner from our house.  

Newly planted - March 2013 , Cactus Cutting

Newly planted – March 2013.

Every since then, I’ve kept my eye on this newly planted cactus watching with interest as it grew.

Cactus Cutting ,  November 2013

November 2013

Eight months later, two new stems began to emerge.  You can see the parent cactus in our yard in the background.

Cactus Cutting , March 2014

March 2014

A year later, the new stems were becoming more noticeable.

Cactus Cutting , March 2015 - 2 years later

March 2015 – 2 years later

I was surprised at how quickly it grew.

Three years after planting.

Three years after planting.

Today, as I was driving home, I noticed a new little stem beginning to emerge.  

Many different types of cacti can be planted from cuttings and it has been so much fun watching this one go from a single ‘spear’ to one with multiple stems.  

Have you ever planted a cactus cutting?  If so, what kind and how did it grow for you?

Click here, to read how to plant a cactus cutting.

Do you have a plant that you have wanted to add to your garden?  

I have wanted a certain cactus for my own landscape for a long time and earlier this week, I found myself bringing a cutting of my favorite cactus finally home.

A New Cactus Cutting Finds a Home

I was so excited that instead of putting it in the back of my car, I strapped it into the front seat for the ride home – I don’t recommend doing it that way for a cactus with thorns 🙂

In my work as a horticulturist, I have been fortunate to have picked up cuttings of certain cacti. Often, the cuttings result from pruning and it’s not unusual to see some left at the curb for trash pick up.

While I have planted a purple prickly cactus and a Mexican fence post from cuttings, I was still missing my favorite cacti in my garden.

'Monstrosus' (Lophocereus schottii 'Monstrosus')

I have often used totem pole cactus ‘Monstrosus’ (Lophocereus schottii ‘Monstrosus’) in my designs. I love its knobby shape and the fact that it is thornless.

What I don’t like about them is their price – a 1 1/2 ft. section can cost up to $40.

So you can imagine my reaction when I was visiting a client and came up upon this sight…

different types of cacti cuttings

Seeing so many different types of cacti cuttings, just ready for planting, made me almost hyperventilate.

There were beautiful cacti available – Agave americana ‘Variegata’, a unique species of prickly pear, Cereus peruvianus AND my favorite – Lophocereus shottii ‘Monstrosus’.

My client had received these cuttings from her next door neighbor who had just pruned back some of her cacti. It turned out the neighbor had a beautiful garden that has been featured in several magazines, including Phoenix Home & Garden.

I explained to my client where she could use the cuttings and explained the benefits of each one. When I mentioned that the Lophocereus was my favorite type of cacti, she offered to give me one.

Despite my desire for this type of cacti, I was hesitant to accept, but my client was insistent.

So, I picked out the smallest one and drove home.

New Cactus Cutting

On my way home, I thought about where I wanted to put my new cactus.

I finally decided on putting it in my front landscape in the large area to the side of the driveway.

Planting cactus cuttings

Planting cactus cuttings is extremely easy and the hole doesn’t have to be big.

Planting cactus cuttings

We planted my new cactus cutting so that the bottom 6 inches were buried.

Taking cuttings from cacti of all types is a fairly simple process, there are some guidelines that you need to follow.

A couple of years ago, I wrote about giving a cutting from our Mexican fence post cactus to our neighbor with step-by-step instructions that you can see here.

Our neighbor’s cactus has been in the ground for 2 years now and is growing so well – it’s formed two new ‘arms’.

I can hardly wait to see how my newest cactus grows!

How about you? Have you ever given or planted a cactus cutting?