Cactus plants for home gardens you can grow easily in tropical climates. Cacti are really certain types of plants that are having adaptations for hot dry climates, preferably that of the deserts. Mostly, they are characterised by thick skin and sharp thorns.
The Moon cactus plants with attractive colours
Truly cactus plants are the members of the wide family cactaceae, with more than 1500 species. Generally cactus plants are natives of the desert regions. However, we can find different varieties of cactus plants all over the world. Especially, in places with tropical climates like Kerala, which is in the southernmost part of India.
Different varieties of Cactus Plants for home gardens
Definitely, there are a lot of fascinating varieties of cactus plants. The stem like structures in different shape, bright flowers, edible fruits etc. are the main features.
Also there are tall plants, dwarf or miniature ones that are stout or round in shape etc.
The Mammillaria cactus plant with round shape
Generally cactus plants are succulents, that can hold water for long periods. The thick coating of skin can prevent excess loss of water through the stems. Moreover, the thorns are modified leaves that are also special adaptations of the plants. Especially for the prevention of water loss, as well as protection from animals.
In addition, the wide spread root system just below the top soil can absorb water in a faster way. Preferably, during the rainy season in desert regions, that are comparatively shorter.
Uses of cactus plants
A lot of desert animals feed on the fruits of the cactus plants.
Due to the unpalatable tastes we cannot consume most of the cactus fruits, though they are edible. However, we get the most delicious and nutritious dragon fruits from a cactus plant.
The flower of the Dragon fruit plant
Likewise the plant as well as fruits of the Prickly pears, are widely used in Mexican cuisines. The plant also known as Opuntia, has got a lot of medicinal properties. Hence, people use it as effective remedy for lowering high blood sugar and cholesterol.
Cactus Plants for air purification and good luck
According to Feng shui, Cacti are ideal plants for indoors, that can bring good luck and prosperity. But we should always keep it in the Bagua corner, which is the right place. Also there is a belief that, a wrongly placed Cactus plant can adversely affect the well being of the inmates.
People from certain parts of the world, believe that thorny plants are symbols of negative energy.
But a thing that appears beautiful to our eyes, can surely bring positive energy. Definitely there are a lot of Cactus plants, that are really attractive.
Cactus plants can purify our indoor air, by absorbing a lot of toxins like carbon dioxide.
Above all, the Cacti are ornamental plants, that we can grow easily in our home gardens.
Owing to its wide range of varieties, we can choose Cactus plants that suit fine for our gardens. Mostly, according to the availability of space indoors or outdoors.
For growing directly in the garden, we can select plants that are larger in size. Through proper pruning, we can maintain the size and shape of the plant as required. A few Cacti, with other ornamental trees can make your garden really awesome.
It is quite clear, that Cactus plants always need bright direct sunlight for proper growth. For growing indoors, always find a place where the plant gets maximum sunlight. In a like manner, it is essential to keep the plant outdoors occasionally, for maintaining its health and beauty.
Propagation of Cactus Plants for home gardens
For propagating the Cactus plants, we can use cuttings from the mother plants. Collecting saplings through the germination of seeds is another method. However, the fastest and most common one, is through stem cuttings.
If grown either directly in soil or in pots, always provide a well drained sandy medium. Because the fleshy succulent plants, have the tendency to rot faster in a water logged medium.
For pot planting, we can prepare the medium by mixing equal quantities of river sand, dried compost, coco peat and crushed bricks.
Always remember to ensure, that the drainage holes are not blocked. You can place a piece of wire mesh over the hole, before filling the pot with the medium.
Watering the Cactus plants for home gardens
All Cactus plants are succulents, that can hold enough water in their stems. For this reason, it is not necessary to water your Cactus on a daily basis. Likewise over watering can cause the plants to rot faster. Hence you need to water your Cacti, only when the medium is completely dried out.
Safety measures while handling cactus Plants
Most of the Cacti are thorny plants, and hence we must always take necessary precautions against possible injuries.
Certainly we can use thick gloves, for protecting our hands while pruning or repotting the plants.
Also remember to find space for your cacti, that are out of reach of kids as well as pets.
Given below are a few examples of Cactus plants, that are suitable for home gardens.
Moon cactus ( Gymnocalysium mihanovichii )
These are beautiful species of Cactus plants, with brightly coloured top parts. Through grafting, two plants are combined together to make it really attractive.
Moreover, it is one of the best plants for gardening beginners. You can buy saplings of the moon Cactus plants from nurseries.
Peruvian apple cactus (Cereus peruvianus )
This is one of the most common plants that we can grow easily. The plant needs only minimum caring and can thrive in any sunny place.
Mammillaria Cactus Plants for home gardens
It is one of the largest genera in the cactus family, with more than 200 species of plants. Besides, most of the plants are dwarf varieties, that we can grow easily even in small spaces.