7 Reasons Why Is My Cactus Turning Brown?

Browning is a rather typical condition that many cactus growers have to deal with. Fortunately, this is not a death sentence for your plants. When you detect brown spots start to grow on your plant, take time to determine the cause and deal with it appropriately

As plants, cacti are renowned for their hardiness and minimal care requirements. In most circumstances, they merely require adequate exposure to sunshine, well-drained soil, and attentive watering to grow. Pest troubles aren’t prevalent with cactus and are simple to manage when they develop. Although these succulents are typically considered resistant, stem dryness and browning is regular issue that you may experience.

So, why is my cactus turning brown? Various factors may cause cacti to become brown, yellow, or even purple. It’s possible that sunburn is at blame if the leaves of your plant are turning brown from the stem upwards. The browning might be caused by root rot if it seems to start at the bottom and work its way to the top. Red spider mites and corking might potentially cause your plant to change color from green to brown.

We’ll go through all the reasons your cactus could be turning brown, as well as what you can do to prevent it from happening. Read on to find out all you need to know.

Why Is My Cactus Turning Brown?

Why Is My Cactus Turning Brown?

As noted in our introduction, cactus plants may become brown for several causes. In this part, we cover some of the primary reasons for this difficulty.

Root rot

If the base of your cactus plant is turning brown and the stem is limp and yellow, the issue might be root rot.

Root rot is notoriously difficult to treat since it generally begins from the inside before spreading to the outside. In most situations, indications of root rot will only begin to surface after the condition is well advanced.

Stop watering the plant as soon as you see indications of root rot and repot it in well-draining soil as soon as possible.

It’s also possible to attempt to salvage your plant by removing any rotting tissue and a little amount of the healthy surrounding tissue.

Make sure you use a clean, sharp knife and wash it with alcohol in between the cuts. Once you are done, make sure to spray sulfur powder on the wounds to help the plant recuperate. Overwatering and poor drainage soils are the major causes of root rot.

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Indoor Hazards

Even if you keep your cactus inside, they’re still vulnerable to the same illnesses and pests that attack them outside. Indoor plants, on the other hand, may encounter issues that are specific to their environment.

If you notice that your houseplants are turning brown or drying out, make sure that they aren’t near a heat vent.

The blowing hot stream of air from the vent may cause plant tissues to dry up despite the thick coating of waxy that shields the plant. AC vents may also cause comparable damage, however, it may take longer for the damage to emerge.

Even if your plant isn’t right next to a window, if one side of it begins to brown and feel brittle, it’s probably time to move it.

Sunburn

Sunburn is the most frequent and probable reason for your cactus plant turning brown from the top. Most of us associate cactus with hot, dry deserts, so this may seem out of the ordinary.

Some cactus species, however, do not do well in direct sunlight. Some of them need low light and partial shade to flourish successfully. Cacti plants acquired from a plant nursery or shop may also suffer sunburn if you do not take care to expose them gently to the bright, outside light.

In most situations, light sunburn will emerge as pale discoloration on the sun-facing side of the plant. Severe sunburn leaves behind brown scars that develop over time from the pale areas. Cacti plants with severe brown burns have irreversible damage, and there is nothing you can do about it.

But, if your plant has white areas, you may rescue it by shifting it to a shaded place. As long as you give shade on the warmest days of the year, it will completely recover. It would also assist if you spend some time to learn about your plant’s lighting needs so that you can supply the optimum circumstances possible.

Because they aren’t accustomed to being in full sunshine, cactus that aren’t native to the area must be gradually introduced to full sunlight over the course of several days.

Start increasing the exposure gradually over many weeks. It won’t be long until your plants completely adjust to the outside light conditions.

It is also necessary to remember that certain cactus plants should never be exposed to full sunshine all day.

Scales

A scale is a brown mark on a cactus plant caused by a microscopic insect with a hard brown shell. These insects feed on plant liquids that weaken the cactus plant making it appear yellow or brown.

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Washing your plant in a mild detergent solution may help if this is the case with your particular plant. You can also spray it with water to remove scales. You may use your chosen brand of pesticide for bug infestations.

The alternative approach of killing scales is by using cotton swabs dipped in horticultural oil on either side. This generates an oil film on top of the scales cutting off the oxygen supply to the insects.

With time, the insects choke to death.

Damage from ice

Just like sunburns, frost damage may also cause cactus plants to become brown in damaged places. The damage is fairly comparable, and the only method to discern between sunburn damage and frost damage is by monitoring the temperature.

When tissues of a cactus plant are exposed to freezing temperatures, the cells rupture. The plant will attempt to self-heal by forming calluses over the injured tissues, even if you don’t detect it immediately away.

This is the same sort of self-healing process that happens after a hail storm as well but the brittle places on the plant are frequently spotty.

Frost damage may still happen on indoor plants that come in close contact with the window glass.

Mites

If your plant is turning brown from the top where new growth is developing, it might be an indication of mite infestation.

Red spider mites are small insects that drain liquids from your plant at the most vulnerable sections. These insects are so little such that it would be considerably simpler to seek for their webs other than the insects themselves.

Symptoms of mite infection include rusty brown blotches that form at the top of the plant and the appearance of mite webs.

These pests, which munch on the plant’s whole outer layer of tissue if left untreated, may destroy it. The indoor cactus is the most sensitive to red spider mites.

Sometimes, the plants arrive from the nursery while they are already contaminated with these mites. To get rid of pests, try watering your plant from above with a pretty vigorous stream of water.

Root lice are another prevalent form of mite that may infest your cactus. Root lice may travel from pot to pot for plants cultivated in greenhouses, making it difficult to manage.

The easiest technique to deal with root lice is by segregating your new plants from the other plants for a few weeks. You should also prevent soil sharing and recycling to reduce root lice.

Corking

The abrupt emergence of solid barklike and brown tissue a few inches above the soil of an otherwise healthy cactus plant might be an indication of corking.

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Fortunately, this is a normal aspect of cactus plant aging, so don’t be alarmed.

In most situations, corking begins from the base of the plant and travels upwards gradually. If your plant is browning due to corking, there is little you can do about it since it is a natural process.

Just concentrate on taking excellent care of it to slow down the aging process.

How Can You Prevent Your Cactus From Browning?

How Can You Prevent Your Cactus From Browning?

Are you wondering whether you can preserve your cactus from turning brown? The good news is that there are tons of things you can take to prevent this issue.

The greatest strategy to protect your plant from turning brown is to make sure it is growing in a suitable atmosphere. Also, make sure you isolate new plants and check them for pests and illnesses before you expose them to your other plants.

To minimize browning as a consequence of root rot, supply your plant with loose and well-drained soil. Expose it to appropriate light and prevent overwatering. More than 90 percent of root rot instances originate as a consequence of overwatering.

In reality, cactus plants encourage underwatering instead of overwatering. Always mind the fact that overwatering cactus plants is considerably more damaging than underwatering.

Summary

Browning is a typical condition that many cactus growers have to deal with. Various factors may cause cacti to become brown, yellow, or even purple. Cacti are renowned for their hardiness and minimal care requirements. What’s turning My Cactus to Turn Brown? If your cacti plant is turning brown or drying out, it’s probably time to move it.

Sunburn is the most frequent and probable reason for your cactus plant turning brown from the top. Cacti plants acquired from a plant nursery or shop may also suffer sunburn if you do not take care of them gently. Some cactus plants should never be exposed to full sunshine all day. A scale is a brown mark on a cactus plant caused by a microscopic insect with a hard brown shell. If your plant is turning brown from the top where new growth is developing, it might be an indication of mite infestation.

How can you prevent your cactus from turning brown? Browning is a natural part of cactus plant aging, so don’t be alarmed. Root lice are another prevalent form of mite that may infest the cactus. If your plant is turning brown due to corking, there is little you can do about it.

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