3 Guides How To Propagate Cactus Pups?

Cactus offsets are also called pups. To pluck them from the parent plant, cut them at a 45-degree angle and root them in well-draining soil.

In general, a lot of people initially plant cacti as a gift plant. However, many of them become collectors once their plants have grown and begin to bloom. Questions like “How to Propagate Cactus Pups?” start to arise at this point. Fortunately, there are several ways to propagate cactus.

How to propagate cactus pups? They are small versions of the parent plant that grow at the base. This process involves removing offsets from the parent plant, potting them inappropriate mix, and watering appropriately.

Propagating plants may not only produce new plants but also play a critical role in reducing the crowding of pots.

Read on to find out everything you need to know about propagating cacti from cuttings and how to care for newly propagated offsets.

Propagating Cactus From Pups- A Quick Overview

Cacti propagation by cuttings is a vegetative form of plant propagation because it doesn’t involve the transfer of seeds. The parent plant produces an offset, and this is what you use to get a new cactus.

A pup is a small collection of plants that you can remove from the parent plant and use to grow another cactus. This method is often the easiest form of propagating new cacti, but success depends on many factors.

In most cases, pups will already have some roots. However, before you start propagating this way, make sure the cactus species in your garden can produce pups.

Types of cacti that grow pups/offsets

Many barrels and rosette cacti produce “offsets.” Usually, the bigger barrel-type of succulents will create larger offsets. These are one of the best types to propagate from cuttings because they provide a unique way for nutrients and water to be provided as well as shading.

Offsets can form at the base of plants, along their stems, or on their leaves and you should cut them off the mother plant and root them to grow a new one.

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Propagation of cacti by offsets/pups is easy and quick as long as you take clean cuts and allow the offsets to callous before rooting.

Generally, cacti plants that you wish to propagate with offsets must be large, round, and produce clumps. The parent plant must also be large enough and the offsets should be at least the size of a small ball.

How To Propagate Cacti Pups – The Process

When you have successfully identified a plant with pups to propagate, follow the steps below to create new plants from these parents.

Removing cactus pups from the parent plant

Make sure to clean the knife with alcohol or 10% bleach first in order to prevent harmful bacteria from entering your cactus via incision points.

It’s essential to plant the root ball of a tree in an area with good drainage so that it doesn’t rot. Some gardeners also coat the cut end of a pup lightly with sulfur powder to prevent fungal infection and ensure that there isn’t any rotting during this phase, which can take up to 6 weeks before callusing takes place.

However, the sulfur powder may not be necessary if the cut end of your toe calluses before rooting. This process might take a few weeks or even an entire month, depending on different factors like what you’re used to at home. If it is ready for rooting in its current state, then when the cut ends are dry, hardened, and shriveled

To find the offset joint of the pup, make sure to remove any dirt that is on top of it and see the connection between an old plant and its pup. If the connection seems clear, manually detaching it may be easier for you.

If the parent plant has any active rot, be sure to cut it off so that it does not spread. Otherwise, your pup may get sick from it.

Rooting the pup

Once you have a new plant, make sure to root it.

Rooting the plant is necessary if your tree doesn’t already have roots. Place the pup in some dry soil with some gravel and keep an eye on it for around three days to make sure that it has rooted properly.

To create a root starter, you can place the offset in a pot with sand and perlite. Skip this step if your plant has small roots.

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Growing the offset

It is time to pot your pups once they developed roots. Start by preparing the container and the soil for your offsets. Make sure that the container has plenty of drainage holes, as well as being either large or small enough depending on whether you have cactus offsets (see below).

The soil should also have good drainage and be gritty; commercially purchased soil is an option, or one can make their own blend by combining equal parts perlite, pumice, compost, and peat.

Carefully place your pup in soil, but only push ¼th of the way under the soil. Be sure it is stable enough so that if you lift it up, its stem doesn’t fall over. Place pot in a location that receives bright but indirect sunlight and keeps moist.

However, do not water offsets after planting them. Wait at least five days or one week before watering to minimize the risk of root rot and fungal infection.

Cacti plants frequently produce little pups under the stems, which is a natural method of propagation. These baby cacti seem too small because they don’t get enough sunlight.

Dry the seed pods from the parent plant for a few days before planting them. After planting, ensure that they are in a shady area for a couple of days before moving them to an area with more light.

What Kind Of Potting Mix Should You Use For Pups?

The most important aspect to consider when choosing potting soil for cacti is drainage. Cactus plants do not like wet soil which holds water for a long time. If you are new, we recommend using pre-made mixed potting soil.

You may have gardening experience and know-how to make your own potting mix, but if not, here are some guidelines.

  • Make sure to dampen the potting mix, but don’t get it too wet. Remember that wetter soil encourages root rot and fungus. Before adding your pup to the soil, consider dipping them in some fungicide powder.
  • If you want to avoid the moisture problem completely, consider starting your pup in a pumice pot and then transplanting them into their permanent container later.
  • Keep your pet nearby in a well-ventilated yet warm area with plenty of bright, indirect sunlight and only give them occasional misting.
  • To ensure the best results, just make sure to offset your seedlings on top of the soil. They don’t need to be buried deep into the ground. As long as they are stable, they should automatically send out roots in search of soil
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How Often Should You Fertilize Propagated Pups

To start, there is no need to fertilize your pup’s soil – moderate watering and exposure to sufficient sunlight should be enough for most plants. However, as they start to grow into adulthood, you will need at least one application of fertilizer per year.

Do not fertilize a cactus in winter because it is dormant and the growing season has ended. Wait until spring or summer when the active growing season resumes.

PS: After you give your cactus plant water that contains fertilizer, make sure to rinse the plant after giving it water. Cover the soil with potting mix and leave it in a sheltered location of the full sun until new growth appears, then move potted plants back into more intense sunlight.

Summary

Propagating cacti from cuttings is a vegetative form of plant propagation because it doesn’t involve the transfer of seeds. A pup is a small collection of plants that you can remove from the parent plant and use to grow another cactus. Cacti offsets are also called pups. Plant the pup in some dry soil with gravel and keep an eye on it for around three days to make sure it has rooted properly. Removing cactus pups from the parent plant Cacti plants frequently produce little pups, which is a natural method of propagation.

Carefully place your pup in soil, but only push ¼th of the way under the soil. The soil should also have good drainage and be gritty. If you are new, we recommend using pre-made mixed potting soil. Cactus plants do not like wet soil which holds water for a long time. How Often Should You Fertilize Propagated Pups’.

Do not fertilize a cactus in winter because it is dormant and the growing season has ended. If you want to avoid the moisture problem, start your pup in a pumice pot and then transplant them into their permanent container later.

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