Cactus belong to the succulent family which are naturally slow-growing plants. But cactus is the slowest among all. If you ever had cactus you would be familiar with this. Most people panic when they notice no growth in their cactus. Cactus plant growth is invisible as it grows only an inch tall in a year.
Why Is My Cactus Not Growing? The slow growth of the cactus is due to its lack of leaves, soil properties, presence of stomata and its inability to carry out the photosynthesis process.
Reason behind the slow growth of a cactus
There can be many reasons from watering habits, presence of sunlight, soil properties and how you take care of your cactus. The prominent reasons behind the slow growth of cactus are as follows:
- Lack of leaves
- Soil and climatic properties
- Stomata in the cactus plant
1. Lack of leaves
Cactus being a desert plant doesn’t have leaves. According to research, 99% of the water absorbed by the plants get evaporated through their leaves. If cactus had leaves like other plants it wouldn’t be able to survive in the desert. But this also contributes to its slow growth.
Plants absorb sunlight and make food through their leaves. Due to the lack of leaves cactus are not able to absorb much sunlight and carry the photosynthesis process properly. Cactus have less chlorophyll that is green tissue which limits their ability to grow like other plants.
2. Soil and climatic properties
Cactus grow in the desert where the soil lacks adequate nutrients and water. To survive in such conditions cactus plants adapt to live in scarcity. They do not tend to grow and sprout leaves and flowers like other plants.
The soil in the desert remains dry. So these plants have adapted to store water for their survival. When you keep a cactus in your house, you must ensure that you don’t overwater it. Also, the soil must not be always wet or water clogged.
Due to lack of proper nutrients, water and rich soil cactus plants grow slowly.
3. Stomata in cactus plants
Cactus plants have very few stomata which add to their slow growth.
Stomata are pores on the outer surface of the plants. These pores open up to take in carbon dioxide. Carbon Dioxide is needed for the photosynthesis process in plants. The growth factor of the plants depends on the production of chlorophyll through the process of photosynthesis.
Due to fewer pores or stomata to suck in CO2, the cactus plants cannot make enough chlorophyll to help them grow.
Slow growth for cactus plants is a matter of survival. If they had more pores they would lose water and die in the desert. Even their lack of leaves is their way of adapting to the climate for survival.
The major reason behind the slow growth of your cactus plant is its restricted ability to execute the photosynthesis process. All the factors limit their ability to make food or Chlorophyll through photosynthesis. When there is less food there will be slow growth.