Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

How to Transplant a Cutting From a San Pedro Cactus

cactus 1 image by Marc Rigaud from

The San Pedro cactus grows naturally in areas of South America such as Southern Ecuador and Peru. The cactus can be grown either from seed or from a cutting. A cactus grown from a cutting will grow much faster. A cutting tends to grow about a foot a year. Once started, your San Pedro cactus will be a hardy and quick grower. The cactus can even withstand long periods without food or water.

Sterilize your knife with rubbing alcohol before taking a cutting from your cactus. This will cut down on the possibility of your new plant becoming infected with disease.

Cut off the top 1/3 of the tip of the cactus. Cuttings that are about 6 inches tall work the best for rooting. Begin in the spring or summer for the best results. Cactus are typically dormant in the winter and may root more slowly.

Put your cutting in a cool and dark place until the bottom area where you cut forms a dry and hard scab. The scab should form in about two weeks.

Mix equal parts perlite and potting soil together in a 10-inch pot. Fill the pot with the soil mixture until it is about 2/3 full.

Dip the cut bottom of your cactus in rooting hormone for a few seconds, and then place your cactus on the surface of the soil with the side you cut facing downward. Add another 3 inches of the soil mixture around the base and sides of the cactus so that the bottom portion is buried in the soil.

Moisten the soil slightly with water so that it is not dry. Cactus cuttings do not need water to root. Excessive water can cause rotting.

Keep your planted cutting in an area with indirect sunlight. Make sure the temperature around your plant is maintained at about 60 degrees F to stimulate rooting.

After one month, check if your San Pedro cactus has rooted. Stick your fingers in the soil around the plant to feel for root growth. Rooting can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months.

Give your cactus enough water to moisten the soil once roots form, and let the soil dry between watering. Fertilize your cactus with a 7-40-6 cactus fertilizer once roots form. Continue to fertilizer your plant once in the spring and summer.

Garden Guides