How To Transplant a Cactus or Succulent

How To Transplant a Cactus or Succulent

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to transplant a cactus:

Transplanting a cactus or succulent requires some care to ensure the process goes smoothly. 

  1. Choose the right time: The best time to transplant a cactus is during its active growing season, which is typically in spring or early summer. Avoid transplanting during the dormant period or winter months.
  2. Gather the necessary materials: You’ll need gloves, long-handled tongs or kitchen tongs, a clean container or pot, well-draining soil mix (such as a cactus or succulent mix), and a water source.
  3. Prepare the new container: Select a pot with drainage holes that is slightly larger than the current container, allowing room for the cactus to grow. Fill the new pot with the well-draining soil mix, leaving enough space to accommodate the cactus’s roots.
  4. Water the cactus: Before transplanting, water the cactus a few days in advance. This will help loosen the soil and make it easier to remove the plant from its current container.
  5. Protect yourself and the cactus: Put on gloves to protect your hands from the cactus spines. Use long-handled tongs or kitchen tongs to handle the cactus if it has large spines or is difficult to hold.
  6. Remove the cactus from its current container: Gently turn the container upside down while supporting the base of the cactus with your hand or tongs. Tap the container or squeeze the sides to help loosen the soil. Carefully lift the cactus out, supporting the root ball.
  7. Examine the roots: Inspect the roots for any signs of damage or rot. If you notice any unhealthy or damaged roots, trim them off with clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears.
  8. Place the cactus in the new container: Make a hole in the soil mix in the new container and carefully place the cactus, ensuring it sits upright and at a similar depth as it was in the previous container. Gently backfill the space around the roots with the soil mix, pressing it lightly to secure the cactus.
  9. Allow the cactus to settle: Leave the newly transplanted cactus in a shaded area for a few days to allow it to adjust to its new environment. Avoid direct sunlight during this time.
  10. Water sparingly: After a few days, you can start watering the cactus lightly. Be careful not to overwater, as excessive moisture can lead to root rot. Allow the soil to dry out between waterings, and adjust the watering frequency based on the cactus’s needs and the surrounding environment.


Remember to monitor the cactus closely after transplanting and provide it with appropriate care, including proper light exposure and temperature conditions. With time, the cactus should acclimate and continue to thrive in its new container.


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